Buffalo Wild Wings Hates On Homebrewers

I was watching the Jets game last night (because suffering is a big part of being a Jets fan), when a commercial came on for Buffalo Wild Wings. They’ve been running a series of ads during football games, all showing people having a great time watching “the game” at theis fried chicken parts emporium, while having unpleasant flashbacks of the other places they used to do it.

There’s a commercial where a couple can’t cheer because they’re watching with friends who have sleeping babies slung around them on papooses, and another where a family is stuck at the home of their stark German neighbors, who make them drink wheat grass and watch the game on a small, pod-like TV while their well-trained son dutifully plays a woodwind instrument.  Creepy!

Then there’s the one you see below, which features two guys forced to watch the game with their Zach-Galifianakis-clone co-worker who’s a homebrewer and cat fancier.  The Homebrewer is wearing goggles and gloves, and has fermenters bubbling over with beer suds littered around his apartment.  He tortures his guests with his odd creations (bratwurst beer, anyone?) while they try to watch the game around his fat kitty, who is perched in front of the screen. 

While it’s a funny spot, it kind of irks me that they get so much wrong in it.  I didn’t appreciate the unrealistic way the fermenters are bubbling over with foam, how The Homebrewer swipes his hand past a foamy carboy and sniffs the bubbles on his fingers and proclaims,  “this one’s ready in two minutes,” and the way the co-workers he’s lured to his brew dungeon ask “you brew your own beer?” with such scorn.  While there’s tons ways to make fun of homebrewers, this attempt feels lazy and uninformed. Well, except the fact that he’s making one guy drink his bratwurst beer – that one’s got homebrew geek written all over it!

On the bright side, at least homebrewing has bubbled up high enough into the public consciousness to warrant a playful jab in a commercial.  I just wish the folks who wrote knew a little bit more about the subject.
You can check out the commercial below – what do you think?  Funny, or dumb?





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Categories: Beer, Home Brew, Home Brewing, Lifestyle


Craft beer nerd, frequent beer blogger and occasional home brewer.

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50 Comments on “Buffalo Wild Wings Hates On Homebrewers”

  1. rob
    October 9, 2012 at 9:52 am #

    I think it’s hilarious and I’m a home brewer.
    I’ll keep watching their website for a bratwurst beer recipe.

    • October 9, 2012 at 9:55 am #

      I think it’s funny as well, Rob. I just wish there was a little bit more homebrew insider-knowledge going on – there’s LOTS of material to work with!

      • rob
        October 9, 2012 at 9:59 am #

        Don’t fear the foam!

  2. October 9, 2012 at 9:57 am #

    “Bratwust Beer? Why didn’t I think of that first?” — Sam Calagione

    • October 9, 2012 at 9:59 am #

      Heck Sam, you even missed out on the Rocky Mountain Oyster Stout.

      • October 9, 2012 at 11:18 am #

        But there’s still time for being first to brew a Bacon Cheeseburger Porter, something Nicole Margeson came up with on our facebook page in response to my pizza beer post.

  3. October 9, 2012 at 9:59 am #

    I think it’s funny. The fact that they went so over the top with it keeps it in check for me in regards to “slamming home brewers.”

    The fact that the guy clearly knows nothing about making beer is what clues in all the non-beer people into realizing that it’s a crazy guy, not that homebrewing is what’s crazy.

    Being offended by this is like being a parent and being offended by the one with the babies or being a dog owner and being offended by the one with the vicious dog.

    In conclusion, I’m cool with it. Especially since the BWW down the road from me has been serving some pretty good beer the past couple years.

    • October 9, 2012 at 11:20 am #

      I’ve only been to BWW once, and it was a work lunch, so we didn’t drink much beer, but I liked the wings. It’s one of those places I always pass at the wrong time or with the wrong companions, so I doubt I’ll ever be back.

  4. johnking82
    October 9, 2012 at 10:03 am #

    The youtube clip may be the funniest thing on this blog in awhile.

    • October 9, 2012 at 11:21 am #

      I’ll look into getting you a refund, John…

  5. October 9, 2012 at 10:27 am #

    No problem here either. If it was a more flagrant insult to home brewing and craft beer I still wouldn’t care–if the couch potatoes get turned off on it that’ll just leave more good beer for me.

    Speaking of good beer I picked up a bottle of FD Barrel-aged Gonzo Porter (pricey stuff, but I’ve heard really good things about it and I like their regular Gonzo so I thought I’d splurge); an assortment from Hebrew Schmaltz; and a Sam Adams Stony Brook Red–all of which I haven’t tried yet. Last week I got a 4 pack of Ommegang’s Scythe and Sickle–I’m not usually a fan of Belgian-style beers but I really liked this one–the oats tone down the rye and wheat in it. I also tried Fisherman’s Pumpkin Stout–not bad at all–being a stout the pumpkin is less pronounced in this one; Sam Adams Octoberfest and Magic Hat’s Hex Ourtoberfest–both good; and Widmer’s Oatmeal Porter–eh, a bit too sweet for my palate, though you might like it.

    BTW: Have you managed to snag a bottle of FD’s Oyster Stout yet or am I gonna have to send you a care package?

    • October 9, 2012 at 11:23 am #

      I haven’t seen it up here, but it’s been a wile since I’ve been beer shopping at the “good” store. I’l have to check this Friday, as I need to load up. The Gonzo barrel aged stuff sounds interesting as well.

      • October 9, 2012 at 8:14 pm #

        The Barrel-aged Gonzo was good!!! Boozy, dark, rich and complex, w/ a moderate head and little lacing–nice nose on it too.

  6. October 9, 2012 at 10:44 am #

    Agree with @13Mikey that it’s so over the top that it’s hilarious. If it were more “insider,” that might have actually made it offensive. As it is, I think any homebrewer that does find it offensive needs to grow a thicker skin. Bratwurst beer might help with that.

    • October 9, 2012 at 11:27 am #

      I don’t think it’s offensive, it just bothered me that whoever wrote it didn’t seem to know a lot about homebrewing. I think most homebrewers are happy their hobby is worthy of a send-up on national TV.

  7. Brett
    October 9, 2012 at 10:57 am #

    If it was something like a car insurance commercial, it might be offensive, but they’re saying that their beer is better than the beer you’ve had elsewhere, so it makes sense. If they were pushing their food, they’d have a guy with bad home cooking. Its not like they picked on homebrewers to make an unrelated point. I’m ok with it.

    • October 9, 2012 at 11:28 am #

      Also, no cats.

      Thefact that the guy has a picture of his cat in a heart-shaped frame adds a layer to the character that I think is awesome.

  8. October 9, 2012 at 11:11 am #

    There’s a lot I already didn’t like about buffalo wild wings (calling Blue moon craft beer is a stretch and making it $1 more Is uncalled for) and the commercials aren’t nearly funny enough to win me over.
    I don’t hate them and won’t slam them like how, say, foodies slam guy fieri’s restaurant in times square.
    I just think it panders so much to “being normal” they sort of hit it right on the head; If they’re targeting middle class sports fans who are more in to the game than the food/drinks they consume while watching the game.

    What I get from these commercials is the message that “You don’t want to drink “weird” homebrews or awful flavored beer (or be German)! You want Coors and wings! This what us normal Americans do!”

    I mean, come on, their food and beer is so generic they don’t show them off in the commercials. Instead, they’re trying to win you over with their giant TV’s.
    I’ll just continue watching the game from the comfort of my own home or from a pub that has craft/local beers, better food and has the game on.
    Enough said. Or for them,”’nuff said”!

    • October 9, 2012 at 11:32 am #

      I heard Anthony Bourdain’s take on Fieri’s Times Square place the other day on O&A and thought it was hilarious. But then again I like whatever Bourdain does, even if I don’t agree with him…

      • October 9, 2012 at 11:42 am #

        I’m with you on Bourdain’s writing. Just enough snark and sentimentality to meet my needs. If you have a link…

        • October 9, 2012 at 12:13 pm #

          Here’s the meat of it – I found a transcript on Uproxx:

          I’m fascinated by the Guy Fieri terror-dome they just opened up. 600 seats, something like that? 600 seats. And a gift shop. And all of these poor diners, drives and whatever, douchebags waddle in there. First of all, he single handedly turned the neighborhood into the Ed Hardy district which I’m a little pissed off about…But all of these poor bastards see him eating cheap food on TV, they go in there and it’s what $18? For a f*cking hamburger? The french fries are like $12? By the time you buy a drink you’re out of there for what?

          Read more: http://www.uproxx.com/tv/2012/09/anthony-bourdain-is-not-a-fan-of-guy-fieri/#ixzz28p57vcmV

    • October 11, 2012 at 11:35 am #

      I’ve only been to ONE BWW in my life, and that was in Kansas City, KS. That particular establishment had a good selection of Boulevard brews, Boulevard bein’ a local brewery (and damned good beer it is, too!). So they ain’t ALL BuMilCoors. The food I had was passable, too.

      As for the ads… I think they’re funny.

  9. October 9, 2012 at 11:18 am #

    I was put off by the commercial (I’ve been a homebrewer for about 7 years), but not in a major way. They’re appealing to an audience who doesn’t care about their beer, and it shows on their menu as well.

    When BWW moved into town, people went nuts about their wings. I have gone there twice (events) and found the wings to be horrible (I’m in upstate NY – you need to get your wings right or go home) and the beer menu to be lackluster at best. I captured my thoughts on Twitter: http://twitter.com/billswallow/status/223984932308000768

    • October 9, 2012 at 11:35 am #

      Wait…so Bud Light Lime isn’t a craft/specialty beer?!! ¡Cuánta mantequilla!

      (I might have cut and pasted that Spanish exclamation inappropriately from About.com)

      • Bill
        October 11, 2012 at 8:42 am #

        Mmmmm butter…

        • October 11, 2012 at 11:29 am #

          Indeed – I like this as an exclamation, regardless of it’s meaning!

    • October 9, 2012 at 8:11 pm #

      Its just another chain–roughly equivalent to McWalmarts. I try to avoid chains whenever possible for just that reason. At least half the pleasure in trying a new restaurant (or beer) is discovery. Even if it ends up being sucky its a new, unique experience, not the safe, same ol’, same ol’. Vive la difference!

      • October 11, 2012 at 8:41 am #

        Agreed. I guess I’m a stickler when it comes to beer though. I mean, not every place needs to carry something amazing, but at least get the categories right. Local pizza place even has “IPA of the Month” on tap… when I ordered it I got a Kona Brewing Co. Coconut Brown…

        • October 11, 2012 at 11:30 am #

          Well they have Smirnoff Ice. What more do you need; Bartles and James?

  10. October 9, 2012 at 11:50 am #

    arg. please delete the second posting. im the new guy 🙂

    • October 9, 2012 at 12:13 pm #

      Done, Mr. Mountain.

  11. October 9, 2012 at 1:16 pm #

    It did not make me laugh. It’s just lazy humor. Any research at all would have yielded a good bit of amusing material with which to mock home-brewers.

    I do like the cat, though. I’m a sucker for a cat.

    • October 9, 2012 at 6:44 pm #

      The kitty is a win for sure. It bugs me that this commercial is 60% perfect and only needed a beer geek with a sense of humor to make it a classic.

  12. October 9, 2012 at 6:37 pm #

    Definitely funny. More research and more accuracy wouldn’t necessarily equate to more humour. There definitely is a lot to poke fun at if you dig deeper but stereotypes can be clever, too.

    I like this one. I think we all can see a bit of ourselves in this ad. 😉

    • October 9, 2012 at 6:43 pm #

      I guess I’m just narcissistic – i want to see MORE of ourselves in the ad!

  13. BeerBear
    October 9, 2012 at 7:53 pm #

    Feh! BWW, IMHO, serves nasty wings alongside a pedestrian beer selection.

    • October 11, 2012 at 11:31 am #

      But “nasty wings” is like “bad bacon” – it’s still bacon!!

      • Bill
        October 11, 2012 at 11:45 am #

        I have to disagree. Come out to upstate NY sometime and I’ll bring you around to let you see what real wings are. You’ll never want to leave. Besides, my fav wing joint is now the 2nd best beer bar in the Northeast!

      • BeerBear
        October 13, 2012 at 7:50 pm #

        Yet still “nasty” or ‘bad”. I am not a bacon addict and I would like my wings to have more meat on them than on my little finger. Not to mention a sauce that didn’t make you just throwup a little in your mouth.

  14. October 9, 2012 at 8:16 pm #

    BTW: I think one word describes what the ad-people were going with here–hyperbole!

    • October 11, 2012 at 11:32 am #

      Agreed, but it’s uninformed hyperbole, which isn’t usually that amusing.

  15. dplittle
    October 10, 2012 at 7:50 am #

    As a homebrewser, craft beer distributor AND a cat lover I enjoyed the commercial. I think they captured a lot of the homebrew spirit. How many of us don’t have carboys bubbling away in our living rooms and I love the lineup of taps on the wall. May have to do that myself. No more walking downstairs to the man cave for a pint.

    This isn’t the first commercial to bring the love of homebrew to the mass market. Anyone else remember the old BMC commercial where the guy offered his buddy a bottle of his latest creation … Chunky Pumpernickel Ale? Now go out and search for beers with pumpernickel in the name. I foresee a bratwurst beer in all our futures.

    One thing Buffalo Wild Wings did get right in the ad though … no slice of citrus fruit on the glass of wheat beer. I’m thankful for that.

    • October 11, 2012 at 11:33 am #

      I have to admit, those living room taps made me jealous!

  16. Anthony
    October 10, 2012 at 1:21 pm #

    i think it’s pretty funny but a misused. If they were promoting the fact they have great beer – which they are not – it would make total sense.

    • October 11, 2012 at 11:33 am #

      I think they have no cats – that’s the thrust of the argument… 🙂

  17. October 10, 2012 at 2:28 pm #

    They got one thing right tho–the home brewer in the mix has facial hair.

    • October 11, 2012 at 11:34 am #

      Indeed he does – now he just needs to groom it in a slightly unusual manner…

  18. October 10, 2012 at 10:55 pm #

    I wouldn’t be surprised if the real Galifianikis was a home brewer. I can confirm that he is a craft beer drinker. A few years ago I bumped shoulders with him at one of my favorite bottle shops in LA. I can’t remember what he bought but he pulled his bottle from the shelf where Great Divide, Allagash, Avery and Stone were sitting. The BWW commercial is pretty stupid though

    • October 11, 2012 at 11:36 am #

      I recall seeing him playing piano with a beer resting atop of it, and that beer looking like a good one – a deep amber and good lacing.

      And with that, I realize that I truly am a beer geek – I can’t remember his act, but I can see that beer very clearly in my head!


  1. amateur flour » Blog Archive » Kettle’s on: Brewing Four More Beers, the White House Honey Ale - September 28, 2013

    […] Image source: Buffalo Wild Wings commercial via Beer & Whisky Bros […]

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