A man known by most in the craft beer industry simply as “Pete” has returned to the beer business. This time around, Pete Slosberg (of Pete’s Wicked Ale fame) is betting on a lower alcohol product that is slowly beginning to become more popular as a craft beer style.
Earlier this year Slosberg began crafting Mavericks beer, a line of session offerings that clock in at less than 4 percent alcohol by volume. The new line is an extension of products already available from Half Moon Bay Brewing Company. When the owners of the Coastal California brewpub wanted to begin outside distribution of its beer, they asked Slosberg for assistance.
“My advice to them was: you are crazy! You are nuts,” Slosberg said.
Apparently deciding to join them in their nuttiness, Slosberg suggested that Half Moon Bay Brewing create a line of session beers, which would help differentiate the company from the 2,400-plus other craft breweries already fighting for limited shelf space. The inspiration, Slosberg said, was born out of occasional bike trips across the Golden Gate Bridge and routine beer sampling of higher-alcohol offerings from Marin Brewing Company.
“After bike riding 25 or 30 miles and having a great beer of 9 percent, I never felt comfortable getting back on my bike afterwards,” he said. “It made me think, wouldn’t it be great if I could ride somewhere, enjoy a beer and continue riding?”
And so, Mavericks was born.
The name of the brand not only reflects Half Moon Bay Brewing’s close proximity to the famous surfing location by the same name, but also the idea of being a somewhat rebellious as a brewer, according to Slosberg.
“I love mavericks as a word, as a noun,” he said. “It’s sort of like wicked, it has so many meanings. I thought, not only can we be attractive to beach enthusiasts or surfing enthusiasts but doing things in a maverick way could be fun for marketing.”
To help grow the brand Slosberg enlisted the help of Will Shelton, the co-founder of Massachusetts-based High & Mighty Beer Co. Shelton has since left High & Mighty to take over as President for Mavericks.
The Mavericks line currently consists of three offerings: Pace Setter Belgian Style Wit Beer, Back in the Saddle Rye Pale Ale and Pit Stop Chocolate Porter. Each beer is 3.75 percent ABV are currently available in limited quantities on draft and in cans in the San Francisco Bay Area.
In a video interview with Brewbound, Slosberg discusses the brand’s beginnings and his plan to prove the session concept.