The West

The Lip - BrewDog barks back
The Lip - BrewDog barks back

Long-time beer drinker Ross Lewis casts his eye over the kegs from here and abroad.

Catch up with other beers on The Sip Archive

There is no such thing as bad publicity.

At least that is what Scottish wizards BrewDog are experiencing following their loss in a recent battle over beer labelling.

The Portman Group, which controls drinks producers in the UK, found that BrewDog had breached their code by encouraging anti-social behaviour and binge drinking in the advertising for their Dead Pony Club Ale.

The beer was promoted by Scotland’s largest independent brewery with slogans such as “rip it up down empty streets”, “drink fast, live fast” and “we believe faster is better”.

But instead of copping the decision on the chin, BrewDog have gone on the offensive with a strong retort via an open letter to the Portman Group.

“On behalf of BrewDog PLC and its 14,691 individual shareholders, I would like to issue a formal apology to the Portman Group for not giving a s… about today’s ruling,” wrote BrewDog co-founder James Watt.

“Indeed, we are sorry for never giving a s… about anything the Portman Group has to say, and treating all of its statements with callous indifference and nonchalance.”

“Unfortunately, the Portman Group is a gloomy gaggle of killjoy jobsworths, funded by navel-gazing international drinks giants. Their raison d’être is to provide a diversion for the true evils of this industry, perpetrated by the gigantic faceless brands that pay their wages.

“Blinkered by this soulless mission, they treat beer drinkers like brain dead zombies and vilify creativity and competition. Therefore, we have never given a second thought to any of the grubby newspeak they disseminate periodically.”

“While the Portman Group lives out its days deliberating whether a joke on a bottle of beer is responsible or irresponsible use of humour, at BrewDog we will just get on with brewing awesome beer and treating our customers like adults. I’m sure that makes Henry Ashworth cry a salty tear into his shatterproof tankard of Directors as he tries to enforce his futile and toothless little marketing code, but we couldn’t give a s… about that, either.”

The Portman Group decision will force BrewDog to adjust their Dead Pony Club Ale packaging and stores have been advised not to purchase any more of the brand in its current form.

But the attention on the labelling and promotion is a little hard to understand for a beer that sits in the mid-alcoholic range of 3.8 per cent.

On a more positive front, BrewDog, is getting into retail with its first craft beer shop opening in London.

The store stocks over 250 different beers, the opportunity to buy growlers and schools.

It is the first of a series of stores BrewDog is planning world wide.

The West Australian

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