Former Dallas Cowboys quarterback, Troy Aikman, visited Amarillo on April 27th. Aikman, who retired in 2000 has been working in broadcasting since. But in recent years, Aikman has ventured into the beer market.
“I’ve been traveling around Texas for the last year getting the word out about the beer, Eight Beer,” Aikman said. “We took two years to make the recipe before putting it on the market. 100% organic grain hops, making us the only widely available beer that doesn’t have corn, rice, syrup, or sugars. It’s a better for you beer. For those that health and wellness are important for them like it is for me, they can feel good about this beer.”
The beer launched a year ago and won the ‘#1 Independent Beer’ within its first year of being on the market. The beer is carried only in Texas, across the state. While in attendance at Hodgetown, a reporter asked Aikman if he’d ever consider going into baseball. As the story goes, Aikman was approached by the New York Mets before he went to Oklahoma State, an offer not worth changing his plans.
“They called me the night before the draft to ask what it would take to keep me from going to Oklahoma to play football,” Aikman said. “I said ‘It’s going to take $250,000, Darryl Strawberry was their star player at the time and they told me, Darryl doesn’t even get that. So they told me good luck in Oklahoma with football. That’s where my baseball career ended.”
Since being out of football for 23 years now as a player, Aikman spoke on the support he still receives from Cowboys fans to this day.
“There’s a lot of people around the state, and here in Amarillo that have come out in support with my jerseys on still. It’s been amazing, quite honestly,” Aikman said. “I don’t underemphasis that. When we have traveled around, the response has been overwhelming and it’s exciting. They’re excited about the beer and to be remembered means a lot to me.”
Eight Beers’ company statement is ‘No shortcuts, No excuses’ Aikman gave insight into that meaning.
“Everything about the beer has my fingerprints on it. The beer was made for the early risers, the ones that wake up with a purpose and passion and want to be the best at whatever it is they do,” Aikman said. “Those are the people who I’ve always admired and looked up to. So the beer is made for those people. The saying, ‘No Shortcuts, No Excuses’ has always been a mantra of mine. I’ve been around a lot of people that have great talent but don’t get as far as what their talent should’ve allowed them to go because they don’t want to do the hard work. I think so much of the slogan that I wanted it to be on the can.”
The brand name of course comes from Aikman’s number in football. Opening his own beer company wasn’t in the original plans Aikman had for his life. While in his sophomore year in high school, Aikman worked for a beer distributor in Oklahoma, introducing him to the industry.
“I worked at a distributorship in college and have done some local distributorship in Dallas, but never imagined I’d be making my own beer,” Aikman said. “But, I met my partners through a mutual friend, one who’s had a career in the business. One conversation lead to another and as I said initially if we could do it differently and better, then I’d do it. I knew it had to be a light beer, that’s what I drink, and like I said it has no adjuncts or fillers so it really is better for you. It’s a cleaner beer than what’s available for you.”
For now, the beer company plans to focus on the lager they have out now, but plans are to continue growing and serving at the quality they’ve been putting out.
For those interested in purchasing ‘Eight Beer’ visit eightbeer.com and enter your zip code to find out where it can be purchased near you!
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