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Why I, a Hardcore Beer Geek, Love This American TV Series 作为一个资深精酿饮者,我仿佛在硅谷里看到了一点经济学的端倪

The first time I heard about the HBO's hit comedy Silicon Valley was in June 2016, when TheBrewGirl got invited to attend the 7th Global Entrepreneur Summit at, you guessed it, the Silicon Valley. Obviously the entire start-up world loved the show, so the cast was invited to the conference for a face-to-face with fans, aka, struggling startups like us.

HBO的情景喜剧硅谷(Silicon Valley)让很多创业者看到自己的影子: 一群有梦想有能力的极客窝在利欲熏心的房东的大豪斯/孵化器里,一路打怪升级. 每每掉落陷阱,然后绝处逢生. 去年6月,成立刚刚一年的TheBrewGirl被邀请参加了在硅谷举办的全球创业峰会. 竟然 "撞上"了全体卡司,更让我们觉得和此剧有缘.

I began watching the show and immediately fell in love, for a reason my startup friends would roll their eyes at: there are many clues in this show made me believe that it's been made by and for beer geeks.

一开始我也跟大家一样,被起伏的情节和黑色幽默吸引,然而两集过后如果你还没发现这是一部处处暗埋伏笔的精酿宣传片,那我们可能无法做朋友了.

CLUE 1: THE ALWAYS-THERE POSTER

伏笔1: 频频出现的海报

Started with 2 guys homebrewing in a garage, then sold to the 3rd biggest beer company in 20 years. Sounds familiar? Yup, a typical modern brewery success story-- except that the acquisition in 2015 scored Ballast Point $1 Billion, the largest sum in the craft beer history. I can tell why the house of incubator have it on the wall: if this is not a startup's dream-come-true story, I don't know what else is.

Ballast Point的酒厂创业史可以写成一本精酿打怪教科书. 由家酿出身的两位创始人在自家后院开设第一家酿造厂,到被以10亿美金巨额收购,只花了"短短"不到20年时间(和百威的140年比起来确实很短). 因而在极客之家,被奉为偶像供在墙上也是理所当然.

Ballast Point Brewery in San Diego

BALLAST POINT

Founded in San Diego in the 90s and became famous for brewing West Coast style sessionable ales. Thanks to the acquisition made by Constellation Brands in 2015, beer drinkers around the world now can easily enjoy a bottle of Ballast Point's famous Sculpin IPA with the price almost the same as you pay in its Californian taproom.

伴随加州精酿大潮一同诞生于90年代的San Diego, 擅长酿造轻快的西海岸风格啤酒.虽说已是颇具规模的精酿酒厂,却因2015年,美国第三大啤酒公司Constellation Brands的巨额收购使其一夜扬名世界. 至今仍是精酿史上并购金额之最.

CLUE 2: WHAT DO FOUNDERS DRINK

伏笔2: 创始人喝什么

First of all, Goose Island is the only beer brand in this show that's not from California (if you spotted another, do leave a message to let me know!) As important as "LOCAL" is to the American beer geeks, there're 2 things about beer no one would resist: fresh & affordable. By drinking a Goose Island's IPA, Richard shows us a great example of how to be a competent founder: save money and see bigger pictures than everyone else.

首先,Goose Island是剧中出现为数不多的非加州厂牌. 美国精酿消费的一个重要特征就是Local,毕竟谁不愿意在家门口就享用新鲜又实惠的啤酒呢.然而得益于金主老公百威英博宽广的分销及物流渠道,相信主角Richard面前经常摆着的这瓶绿色鹅岛,一定价廉物美堪比百威. 作为创始人既要稳重大气,又要开源节流,所以与这款全美销量第一的IPA真的很配呢.

Goose Island Brewery in Chicago

GOOSE ISLAND

Although a similar story to Ballast Point, the beer tycoon ABI's acquisition of Chicago brewery Goose Island in 2011 became really controversial when the Goose started "migrating" and opening its brewpubs all over the world. Will a lady still remain beautiful and elegant after she married to a super rich man and accompanied him to the other side of the world? I don't have the definite answer, but Melania Trump looks fine to me!

创立于1988年的芝加哥,鹅岛似乎一开始就注定不是屌丝品牌.专注酿造欧式风格啤酒,却时常被认为老派守旧.2011年与世界第一啤酒公司百威英博联姻,净收嫁妆3800万美金.随后在百威一手策划的全球系列新潮跨界中,成为90后消费者最热爱的精酿品牌.产品诚可贵,包装价更高,若为金钱故,两者皆可抛.

CLUE 3: YOU SHOULD JUDGE A PERSON BY HIS CHOICE OF BEER

伏笔3: 是什么人,看你选的啤酒就知道

Here come 3 of my favorite supporting characters:

这部剧的一大特色就是: 每个配角都身怀绝技来和主角抢戏.比如下面出场的这几位:

Who drinks imperial stouts at daytime and still writes seamless codes? A guy that believes "as long as God isn't involved and there is beer".

魔鬼教的Gilfoyle腹黑而愤世嫉俗,却屡屡在危机关头力挽狂澜. 他的必杀技就是--

一边喝9%酒精度的Old Rasputin帝国世涛,一边清醒地工作.

Who chooses beer by its colorful labels? A guy that drools at every girl and never gets one.

永远走在漫漫撩菜长路上的Dinesh,喝什么酒不重要,关键是酒标要有颜值.

Who owns $1 Billion and only drinks an IPA to celebrate an important deal? A cheap asshole that knows nothing about craft beer.

坐拥10亿身家的投资人,在庆祝的时刻却只想要开一瓶IPA,只有两个可能: 不懂精酿, 而且是个大坑子. 事实证明他!就!是!

CLUE 4: YOU WILL GET THERE, ONE DAY

伏笔4: 有钱才有权利追求精神世界

Can't say there's no hierarchy in the beer world, even though the most prestigious beer in the world might cost you merely 1/3 as much as a mediocre bottle of wine, top-of-the-Pyramid beer still makes some people willing to pay anything to have a sip. In this case, Pliny the Elder is what the company gets when they raised the A round.

第三季时终于拿到了A轮,也有钱雇佣各个种族的员工了,于是大BOSS酒出现了.

Why Pliny the Elder is the king of Californian beer?

Pliny the Elder为什么是加州人民的精神食粮

  • Use to be a "Blind Pig": Who doesn't have an embarrassing childhood nickname? But as soon as Russian River's owner Vinnie Cilurzo decided to introduce his most proud child to the world, he named it after the famous Roman naturalist, scholar and writer Pliny the Elder, who happened to also create the botanical name for hops! Every great beer deserves a great name.
  • "Making more beer would mean taking on more debt, stress and work": co-owner Natalie Cilurzo explains the scarcity of the popular Russian River beer. Considering this beer costs averagely 18 times the original price on black market (500RMB/bottle in China if you're curious), some 1-hour drive and couple-hours waiting under the warm sunlight doesn't sound that bad for Californians.
  • 地处加州葡萄酒酒产区的一朵奇葩: Russian River酒厂主人兼酿酒师Vinnie Cilurzo身于葡萄酒世家却钟情啤酒.他的酿造前卫且精准.如果没有他,如今Sonoma地区的精酿也许会是另一种局面.
  • 酒名看起来就很有文化: 虽然前身叫Blind Pig(盲猪),但从2000年正式推出市场时便搭上了头衔堪比高晓松的Pliny the Elder-- 这位古罗马著名史学家/自然学家/文学大师,首次用拉丁文记述并定义了"酒花"一词.
  • 四大酒花的完美协奏: 常年位列榜首的满分双倍IPA.除了完美的配比,还有得天独厚的自家后院种植酒花,新鲜无人能比.一旦离开加州便一瓶难求,当地人能不骄傲吗?
 

Well done choosing craft beer for every occasion! With the return of the 4th season, let's look forward to what new beers will we meet on the show!

历经万难也未到西天,幸好有啤酒在身边. HBO已经续订且在今年4月推出了硅谷第四季,我们一起期待随着剧情反转又会有哪些精酿啤酒出现吧!

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