Cover Story Notebook: Work to Your Strengths

In a ongoing series, Brewer will take a small note from interviews of some of the cover stories it has run and give a small tidbit that didn’t make the issue, but is still worth diving into.

In Fal Allen’s second stint with Anderson Valley, he said he saw a vision that owner Trey White was building and he liked how White was pushing for innovation. It was something that sparked Allen, who first worked at AVBC from 2000 to 2005 and returned in 2010.

“I come from Seattle, which was a lot more beer-centric than the middle of nowhere California and things had already started to turn up there and change,” he recalls of the landscape of the craft beer world nearly a decade ago. “Anderson Valley at that time did make an IPA and they were making some beers that were a little bit of a stretch, but there was a lot more going up in Seattle where I’d been.”

Allen started a barrel program in 2001 and they started doing some more innovative things but things were still pretty sedate.

Fast forward a decade and after being able to spread his wings in innovation, going back to work with White was intriguing.

It also gave him perspective and Allen knows his strengths. During an interview with Brewer for the March/April 2019 cover story, we asked about how the Boonville, California brewery gauged sales and trends nationwide. Allen made sure to point out he is a brewer and his job is the beer. He leaves a lot of those worries to White and the other parts of management.

“I help Trey wherever he needs me to with sales but I’m not a sales guy,” Allen said. “He’s like, ‘You’re the Brewmaster. Go do a Brewmaster dinner or go out and work in these markets.’

“I do and I get to see a lot of the market but I don’t have the the overall picture that he does certainly.”

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