So You Want to Start a Brewery?

So You Want to Start a Brewery?
So You Want to Start a Brewery?

So You Want to Start a Brewery?

The Lagunitas Story
By Tony Magee


224 Pages, 6 x 9

Formats: Trade Paper, PDF, EPUB, Mobipocket

Trade Paper, $17.95 (CA $21.95) (US $17.95)

ISBN 9781556525629

Rights: WOR

Chicago Review Press (Oct 2014)


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So You Want to Start a Brewery? is the first-person account of Tony Magee’s gut-wrenching challenges and heart-warming successes in founding Lagunitas Brewing Company. In just 20 years, the company has grown from a seat-of-the-pants, one-man operation to be the fifth largest—and the fastest-growing—craft brewer in the United States. This equal part memoir, narrative, and business story is an illuminating yet hilarious account anchored strongly in time and place as a one-of-a-kind, made-in-America journey that culminates with the success of one of the nation’s most popular and enduring craft beer brands.


“If you really want to understand what makes craft brewing fundamentally different and more recklessly thrilling than its plodding industrial counterparts, it's hard to find a better spirit guide than Tony Magee. This is not a how-to business book, but a stream-of-consciousness sermon on one man’s ongoing trip into the unknown as he creates and continues to shape the destiny of one of the more iconic craft beer brands anywhere. There's no glib advice here. Tony insists that we all find our own unique way to success, but it sure is enlightening being along with him for the ride.” —Randy Mosher, author of Tasting Beer

“Documents the seemingly simple but uniquely savvy thinking Magee used to turn a six-barrel brewhouse into a top craft brewer. Instructive and inspiring for entrepreneurs of all stripes.” —Ray Daniels, director, Cicerone Certification Program, and author of Designing Great Beers

“A must read for aspiring brewers, beer aficionados, and entrepreneurs alike. This is a tale of perseverance and patience; creativity and wisdom; innovation and insight; and shared through the lens of an unlikely beer genius who cultivates his brand through a symphonic approach.” —Brett Joyce, president, Rogue Ales

“Like the beer of the brewery he founded, Tony Magee’s voice is original and provocative. Read this book.” —Tom Acitelli, author of The Audacity of Hops 

“All brewers think they can write, but Tony brings his unique and entertaining beer story to life in such a funny, breezy, yet thoughtful way that reading it feels like you’re having one of his IPA’s with Hemingway and Gore Vidal in a Key West bar. I read it cover to cover in one sitting and found myself laughing out loud throughout.” —Harry Schuhmacher, publisher, Beer Business Daily

“Unconventional brands come from unconventional people. Drawing from music and literature, Tony Magee sees the world in a way that most completely miss. He has poured his heart and soul into Lagunitas and we are all richer for it.” —Keith Greggor, co-owner & CEO, Anchor Brewing Company

“Tony is one of the most unique characters in all of craftdom, rising fast to become one of the top US craft brewers in recent years. He’s wicked smart and has a way with words; here’s his story told in his own inimitable fashion.” —Benj Steinman, Beer Marketer’s Insights

"Highly recommended for readers who are interested in beer, business tales, or even humorous and narrative American nonfiction." —Library Journal

Author Biography

Tony Magee is the founder and CEO of the Lagunitas Brewing Company.