Brands Are Identities

Why is there so much animosity towards founders of a successful business getting rewarded for their hard work and willingness to take a risk?

This is so common in the craft community.

The way that I see it is that it's not a business assessment, it's an emotional response to your brand changing into something that you don't approve of.

Brands are identities, and people take on the identities of the products they wear, the teams they support, etc… When that changes, it feels personal because it is personal! We liked knowing Bob and Jerry built this brewery from their garage into one of the coolest spots downtown, and we always brought our friends there, because we identified with Bob and Jerry and beer.

Now Bob and Jerry aren't around much anymore, but the spot is still cool, the local kids they hired make it fun, the beer is still great. And then Big Beer buys it, corporatises it, minimum wage employees, conduct policies, beer is consistently good but nothing fun is coming out of the brewery anymore, the social media is conspicuously watered down in edginess, you get the picture.

The brand you loved has changed, even though it promised it wouldn't.

At that point it's not always a simple matter of turning elsewhere, it's personal. They promised. Now you have to let the world know how stabbed in the back you feel. You have to let everyone know that you have something to show for all those years of brand loyalty, your dignity. It has nothing to do with the breweries selling out, it is always about the individual and their disappointment, anger, frustration, grief, and so on.

In that sense maybe it makes a little more sense why someone would stop supporting a certain brand, and say awful things about it publicly.

I love good beer, I'm incapable of caring less who made it. My cousin brews awesome beer and I still like what some of Goose Island does, doesn't matter to me.

Barcelona Craft Beer

We were in Europe recenlty on a country hoop tour and I got the chance to test what Barcelona had to offer. We hit quite a few of the craft beer spots.

Here's where we went and what we thought:

  • Biercab (In Eixample): Great craft beer bar with a large tap list. I want to say 20-30 beers on tap. Lots of local/Spanish breweries. Try the cod balls and octopus!
  • Garage Brewing: Awesome brewpub with a lot of variation in styles. Some of the best beer we had in Spain Bonus for this. There's an awesome little bar in the Gothic quarter the serves Garage beer called Carlos and Matildas. I'd highly recommend sitting out on the Terrace, having a pint and enjoying the atmosphere.
  • BlackLab (Barcelona – near the Aquarium): Decent beers and ok food, close to the downtown area
  • Naparbier (Eixample): Cool bar/restaurant with a kind of biker theme… Some pretty high quality food and solid beers… Bit expensive for food
  • Barcelona Beer Company (Raval): Ok beer, ok food.
  • Chivuo's (Gracia): Cool little place off the beaten track a bit.. Stumbled upon it on our walk up to Parc Guell. They brew a few of their own beers and have others on tap. Good food as well.

We also hit Brewdog and Mikkeller.

Both of which are cool bars but not local breweries. Another place I'd mention is Caravelle in Raval. It's more of a little restaurant but they brew a few house beers themselves as well. Awesome food (tacos!) and vibe. Happy drinking and enjoy Barcelona!

I actually found a beer guide of Barcelona after we left. Which only makes me want to vist again sometime. This time though I would like to make it the primary vacation destination. Though I think that it will take a while. The kids are crying to go to Flordia. I am sure you can guess why.

For not I will just have to dream.

Here are my notes for next time:

  • Lambicus, best Belgian Bottle shop.
  • Roses i Torrades, Bottle shop.
  • 2D2Dspuma, Bottle shop.
  • BierCaB, best bar in Spain.
  • NaparBCN, best beerpub in Spain.

Always with limited collaborations between famous brewers.

Breweries and beers you must taste from Spain: La Calavera: "medical stout", "batard chardonnay" Montseny: any variants of "Mala Vida" Guineu: "Montserrat", "Black Velvet" and others Naparbier: "Back in Black", and any other. La Quince: "SweetDreams", "Horny Pilsner", and any other. Dougalls: "Session Stout", and others Laugar: "Aupa Tovarisch", and others. Reptilian: "Apokalypse", and others. Ales Agullons: There are blended with lambic Cantillon. Yria: any beer.