The Great New London Brewing Company
New London, Contract/Partnership Brewed at Cottrell Brewery, Pawcatuck
In case you missed or glossed over my intro page about Connecticut beers, I wrote that several of “our” beers’ provenance is somewhat tricky to figure. As if on purpose to prove that point, the first page I’m writing for this section of CTMQ will make it clear.
The Great New London Brewing Company is a real company with real people working to promote it. It is indeed located in New London and it’s run by a guy who co-owns a flower shop/package store there. But neither he nor New London has an actual brewery. So what’s a beer-loving flower shop/package store co-owner to do?
He partners with my man Charlie Buffum up in Pawcatuck on the Rhode Island border at Cottrell Brewery. Now, in addition to their own labeled beers, Cottrell brews a ton of contract beers; from Narragansett to a Trader Joe’s imprint to GW Beer. But this particular beer, we’re told, is not a true “contract” beer but rather a “partnership.”
What that means is that the guys from TGNLBC had Cottrell brew some different versions of their vision and the guys from TGNLBC tasted and tested and ultimately decided upon what is their first beer: Safe Harbor American Blonde Ale.
Okay then, so is it a contract beer or is it truly an independent beer from the Great New London Brewing Company? I don’t frickin’ know. Why do I delve into this stuff so much? Does anyone care?
Or does anyone care that they deem their first (and at this time, in July 2012) and only beer the “official beer of the Whaling City?” Personally, I think that is only setting themselves up for consternation if and when they contract/partner brew up something else in the future.
But that’s their problem, not ours.