Left Hand Brewing has partnered with Great Brands to expand its international distribution into Sweden with Left Hand’s flagship brand, Milk Stout Nitro, which will be available in 12 oz bottles this month in Systembolaget—government-owned liquor stores in Sweden.
Left Hand Brewing Company was founded in Longmont, Colorado in 1993, and is one of the original pioneers in craft brewing growing from a homebrew kit in the beginning to becoming one of the top 50 craft breweries in the U.S. Great Brands was established as a company in 2008 and provides Sweden and Scandinavia with beer from around the world including the U.S. and the United Kingdom.
“We’re thrilled to introduce craft beer enthusiasts in Sweden to Left Hand Brewing and Milk Stout Nitro,” said Jill Preston, director of marketing at Left Hand Brewing. “Nitro beer is an experience in and of itself. It starts with a mesmerizing cascade and culminates in a super smooth encounter with each and every sip. It’s important to remember to hard pour from the bottle at 180 degrees into a 16 oz glass in order to activate the nitrogen and achieve the optimal drinking experience.”
This isn’t the first time Left Hand has reached out internationally with beers before now in such places as Great Britain, Ireland, Czech Republic, Germany, Norway, Canada, Japan, China, and Korea. The reason for Left Hand to expand into Sweden was because of its next door neighbor, Norway, which already had distribution through Great Brands and made logistical sense to expand in that direction.
“We have had a long relationship with Left Hand, and Milk Stout was the reason in the beginning, so to be able to introduce Milk Stout Nitro across Sweden is amazing. It will be a fun adventure to make America’s Stout into Sweden’s Stout of choice!” said Jörgen Hasselqvist, co-founder and marketing manager at Great Brands.
In 2011, Left Hand became the first American craft brewery to encapsulate the nitro draft experience when it debuted Milk Stout Nitro in the bottle and is now the number one selling craft stout in the U.S.
“We definitely think people are drinking better beer as awareness of craft beer continues to grow. The more Left Hand is available overseas, the more people will try it and request it. We’ve seen this ever since we started distributing internationally,” Preston said. “Stouts in Sweden are one of the most popular styles of beer, which makes sense because of the climate. Milk Stout Nitro is the number one craft stout in the U.S., and we hope to claim the same in Sweden soon.”
Left Hand introduced themselves to Sweden with Wake Up Dead Nitro on a limited basis, but Milk Stout Nitro will be there full-time. They believe there is room to expand into the market with additional beers once they have established a stronger brand presence. So far the feedback and sales have been strong.
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