It all started when Gregg Berman, Founder and CEO of the Clown Shoes brand, brewed a small batch of “Hoppy Feet” Black IPA with Ipswich Ale Brewing, also located in Massachusetts. The offering was well received around Boston, prompting Berman to collaborate with Head Brewer Dan Lipke to develop and trial additional beers, with innovative takes on existing styles – such as Clown Shoes’ Josh the Guava King, a Double IPA brewed with guava puree.
Since its founding in 2009, Clown Shoes has released over 100 different beers, with sales in 28 states and 5 countries. They also have a unique state-specific beer program, releasing small batch variations exclusive to individual states. They were voted Best Brewery in Massachusetts in 2013, and one of Rate Beer's Top 100 Breweries in the World in 2014.
Clown Shoes is known for its imperial stouts and double IPAs, as well as their extensive barrel-aging program. They experiment with high-end barrels ranging from port and tequila to Cognac, rum and bourbon. They are also known for their signature, and at times controversial, labels, featuring artwork with comic and sci-fi/fantasy influences.
Why the name Clown Shoes? “Clowns are questionable, but the shoes make us laugh. They remind us about humility and to find humor in life. Our mission now is to produce beer without pretension while being free and a little crazy.”