Buffalo Wild Wings Vs. Homebrewers?

September 13, 2012

Time to play everyone’s favorite game: Fun With Numbers!

In 2009, there were roughly 307 million people living in the United States.

About 73 percent of those people were of legal drinking age, according to demographic statistics, which equates to approximately 224 million people.

According to Kirin Holdings Company, which is like a Chinese version of Belgian beer powerhouse Anheuser Busch InBev, those 224 million Americans (and, let’s be honest, a few million from a little younger demographic) consumed nearly 6.5 billion gallons in 2009.

According to the American Homebrewers Association, of those 224 million consumers, an estimated 1 million (or .4 percent) of them are homebrewers.

Of those 1 million homebrewers, (at least) 1 of them is named Nate Brennan.

Hey, that’s me!

Yep, I’m a homebrewer. I even put homebrewing in my video cover letter to get this job. And like many a homebrewer, I spend many of my Sunday afternoons either making or drinking (and judging) craft beer. So this Sunday, on a non-brew day due to the recognition of the national holiday (i.e. the first Sunday of the NFL season), I was a bit taken aback when I saw this commercial during a break in game action that depicted a pair of guys watching the game with a homebrewing co-worker.

Like when many people get offended by commercials (which is silly), I was initially a little off-put in the “Hey, I do that!” sense, but the more I watched it, the more I began to agree that it’s not about picking on the little guy at home who likes making beer as a hobby as much as it’s simply showing the virtues of watching “the game” at Buffalo Wild Wings. And with all those huge TVs and delicious wings, that ain’t a bad virtue to focus on. It certainly wasn’t anywhere near as insensitive or divisive as those weird Groupon commercials from the 2011 Super Bowl

BWW’s own description of the commercial on YouTube: “PROTECT THE FOOTBALL. If you don’t make Buffalo Wild Wings your game-time headquarters, you might get stuck watching the game at a co-worker’s house–only to discover that he has a lot to learn when it comes to the art of home brewing.”

And while a minority homebrewers themselves have been a little defensive on the homebrew chat boards (“He goes on homebrew chat boards?!”), most have found the fun in it and are really enjoying the commercial. The boards have been lighting up with at-length discussions about knowing weird homebrewers like the one depicted, which BWW wings they like most, actually trying to come up with their own bratwurst beer recipes (I want to do this now, too), and, perhaps most importantly, that this might open up more people to the world of homebrewing and get them into it.

And when you consider that Buffalo Wild Wings regularly sponsors beer festivals (like the one in the Twin Cities where I enjoyed their Blazin’ Challenge), and that those chat rooms are filled with fanbases as devout and passionate as your average 13-year-old girl is to Twilight, all of whom are talking up a storm about the ad, I think we might be able to call this commercial a win for Buffalo Wild Wings.

Agree? Disagree? Let us know in the comments!