The COVID-19 pandemic has put breweries in a tough spot, and it has forced many to get creative. A huge part of that creativity is finding new ways to get beers into the hands of people who want one. That’s harder than it sounds with bar sales all but gone, taprooms closed, and in-person sales of small-batch releases difficult. (In addition to laws that can stifle a brewery’s ability to sell out of their taproom in many states.)
In that spirit, Firestone Walker, which ranked 10th on Zymurgy magazine’s list of the best breweries in the US last year, has launched the Brewmaster’s Reserve club. It’ll bring special beers from Firestone right to your doorstep, a bit like you might expect from a wine club. The brewery, a part of Duvel Moortgat, has already opened membership. Though, it’s limited to the first 1,000 who sign up.
The concept isn’t without precedent. It’ll be familiar to anyone who has subscribed to a wine club or has a local brewery that dabbles in similar offerings. Still, it’s not something you see often, especially a program focused on hard-to-find bottles and exclusive releases. The Brewmaster’s Reserve club is “dedicated to ‘the best of the best'” from Firestone, bringing its “most interesting beers” to its “most passionate fans,” its announcement says.
Unfortunately, this club is only available to California residents. (Though, if you’re interested and not in California, there might be brewers in your area that offering something akin to this, like Fair State Co-op’s Journeys + Sidequests or Threes Brewing’s Beer of the Month.) Subscriptions will close up on February 26 at midnight if the brewery doesn’t max-out its open slots first.
Also, it’s going to set you back $599 for the year. You’ll land eight curated collections of beer with 27 individual small-batch beers, 14 of which are only available through Brewmaster’s Reserve. Each box comes with glassware and access to an online tasting session with Brynildson and his team. Additionally, Firestone says the first collection will include the 2021 Parabola alongside a pair of Parabola variants: Double Barrel Parabola and Amburana Parabola. You can preview other packages on the Firestone site, including some wild ales, the Terroir Collection, and some alluring barrel-aged beers.