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Flying Dog Beer Slams Sierra Nevada, Other NC Breweries

Photo: Flying Dog.

Photo: Flying Dog.

By NC Beer Magazine

ASHEVILLE – The Flying Dog Brewery, which is well known for over the top marketing tactics and advertising, recently took a swipe at North Carolina based breweries in an online advertisement on Facebook.

The advertisement is for Flying Dog’s new beer called “The Truth Imperial IPA,” which the company describes as including “some of the most distinct Pacific Northwest varietals available to craft brewers today” in terms of hops.

In the banner which includes a state outline with an “x” through it, the company seems to be making sure that no one thinks that this beer in made in Asheville, North Carolina.

“This beer was not brewed at our Asheville brewery because we don’t have one,” said Flying Dog.

Many Facebook commenters who saw the banner couldn’t quite figure out the strategy behind the campaign.

“This was a dumb idea,” said one person bluntly in a comment.

“Does not compute,” said another person.

Other people thought that Flying Dog was trying to make fun of Asheville, North Carolina beermakers, or North Carolina in general.

“Way to alienate the Carolinas,” said another Facebook friend. “How clever.”

“Come on, you know there was a better way to handle this that wouldn’t piss off one of the best beer states in the country,” said another beer drinker.

In response, Flying Dog Brewery made a comment in an attempt to clarify their position.

“We don’t have an expansion brewery in Asheville,” said Flying Dog in their own comments section.  ”Get it?”

Given that statement, with the map and banner, Flying Dog which used to be in Colorado, may have been trying to take a swipe at their old California rival Sierra Nevada, which is opening a major brewery for the East Coast in the Asheville area.

In addition to Sierra Nevada, New Belgium of Colorado is building a new brewery near Asheville and Oskar Blues of Colorado already has a brewery in Brevard, North Carolina.

“They aren’t trying to alienate North Carolinians, it’s a reference to a rival brewery, chill folks,” explained Facebook user Jack Friend.

Despite their attempt at poking a little fun at…well, whoever, the campaign may have backfired.  It didn’t exactly create any new fans for Flying Dog in North Carolina and even resulted in some good comments posted about Sierra Nevada on Flying Dog’s own Facebook page.

“I think it’s brilliant what Sierra is doing,” said a Facebook user named Adam about their new Asheville brewery.  ”This allows beer enthusiasts on the east coast to be able to procure some of their very limited beers. Prost, Sierra Nevada! Keep brewing outstanding beer. Which, is more I can say for some.” ::

UPDATE: Only a few hours after posting the banner that appears above, Flying Dog evidently removed the North Carolina picture and all of the comments beneath it from their Facebook page as they are no longer available.

Flying Dog also issued the following statement on their Facebook page:

“We are releasing a new Imperial IPA called The Truth.

What appealed to us about this concept of the truth is that as a society, we are constantly blasted with hype, lies, and exaggerations. And we’re expected to swallow it as the truth.

What we learned today is that an inarguable truth was reacted to in very subjective ways.

In one simple statement, we managed to offend the following:
A. North Carolina beer
B. Breweries already in, moving to, or expanding to North Carolina
C. The entire state of North Carolina
D. And probably people who live in South Carolina, but work in North Carolina

If you were offended by Flying Dog today and are not included in the list above, please let us know.”

Source: NC Beer Magazine

23 Responses to Flying Dog Beer Slams Sierra Nevada, Other NC Breweries

  1. Robert August 7, 2013 at 12:42 PM

    “Flying Dog may have been trying to take a swipe at their old Colorado rival Sierra Nevada”

    old colorado rival… New Belgium perhaps?

  2. Hipster Brewfus (@HipsterBrewfus) August 7, 2013 at 3:29 PM

    I think people from NC need to get their panties out of a twist. It was a tongue in cheek poke for fun. Relax, it’s just beer.

  3. Chris Horner August 7, 2013 at 7:46 PM

    Really? So you think it would be OK for a brewery to post a pic of YOUR state with an X through it – showing that state will not get their special release….you make a special release announcement to show how you’re excluding the fastest growing beer market in the country? Fine, then I don’t have to sell your product in my store.

    Don’t forget, FD USED to be a Colorado brewery, so their ‘tongue in cheek’ comments are quite hypocritical.

  4. barleyhollow August 7, 2013 at 9:13 PM

    I’m from NC, and trust me, nothing in a twist here over Flying Dog. Too much good local beer to bother getting upset. Hey, they got some press. Too bad is wasn’t for their beers. Cheers.

  5. NC beer dude August 7, 2013 at 9:34 PM

    As a North Carolinian I will no longer drink or promote ye consumption of their beer. Plus it is subpar to the expansion breweries building in Asheville. Marketing guy for Flying Dog should be canned. That’s the #truth

  6. Logan Watson August 7, 2013 at 11:09 PM

    Sierra Nevada is the best, but I will have to say that Flying Dog Easy IPA is the best session IPA, please make make more. Stop worrying about other brewieres’ products.

  7. Paul August 8, 2013 at 9:51 AM

    I had no idea NC was so sensitive & thin skinned…,….

  8. Doug S. August 8, 2013 at 10:04 AM

    As an Asheville resident, I can’t believe anybody would get offended at this. Give me a break. If anything it could be taken as a compliment that they are acknowledging Asheville as a major beer hub.

  9. Hilltop Brewfus August 8, 2013 at 10:30 AM

    I live in Asheville, and I’m a serious beer fan, micro and regional in particular. No offense taken by this unusual approach, but then I’ve never even HEARD of Flying Dog Beer. Plenty of choices here that don’t have to be trucked in from thousands of miles away.

  10. Chris Lee August 8, 2013 at 12:33 PM

    It’s just dumb to put a picture of a state with an “X” through it. That’s almost 10 million people your putting an “X” over. No matter what your message is, that’s a negative image. Just simply not a good campaign.

  11. Kevin D. August 8, 2013 at 12:34 PM

    I kinda get it, with a recent big trend to build breweries in Asheville, it’s like Flying Dog saying we don’t follow the trend.

    However this was the worst way to say it and is offenseful to North Carolinian’s especially in Asheville. Marketing dept. for them cost them a lot because they didn’t take time to think this through.

  12. bobtshirt August 8, 2013 at 1:52 PM

    I like Flying Dog beer, but I live in and love North Carolina, and I won’t forget this when I’m at the store trying to decide what beer to buy. Being pissed that someone put an “X” through a picture of your state as part of a marketing campaign isn’t being thin skinned. Also, that Sierra Nevada Torpedo IPA is pretty tasty….

  13. Josh August 8, 2013 at 2:40 PM

    I agree with @Chris Lee. It’s the image itself that’s offensive, not the message behind it.

  14. Jeff August 8, 2013 at 3:15 PM

    I thought this was supposed to be a beer community that supports other breweries and their progression? Not sure why you would slam a brewery who is making attempts to provide the east coasters with the same excellent product we get here in the west. Sierra Nevada is one of the most innovative breweries out there and we should celebrate those innovations.

  15. MF Yeti August 8, 2013 at 4:21 PM

    @ Chris Horner: They aren’t saying “You don’t get this”. They’re saying that it wasn’t made in an offshoot production brewery in your state, which is becoming ever so popular because of low land cost and an easier distribution for West Coast breweries. That’s it. There’s no slam on NC or any of your local breweries. It was literally only about the offshoot producers.

  16. Robert August 8, 2013 at 4:45 PM

    As an Asheville resident and a huge beer fan I can honestly say I’m getting pretty tired of the whole beer scene here. It seems that every other day we hear about a new brewery opening somewhere in town. And now, all of a sudden, we’ve gotten so full of ourselves with beer snobbery that we can’t take a joke. We’re now the Bill Bellichek of beer – brilliant but no sense of humor. Too bad really.

  17. marbolt August 8, 2013 at 5:27 PM

    We have to many fine breweries here in Ca. It’s a big problem, not enough water left to use in the toilets. That’s where Flying Dog comes in….

  18. Willy August 8, 2013 at 6:59 PM

    Stay classy Flying Dog…….. I live on the west coast and own bars and can’t wait until somebody tries to sell me your product. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out!

  19. Nick August 8, 2013 at 7:00 PM

    As a Virginian, I’ve always held the belief that North Carolina sucks and its residents are a bunch of crybabies who can’t take a joke. So thanks for proving that true.

  20. Bradford August 8, 2013 at 9:32 PM

    As a North Carolinian, I’m just sitting here drinking beer.


  21. Mike Cothran August 9, 2013 at 5:07 AM

    It’s a shame that craft breweries are out there slandering each other. I tend to think it’s the marketing people out there who are really messing up our beer culture. I know as a brewer, that I collaborate with other brewers any chance I get.
    Being from Colorado, I kind of see this as Flying Dog being upset that they f’d up and left Colorado for a crappy town in Maryland. Haha. I also find it funny that Flying Dog may not be following the trend to brew in NC, but they certainly are following the trend of the other two breweries who are currently selling the most popular hoppy brands in the country! Now that’s the “Truth”

  22. Anonymous Coward August 9, 2013 at 11:18 AM

    Nice scoop, NC Beer. However, the self-seriousness of posters offended by this makes me want to crack open an MGD and rave about its mouthfeel. Your offendedness offends me. No babies were harmed in the making of that Flying Dog post, no voters were disenfranchised, no lovingly-cultivated brewers’ beards were involuntarily shaven. To quote the immortal Jeffrey Lebowski, we’re talking about BEVERAGES here, man! I’d tell ya’ll to chill and have a beer, but…

    Ashevillain OUT

  23. Jed August 9, 2013 at 6:02 PM

    I can’t tell you the last time I had a Flying Dog beer. Seems like they’re a little jealous of breweries smart enough to have an East Coast outfit. Probably shouldn’t have a cynical a** running ther PR either.