Americans to Export “Unique” Icelandic Craft Beer Skip to content

Americans to Export “Unique” Icelandic Craft Beer

Three American entrepreneurs have launched the label Einstök Beer (einstök means “unique”). The product, which is brewed in the Víking brewery in Akureyri, north Iceland, will be sold as craft beer in foreign markets.


The photo is not related to the story. By Páll Stefánsson.

The product, described as “Icelandic Pale Ale”, will soon be available at markets reaching 40 million consumers and the plan is to make Einstök the country’s best known export product in the next three to five years, Morgunbladid reports.

The entrepreneurs, Bernard LaBorie, David Altshuler and Jack Sichterman, intend to use the country’s image in the marketing campaign, reasoning that unlike most other beer labels there is no need to exaggerate Einstök’s links to purity and beauty.

The project started when LaBorie, who wanted to create a new label for a beverage, went looking for the world’s best water. “His quest ended in Iceland. Then he contacted me and David Altshuler,” Sichterman said.

They had originally planned to produce luxury water. “That was in 2006. Our plans changed at the end of 2007 when there were indications of recession in all markets. We realized that it wouldn’t be viable to market luxury water under such circumstances.”

Sichterman said he and his associates had visited the Víking brewery in Akureyri in their preparation for the water sale. “We tasted their beer and were surprised that they didn’t emphasize export more. Icelandic beer has many qualities other beer producers falsify.”

“For example, there is often not much behind statements on the purity of the water or the masculine image which they try to create around their beer labels, but here in Iceland all of this exists and more,” Sichterman explained.

Internationally, there is a growing market for craft beers, which appeals to individuals seeking more versatile flavors in beer than those offered by large international labels.

Craft beer, or hand craft beer, generally refers to specialty beers brewed in local breweries or in bars and restaurants.

Click here to read another beer-related story.


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