Posted on 6/20/2018 by Steve Robbins
Lawson’s Finest Grows – An interview with Seth Talmon
Seth Talmon is the new Sales and Distribution Manager at Lawson’s Finest Liquids and just moved to the Mad River Valley with his family from Colorado. The Talmons are currently shopping for a home.
What is your background in the craft beer industry?
I’ve been working in the craft beer industry for just about 15 years. I got my start waiting tables at Carvers Brewing a small brewpub in Durango, CO. This is where I really started to look outside the box of traditional domestic beers and explore craft beers. The experience at Carvers put me on a path to making craft beer a career.
I harassed Oskar Blues Brewery (Dales Pale Ale) for about a year until I finally got my foot in the door as one of their very first sales representatives. I worked for OB for just about 4 years where I quickly moved from managing a small territory to managing the State of Colorado and a large distribution network.
In 2010 I moved to Avery Brewing Co. Avery Brewing represented everything that was craft in my eyes: boundary pushing beers, quality control and assurance and a sense of comradery and family. I was with Avery for 8 years wearing many hats as a Sales Representative, Sales Manager, Hiring and Training Manager. Upon leaving my post I had helped to build a 30-person sales team that represented the product in 44 States and with 88 distributors around the country and world. Avery was an amazing experience and set me up for my new role at Lawson’s Finest Liquids.
What are your responsibilities at Lawson’s Finest and what projects are you working on?
My title at Lawson’s Finest is Sales and Distribution Manager. This means I am managing the beer from the moment it leaves the dock of the brewery, from booking refrigerated trucks for delivery of beer to distributors to making sure our beer is being sold to retailers that are committed to taking care of our beer according to our freshness standards.
We currently have one Brand Ambassador for 5 states. In the very near future I will be starting the process of hiring other Brand Ambassadors to represent Lawson’s Finest outside of VT. This is very exciting, and I can’t wait to put some feet on the street in other New England states where we sell our beer.
Brewhouse & fermenters installed
You played an important role during expansion at Avery Brewing. What do you see as the greatest challenges as Lawson’s Finest Liquids embarks on this next chapter of growth?
Yes. When I started at Avery we were producing right around 16,000 bbl. of beer a year and now they are right around 67,000 bbl. of beer a year.
The challenge is staying true to who you are and building off of that foundation. Lawson’s Finest is a pillar in the community and has roots here in this beautiful valley. Continuing to be involved in the community is important and not forgetting where you came from even as you grow outside of the Mad River Valley.
Sean and Karen Lawson have worked diligently on laying out an awesome road map that doesn’t involve taking over the world, it represents staying true to our values and having continued sustainable success along the way. I felt this during my first interview and knew I needed to be a part of this talented team.
Besides a great job opportunity, what did you find appealing about a move to Vermont?
My wife and I moved to Vermont when we were first married 17 years ago and took jobs as caretakers for a 100-acre farm in Southern VT. We moved back out West a couple of years later to be closer to family after our son was born always knowing we wanted to come back and raise our son here. VT represents hardworking, community minded individuals with a connection to the land. Why wouldn’t you want to be a part of that?!!
So here we are! We are diving into the community and couldn’t be happier.
Colorado supports one of the strongest craft brewing scenes in the US. How does Vermont compare?
Colorado is a magnet for so many different craft breweries both out of state and in state. It is very much the confluence of craft beer, so the choices are plentiful, and it creates a ton of competition in the market place.
There is very much a local beer scene in CO but nothing like VT. VT is local strong: here, you are hard pressed to find many beers produced outside of VT. The great thing about VT beer is that it is awesome and there really is no need to look elsewhere.
Now that you have been in the Mad River Valley for a couple of months, what are your first impressions?
The Mad River Valley has welcomed our family with open arms. We are very lucky to have landed here among such great people. If we have needed anything there has always been someone to help us out. We can’t wait to find a home and feel a little more settled.
“Hurry up Steve Robbins”!
What other interests and activities do you and your family enjoy?
We have a 1984 VW camper van that we love to take on adventures. From camping, mtn. biking, fishing and skiing we stay pretty busy on the weekends.
What is your favorite Lawson’s Finest beer? What is your favorite beer and food pairing?
Sip of Sunshine of course!! Favorite beer food pairing has got to be an IPA with sushi. IPA’s are awesome with a really fatty Hamachi Sushi. Try it! So good!
Tap room and retail store progressing on schedule