‘Brews Brothers’ Star Alan Aisenberg on His Bingeable Netflix Comedy
It’s the beginning of a brewtiful partnership…
Well, not really. Netflix’s new 8-episode comedy Brews Brothers, from executive producers (and siblings) Greg and Jeff Schaffer (The League), taps into the exploding craft beer trend, following two brothers on a quest to create the perfect ales and lagers.
Recipe-resistant brewer Wilhelm Rodman (Alan Aisenberg) runs California-based craft brewery, Rodman’s, but something isn’t quite working. Enter: his arrogant, cicerone older brother Adam (Mike Castle). Together, the odd couple of beer aficionados/brewers strive to impress the local area with new recipes and keep Will’s business afloat…to hilariously insane results.
Aisenberg fills us in on the foul-mouthed hijinks to come, below.
What drew you to this role?
Alan Aisenberg: Brews Brothers is about two brothers who could not be more different and are forced to work together, and I think the best television comes from when two people are forced into situations that they maybe shouldn’t be — that moment of conflict creates great comedy. So, just from the synopsis, I was like ‘Great!’
And then I found out it was from Greg and Jeff Schaffer. Jeff Schaffer is the guy I’ve wanted to work with since I was like, 15-years-old. The League and Curb Your Enthusiasm changed my life, how I think about comedy, and how I like comedy. Every show that Greg has worked on too, That ’70s Show, Mad About You. These two guys have worked on a lot of the things I’m most excited about.
Having seen The League, Brews Brothers seems very similar in terms of style. It’s not holding anything back.
No, it’s not. There were definitely conversations that we had — we literally had no censorship being on Netflix. You could say whatever you want, and you could do whatever you want. I think we are definitely trying for that type of audience like The League like, ‘let’s make something for that audience.’ But also let’s talk the way that the audience would talk.
What are some of the really crazy things that we’ll get to see your character, Will, do?
What can I say… what can I say… the show gets really gross and insane, and then it gets grosser and even more insane. Greg, as a writer, has a beautiful way of really using every possible moment, so when things are getting really out of hand for Will and Adam, it never lets up. At no point when you watch this show do you go, ‘Oh, these guys just found their comfort zone.’ They always found something to go off of, something to turn to make it even funnier and wild. So, that’s nothing specific really, but just know that the show never lets up, and just keeps going and going and going.
These two brothers, Will and Adam, are both so passionate about brewing, but they can’t seem to figure out how to work together. What advice would you give Will if you could, so he could better deal with his brother and better his business?
I think process is key, and Will’s got to respect the process. He makes beer based on feeling and he really can’t recreate stuff. He’ll make a beer once, and that’ll be it, and I think there’s a beauty in something like that, but if you’re trying to run a successful brewery, you’ve got to make beer that you can replicate. Tossing hops around and not knowing how much you put in, is probably not the best way to run a successful business. And I think Adam is really good at [the orderly side of things]. Watching them brew beer is like watching someone play Beethoven and someone playing Van Halen at the same time.
Did you pick up anything about the brewing process while shooting?
I picked a bunch up! We actually had one of the [former] brewers from Iron Triangle Brewing Company [where the series was shot] every day on set. I know he was passed the scripts too, but he would come in and help us shoot. I love beer, it’s one of those almost comfort things, because it’s good with food, but it’s also something you can just enjoy much like a glass of wine.
And then, right before I left to shoot the show, I got diagnosed with Celiac Disease. So, I went from loving beer, to having a doctor tell me, ‘You cannot drink beer anymore.’ So, on Monday, I was diagnosed with Celiac, and on Wednesday I was flying to Los Angeles to shoot a show about beer.
What did they have you guys drinking on set? I’m guessing it wasn’t actually beer in every scene.
There’s a non-alcoholic beer so we could actually pour and drink beer on set, and I had my own seltzer and food coloring, because mine couldn’t have gluten in it. But I love seltzer, so I was okay with that. And as you’ll see on the show, we were all drinking a lot of beer [Laughs].
Is there anything else you would like prospective viewers to know?
It’s short, it’s fun, it’s less minutes than The Irishman, so if you’ve watched that and you don’t watch our show, that’s hurtful. There’s no old men in our show dying. So please watch our show, it’s shorter!
Brews Brothers, Season 1, Streaming Now, Netflix