As you know, the small, scrappy craft brewing industry has started to yield its first billionaires and captains of industry. But unlike many other industries in this world, where the leaders only care about their own charts going up, craft brewers like to give back, both in terms of charity and expertise. And maybe not quite in the b-word range, Carlos Alvarez, founder and owner of The Gambrinus Co. of San Antonio, Texas, is certainly one of those benevolent captains. Would you like some evidence? How about a $1 million gift to the brewing science program at UC Davis.
What does one do with $1 million? The gift will fund new brewing and laboratory equipment at UC Davis to create the brewery of the future.
Gambrinus is a leader in craft-brewing with three independent and distinctive breweries: the Trumer Brauerei in Berkeley, Calif.; BridgePort Brewing Co. in Portland, Ore.; and the Spoetzl Brewery in Shiner, Texas.
“As an immigrant from Mexico, I have enjoyed the many opportunities I found in this country, and I’m very happy that success in the beer business enables me to help in UC Davis’ efforts to educate future craft brewers,” Alvarez said.
Alvarez is a graduate of the Monterrey Institute of Technology in Monterrey, Mexico, with a degree in biochemical engineering. As export manager for Grupo Modelo, he led the launch of Corona in the United States. In 1986 he founded The Gambrinus Co. and became importer for Corona and the Modelo portfolio for the next 20 years, developing Corona into the No. 1 imported beer and a leading global brand.
Alvarez is deeply committed to education and has contributed to educational institutions across the United States, with a particular focus on scholarship funding. He also has provided generous support to the brewing program at Oregon State University.