East End Brewing Company in Pittsburgh's Larimer neighborhood is creating a beer especially for this year's Britsburgh (@BACPgh) merriment. It is appropriate that Scott Smith has been selected for this.
In late 2011 two of his brews were introduced to the European beer distribution network. Big Hop IPA and Black Strap Stout were on tap in Denmark, France, and of course, England. Getting feedback from Twitter it was found that the Europeans were glad to have these brews from da Burgh. Upon my December visit I found his beers on tap in Craft Beer (pub) on Leather Lane London EC1. I met my long time pen-pal from 1968 there for lunch and we enjoyed the pleasure of a Pittsburgh Stout. I was very proud to see a beer on tap in a London pub from my home city.
This came about from an importer who had to send empty kegs back to Europe. This cost money and sending empty kegs did not seem to be a good business practice. They gave Scott 40 clean kegs. All he had to do was to fill the kegs and cash a check. The importer did all the paperwork and hauling. This hasn't occurred since but let's hope it happens again soon.
East End has the distinction of being the only brewery in Pittsburgh or Allegheny County to have their beers sent to London. Some years ago Labatts bought Latrobe's Rolling Rock Brewery. The Company based in Canada sent the beer to England but they actually owned the brewery. Plus the brewery was in Westmorland County. I found the beer in Oddbins on Fleet Street going for about twice what we were paying here at the time. Yikes!