Eugenio Romero-Wendlandt – Wendlandt Cerveceria
It’s a love match between Eugenio Romero-Wendlandt (’06, management) and craft beer.
Romero-Wendlandt, a native of Ensenada, Mexico, came to the U.S. to study at San Diego State, not only for the “great business school”, but also to become part of the Aztec men’s tennis team. “Gene Carswell, our tennis coach, was an incredible mentor,” he recalled. “His guidance through college was always certain and most of my goals in the classroom and on the court were accomplished.”
Off the tennis court Romero-Wendlandt developed a taste for craft beer during his time at SDSU. “In Mexico, we had only very limited styles of beer,” he noted. “I started trying local beers that had a rich flavor, were super aromatic and completely different to what I was used to.”
Romero-Wendlandt enjoyed the idea of craft beer so much he began making his own home brew. “I liked it so much that I always had way more beer than what I could drink,” he said. “That’s when I started getting ideas about owning a brew pub.”
When he first bought a building in Ensenada’s business district in 2015, he planned to lease the building. But when his home brewing operation grew larger, he moved it to the building and began drinking beer there with his friends in the evening. Eventually he realized that there was a market for his product, so he updated his business plan and became the founder of Wendlandt Cerveceria (Wendlandt Brewery).
The craft brew industry is so open and helpful everywhere, so I don’t really see a difference in the business environments other than San Diego breweries are a ‘billion’ times bigger.
While West Coast craft brews are new to the Mexican marketplace, they are growing in popularity and, in 2015, Romero-Wendlandt began bottling his beer and selling it to other bars and restaurants.
Romero-Wendlandt has mostly left behind his days as a tennis star, but his SDSU management degree is coming in handy. He has turned over the beer making to a master brewer and he is concentrating on managing his thriving business, though he does not see a significant difference between the Ensenada craft brew industry and San Diego’s. “The craft brew industry is so open and helpful everywhere, so I don’t really see a difference in the business environments other than San Diego breweries are a ‘billion’ times bigger,” he said. “But the people behind them are pretty cool and normal.”