The Business of Beer with Blaine Stansel, CEO and Co-Founder of Roughtail Brewing Co.

The Business of Beer, Episode 54: Blaine Stansel, CEO and Co-Founder of Roughtail Brewing Co.

roughtail blaine taphunter podcastIn this episode of the Business of Beer with Andy “The Beerman” Coppock, we are joined by CEO and Co-Founder of Roughtail Brewing, Blaine Stansel. Blaine joins us to talk about how he got started, the backward brewing laws of Oklahoma, the impetus for switching to cans and more!
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Show Notes:

– Oklahoma isn’t exactly a hotbed for craft beer. How did you get started?
– Oklahoma City wasn’t your first choice, how did you wind up there?
– Oklahoma has some pretty archaic and backwards laws. How do you fight through that?
– Tell me about some of the bizarre regulations you deal with.
– No option to self distribute
– We must sell to any distro who wants our product. Even if some distro doesn’t have A/C.
– We can’t sell beer directly to customers, unless is 3.2% abw (4% ABV) or less.
– Only a brewery can sell growlers, and they can only be filled with 3.2, even a bar selling 3.2 can’t fill growlers. There is a separate law prohibiting selling a beer in a container other than the container it came in.
– Liquor stores can sell anything under 3.2, not even mixers, and grocery can’t sell anything over 3.2 so to make a margarita you have to go to the liquor store to get the tequila and go to the grocery store to get mixer, limes, etc.
– Anytime we do a special release we have to allocate the product evenly to any distro who wants it. Typically we have 5 distros pick up on a regular basis, but when we have a special release another 3-4 who we never see take some of the allocation.
– OK is a 4 tier state for anyone outside the state. So instead of just brewery/distro/retail it’s brewery/broker/distro/retail. Unsurprisingly our prices are much higher.
– We have a 13.5% liquor tax for anything over 3.2 on top of the sales tax, so for a pint that’s usually an extra $1. Still have state excise tax too.
– Our wives own the unaffiliated taphouse that just so happens to be in the same building as the brewery, but we have to sell the beer to distro and then buy it back at the taphouse, and unlike most breweries where you expect to get the freshest beer, we have to get what the distro sells to us.
– You guys have made the switch to cans pretty much exclusively. What was the impetus behind that?
– What’s your take on the present and future of independent craft beer?


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