Brewbound Podcast Episode 21: Fergal Murray on Building Iconic Brands and US Brewing Trends

Fergal Murray spent 31 years with Diageo Ireland, as both a Guinness master brewer and a global brand ambassador. During that time, he poured perfect pints of the iconic Irish Dry Stout for former President Barack Obama, Queen Elizabeth II, Jimmy Fallon, and Tom Cruise, among many other international dignitaries and celebrities.

But his brewing industry expertise stretches far beyond the draft handle.

Over the course of his more-than-three-decades career with Diageo, Murray worked alongside the global marketing and sales teams to help drive awareness of the Guinness brand, and to educate wholesalers and retailers across the world.

These days, Murray is consulting for small breweries and distilleries across the world, most notably with Wachusett Brewing in Westminster, Massachusetts.

On a recent trip to the U.S., Murray stopped by the Brewbound offices to chat about building brands on-premise, the emerging non-alcoholic beer trend, and the tug of war between the desire to satiate consumer demand for innovative products with the need to hone and perfect core recipes.

“Every high-performance something or other comes out with something new with an improvement,” he said. “Brewer — tell me what you’ve done to make your beer better.”

In episode 21 of the Brewbound Podcast, Murray discusses the changes to the American beer scene that he’s witnessed during his long career in beer, his latest collaboration with Wachusett and innovations that could drive future category growth.

Also in this episode: Brewbound editors Chris Furnari and Justin Kendall share their takeaways from the 16th Annual Beer Business Daily Summit in San Diego.

Listen to episode 21 of the Brewbound Podcast above, as well as on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, Spotify, and Soundcloud. New episodes of the Brewbound Podcast, which is co-hosted by Furnari and Kendall, are published every Thursday.

Episode 22, featuring Russian River Brewing co-owner Natalie Cilurzo, will be released on Thursday, February 7.

For questions, comments or suggestions, please email podcast@brewbound.com.

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The Brewbound Podcast features interviews with beer industry executives and entrepreneurs, along with highlights and commentary from the weekly news. New episodes every Thursday.