Sightlines — Sierra Nevada’s brewmaster since 1983, Steve Dresler, to Retire in 2017

Michael Kiser

THE GIST
Announcing via press release last week, Sierra Nevada have revealed that Brewmaster Steve Dresler will step down from his position in 2017. Dresler has worked for Sierra Nevada since 1983 and under his stewardship the California brewery has won 8 World Beer Cup awards and 31 GABF medals.

WHY IT MATTERS
Sierra Nevada, America’s 3rd largest craft brewery are going through a lengthy period of transition. Longstanding beers such as its classic Sierra Nevada Pale Ale are seeing a slight downward trend in sales (as are most mature flagships), while new brands such as its Otra Vez gose are rapidly gaining in both popularity and market share.

Perhaps most significantly, the family owned brewery is gradually being handed over to its second generation. Sole owner Ken Grossman’s children Brian and Sierra are to run the company once he retires. Brian Grossman is already managing operations at Sierra’s facility in Mills River, North Carolina. We spoke to Ken’s brother Steve about how this change will affect the business in a Critical Drinking interview earlier this year. 

Now the brewing team in Chico will also begin to experience this transition as Dresler leaves some pretty large shoes to fill. Will Sierra be able to adapt to this transition and is this a sign that America’s old guard of craft breweries, like Stone did just last month with MItch Steele leaving, will soon be adapting to similar personnel

— Matthew Curtis


 

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SIERRA NEVADA’S BREWMASTER ANNOUNCES RETIREMENT – Via All About Beer