Trois Dames calls it quits. This shock wave swept across Switzerland on 10 September 2020. The contribution of Trois Dames to the development of the Swiss beer and brewing scene can hardly be put into words. It is infinitely tragic and therefore infinitely necessary that we asked the founder and owner Raphaël Mettler about the reasons.
Trois Dames stops. Why?
We are at the end of a cycle and we need something new. It is a decision that we have already
taken a long time ago.
Can you describe the circle: How did it start and why do you think it is complete now?
We have tried many beer styles (nous avons fait un peu le tour de la question !)
These are mainly intrinsic reasons. Were there also extrinsic reasons?
No, it is not because of the Covid-19 or because of too much fight for market share…
Your explanation doesn’t sound like an external force, but like a voluntary decision. Is that true and why does it have to be done now anyway?
When exactly do you stop?
We will continue to produce until the end of the year, then we will sell our equipment.
Who will fill the gap in the market that you leave behind?
I don’t know.
What should people remember when they think back to the Brasserie Trois Dames?
…that is not our decision.
There were certainly interested parties who wanted to continue Trois Dames and what possibilities were evaluated?
We did not want to sell the brewery to a large corporation. We have always said: we are independent, we are craftsmen. We think that if I don’t continue and if my ladies don’t stay in the project, then there is no point in selling or giving in.
We will keep the brand, maybe for some collabs in the future. Or if our daughters want to start a project and use the brand for it. But that is all hypothetical.
What happens with the equipment?
It will be sold.
What happens to the name?
We keep the name.
What happens to the beer?
Available as long as there is beer.
Trois Dames was founded in 2003. How has the Swiss beer industry developed since then, both positively and negatively?
I can see a normal development of a market: if a market looks “interesting”, many people want to participate. There are people with good intentions, beer lovers… and there are people who are less committed, with less heart… But they will not be staying in the market for a long time.
What advice do you give a brewery owner today? What advice do you give to the employees of a brewery? What advice do you give to customers?
Owner of a brewery: You are not automatically happier when you are bigger. Find your
Employees: Start your own brewery if you have the heart to do it.
Customers: Visit the breweries that fits your beliefs and buy only the beer you love.
It is January 1, 2021 and you get up. What do you do?
…we will see.
It is January 1, 2022. What did you do last year?