For whom the beer flows: On Monday, Jan. 14, a huge announcement promptly rocked both the beer and music worlds -- San Diego's own Stone Brewing Co. has collaborated with heavy metal icons Metallica for a signature brew named "Enter Night."
Previously only available to fans in small batches at venues on the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame-inducted band's late-2018 tour dates, Enter Night is described as "a hoppy pilsner played through a distortion pedal" and is available now at select locations -- including Oggi's Mission Valley, Sublime Ale House in San Marcos, and Schooner Station Pizzeria & Sports Pub in Encinitas (among others).
Clocking in at 5.7 percent ABV, the beer will be rolled out nationally throughout the first quarter of 2019 in 16-ounce six-pack cans and via draft at Stone Brewing purveyors, with a worldwide release to follow. For more information on where to find it, visit this Stone Brewing site.
Metallica (comprised of vocalist/guitarist James Hetfield, drummer Lars Ulrich, guitarist Kirk Hammett and bassist Robert Trujillo) are no stranger to libations. The multi-Grammy-winning band released its first whiskey, "Blackened," in 2018 via a collaboration between their own Sweet Amber Distilling Co. and master distiller Dave Pickerell. Last year, Metallica also approached Stone Brewing Co. co-founder Greg Koch with the idea of partnering on a beer -- and following a meeting in Copenhagen, Denmark with Ulrich (which Koch has described as "a pretty epic" night of beer tasting), the premise for Enter Night was brewed up.
In a recent interview with USA Today, Ulrich explained that the band wanted a beer that wasn't too heavy: "We wanted to create something that would be good to drink, (when) maybe you are tailgating outside a venue waiting to get into a concert. We wanted to have a very drinkable beer and one that would not, you know, knock your socks off."
Ulrich also said that he leaned toward the pilner style as an ode of sorts to the Tuborg Brewery that he grew up near in Denmark, where one could smell "the hops in the air." As for Koch, a longtime Metallica fan, the partnership was particularly exciting.
"I remember seeing Metallica on the cover of a magazine just after the 'Black Album' was released," he said in a statement. "On the cover was a quote that resonated with me to this day: 'Metallica didn’t go to number one, number one came to them.' I loved what that meant. Do it your way and never compromise your art. If you’re great at what you do, people will come. I view that simple quote as one of the founding philosophical elements of Stone Brewing."
It all still begs the question though: Why call a light pilsner Enter Night, when that name seems much more suited for a deep, dark stout or hefty porter? It's, of course, a play on the band's 1991 hit "Enter Sandman" -- but c'mon, "Master of Pilsners" wasn't available?
Whatever the case may be: Beer us!