SaloonBox Behind The Scenes: Dos Equis
Cinco De Mayo is approaching and, in anticipation of the big day, we’re highlighting Mexican beer cocktails…including the one found in our April kit, Paloma Prohibida. Included in the recipe is Dos Equis, probably the world’s most recognized Mexican lager. We had a few questions for Dos Equis Senior Brand Director, Quinn Kilbury.
How did you come to work as Brand Director for Dos Equis? Can you tell us a bit about your background and what you were doing before?
I’ve been at Heineken USA for about 5 years, starting out as the Brand Director on Newcastle Brown Ale before moving on to be the Senior Brand Director on Heineken and now Dos Equis. Prior to HUSA, I worked at Pepsi, General Mills, and on the agency side.
What intrigued you about Heineken from the start? Have you always been interested in the beer industry?
Great brands and the ability to work for a family owned but global organization. That’s a rare combo these days. I’ve been a beer guy since it was legal to be. The three tier system makes sure every day is new and exciting, it’s an incredibly dynamic industry to be a part of.
We’re featuring Dos Equis in our cocktail kit this month. It’s the perfect way to top off our Paloma Prohibida cocktail. The beer cocktails we've featured are among the most favored by our subscribers. Have you seen a rise lately in beer as a cocktail ingredient?
Yes! In many ways Dos Equis started the beer cocktail craze down in Texas with the Dosarita years ago, and we believe beer cocktails are just beginning to really take off now. We have a dedicated beer cocktail program we’ve really leaned into this year and we’re seeing great traction.
Can you share a bit about the history of Dos Equis? How has the recipe changed over the years, if at all?
Dos Equis has been around since 1897 in Mexico, and all of our beer is still brewed there, but Dos Equis Lager was actually originally brewed in the ‘80’s specifically for Texas and the Sunbelt markets of the US. We haven’t messed with either Lager or Ambar’s recipes; why mess with perfection!
Is there anything in particular you wish people knew about Dos Equis?
Dos Equis is the #1 Mexican franchise on draft in the US, depending on where you live in the US that might come as a surprise to you.
What has been one of the most exciting moments since joining Heineken?
Everyday is exciting around here, what keeps me going is finding new ways for people to discover the best tasting import beer (scientifically proven). When you have a great product, everything else gets a heck of a lot easier and more exciting.
What are some of the challenges you face in your role?
We’re a brand with national awareness, but very little trial outside of our key states. Once you try Dos Equis, you generally stick around for more, but generating that trial is easier said than done given the complexities of the beer category. We don’t sell the equivalent of about 275M beers in Texas per year for nothing.
What’s next for Dos Equis? Are there any exciting upcoming partnerships or campaigns you can tell us about?
We recently evolved our campaign to “Keep It Interesante”, the early response has been terrific! I’m super excited for our partnership with Funny or Die during Cinco and can’t wait for football season given our partnership with the College Football Playoffs and the College Football Hall of Fame.
What's your vision for the future of the brand?
It’s a damn good sessionable beer, we’re going to get more people to discover that while also bringing some of the fun back to beer through our ad campaign.
And finally, do you have a favorite Dos Equis cocktail you’ve tried?
I’m a fan of the OG, the Dosarita, there’s no better way to get your night started!
DOS-A-RITA® (ON THE ROCKS)
GLASS: 16 oz. Glass
▸ Citrus salt
▸ 1 and 1⁄2 oz. tequila blanco (100% agave)
▸ 1 oz. lime juice
▸ 3⁄4 oz. agave syrup
▸ 6 oz. Dos Equis® Lager
▸ 3 large cubes of ice
▸ Add citrus salt rim to the glass and add ice.
▸ Pour all ingredients excluding beer into glass and stir.
▸ Top with Dos Equis® Lager.
▸ Garnish with chili tincture.