Crafty play

Dallas Cowboys icon Troy Aikman brews up light-beer company in Austin

Dallas Cowboys icon Troy Aikman brews up light-beer company in Austin

Troy aikman beer
The beer is pitched as being healthy, with organic grains. Courtesy of Eight

There’s a new beer in the game, one developed by former Dallas Cowboys quarterback and Renaissance man Troy Aikman. Called Eight, it’s a light lager being pitched as a healthy, low-cal offering, and it’ll be on the market in February.

A release describes the beer as having organic grains, “antioxidant-rich” Hallertau Taurus hops, and “no adjuncts, cheap fillers, or sugars.” As a “light” lager, it has 90 calories and 2.6 grams of carbohydrates.

In a statement, Aikman says that Eight is for health-minded drinkers who watch what they consume.

“These folks, myself included, are conscious of what we put in our bodies, and options for a light, refreshing beer that’s brewed with organic ingredients are virtually nonexistent,” he says. “When it comes to grabbing a beer, I found that my options were limited.”

The beer took two years of research and trial, and included a partnership with Oregon State University’s food science and technology department. Eight will be based in Austin with a team that includes brewmaster Phil Leinhart (Anheuser-Busch, Harpoon Brewery, Brewery Ommegang), Doug Campbell (former president of Brewery Ommegang), operations manager Ruchi Desai, and brand strategist Jake Duneier.

The beer will be on draft in bars and restaurants in Texas, and then in retail locations in March, in six-packs, 12-packs and 19.2-ounce single serve cans.

For non-sports fans, the name seems like it has to be a clever reference to the British expression, “one over the eight,” which means “one drink too many,” referencing the myth that a man can drink eight pints of beer without getting too drunk. For the rest of the world, the beer’s name refers to Aikman’s football number for the Cowboys: 8.

This is not Aikman’s first foray into the food and beverage industry. In 2012, he pursued a plan to open up to 50 locations of Dunkin’ in Dallas, which never came to fruition. More recently, in 2018, he was part of a team of celebrities opening restaurants at Texas Live, the entertainment district in Arlington. His place is called Troy’s, and is a well-regarded destination for burgers, salads, beer, and live music.