Posted by: Christine Adams | October 5, 2009

Small Business of the Week: Mammoth Brewing Company


Mammoth Brewing Company is the highest altitude brewer on the West Coast. Started as an add-on Brew-pub to the Whiskey Creek Restaurant in 1995 it was purchased by Sean and Joyce Turner in 2006 as a standalone micro-brewery. Since this time, they have made a few changes including: adding Organic ingredients to the recipes, increasing their distribution footprint to the rest of the Sierras and packing of two of the nine famous brews in aluminum cans. Their brews have some of the most unique tastes one can ever experience! Once you have tasted their beer you can see why they won 11 medals, including 4 Golds and 1 best of show for the 11 brews they entered at the California State Fair.

Each year this exceptional brewery puts on two large events in Mammoth Lakes, California. One of the events is called Bluesapalooza, which showcases 70 of the top micro-breweries from around the country and extraordinary blues performers making this Mammoth’s signature event! In 2009, its 14th year, Bluesapalooza sold out with over 5,000 attendees. This year they also started Big Sky Music Festival which focuses on an environmental theme. They plan to continue to host and encourage this project.

The reason that I chose to highlight Mammoth Brewing Company as my Small Business of the Week is because of Sean Turner’s dedication. All entrepreneurs could learn a valuable lesson from his commitment to growth, exceeding customer’s expectations and his loyalty to his partners in the field. He tirelessly promotes his products at local events and seeks ways to get involved in any program that may enrich his brand. They are also involved with many community projects and donate as much funding to worthy causes as possible.

This last summer I had the pleasure of working with Sean on a road trip from Reno to the Bluesapalooza festival in Mammoth Lakes. Together we came up with a grand plan that involved a charter “party” bus, an overnight stay and festival tickets, all at a very low price to the consumer. We were so confident that this was an incredible idea that we booked a 56 passenger bus and hoped to fill 2 buses total. As time went on and the festival drew near we were no-where near filling the bus. Sean and I reevaluated the entire trip and at that point he made an executive decision to commit to the program because he did not want to disappoint the people that had already booked and he felt a strong obligation to our partnership. Despite every bit of promotion we could possibly think of, in the end we had to reduced the size of the bus and only had a handful of people that actually participated.

What happened next was the truly amazing part of the story. When the handful of people we sent up to Mammoth arrived they were pleasantly surprised that Sean had upgraded their accommodations to the nicest hotel in Mammoth. He ensured that each one of them had VIP passes (which was not part of the deal). He personally went and met with them in the midst of his largest event coordination efforts of the year. When they returned they were the happiest raving fans I have ever come across. I received emails and letters including photographs, all thanking our establishment and Mammoth Brewing Company. None of that would have happened without Sean going the extra mile for a program that would have turned most owners sour. He is a delight to work with, he is an excellent example of a true leader in the industry and he knows what it takes to be an extremely successful entrepreneur!

“He was a wise man who invented beer.” ~Plato

I urge you to try some of Mammoth Brewery’s inventions today! If you enjoy a unique and refreshing brew, you will never come across a better taste. Also remember to support businesses that do excellent things for the community and set outstanding examples.


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