Posts from the ‘macrobreweries’ Category

Miller Lite gets into Craft Beer?

Wheat, Amber and Blonde.

Yes, its true.  Miller test markets went well this Spring in 4 US cities and is now going to start brewing craft style beers.  Their slogan “Craft beer done lite” describes the product exactly.  I was able to get my hands on the Miller Lite Craft-style Amber and I must say it was more than disappointing to a craft beer drinker.  I wasn’t able to officially rate it because of time constraints and the fact that 2400 of us Craft Brewer Conference attendees where just given samples of about 2000 beers left over from the judges in the World Beer Cup!  I do remember it being watered down and being able to taste the artificial flavors.  I must say, however that I am glad this product is coming out because beer drinkers who exclusively drink light lagers will notice a step up and this product may very well be the stepping stone to a serious local made craft brew!  It will be interesting to see how this new brand extension does.   Read the AP article here:

Miller lite is also coming out with Wheat and Blonde craft style beers.
Advertisements

Big Breweries trying to get smaller, smaller Breweries trying to get bigger!

I wrote an article back about the macrobreweries, namely Anheuser-Busch (AB), Miller and Coors all trying to act smaller with lines of their beer trying to be marketed as craft beer. AB has taken it to a whole new level deciding last month after 111 years that Michelob is now a craft beer! If you watch football at all, perhaps you have seen these new commercials. I think its pretty funny that the big guys are trying to do this and just shows how desired Brewpot.com will be even by the big guys, who I originally thought would have no interest in me. The article I read interviews Gary Fish the owner of Deschutes Brewery out in Oregon, whom I have talked to on several occasions, and has advised me well, as well as Julia Herz the Director of Craft Beer marketing for the Brewers Association who is helping me market Brewpot.com. Gary states that he is not bothered by the big guys thinking small because if they can convert typical Bud drinkers to try other styles then it will be easy to bridge the gap from AB’s Longhammer IPA to a much more delicious Inversion IPA made by Deschutes. You can read the entire article here.

Highland Brewery at Muss & Turners
Last week, I wrote an article on the beer tasting events at Muss & Turners, and I must say that those people are on the front lines of the craft beer industry. They have beer tasting events every week and last Monday, I had the rare treat of a food & beer tasting event. The owner of Highland Brewery in Asheville, NC, Oscar Wong drove down and allowed the head chef of M&T Ryan Hidinger to sample each and every beer and use his expertise to pair it with the food. The results were absolutely fantastic!! Besides Oscar being a fun and interesting man, who interestingly enough was an engineer for 22 years, the pairings complemented themselves far better than I could have tried to do! I will try and remember this the best that I can:

Gaelic Ale paired with steamed mussels (of course, I cant remember what sauce was used but the flavors went very well)

Kashmir IPA which had a very noticible bitter sawgrass flavor (which I love by the way.. I am becoming a total hophead) paired with this most amazing green salad with a creamy aeola dressing

Tasgall ale (scotch-style) that had a very dark and rich flavor paired excellently with Scotch eggs (hardboiled eggs wrapped in a spicy sausage)

I may have these next two confused and I promise to take much better notes from now on. As you can see this is the first time I have really been doing these things, so I am learning what I need to remember and what I don’t, and frankly after I got to this part of the night, remembering specific details became a little more difficult!

Oatmeal porter and the Black Mocha Stout paired with smoked pork and a chocolate cake a la mode with spiced and candied peaches.

Click here for a listing and description of Highland Brewery’s beers.

Soon, when the website is up, I will be taking FAR better notes and I will use a flavor wheel on each beer that I try. I will also be having weekly tastings at my apt, so if you want to drink some free beer and don’t mind adding your thoughts to my website, contact me and I will try and get you in!

Here is a picture of Oscar Wong and me.

Owner of Highland Brewery, Oscar Wong

Site updates:

As you saw in my last post, I got a design spec from Solar Velocity, my web developers. I was a little worried about all the blank space of barley (which a lot of people thought were wheat, or corn btw) and talked to the head of design and he told me that that would be the area where I would have rotating blurbs of featured bars, restaurants, breweries, site news etc etc. I know I asked you guys to tell me your thoughts but there is a lot of things that the picture just did not do justice. For instance they are going to animate bubbles, ever so subtly of the beers on the front page. The background is also going to change with the seasons. I promise to show you everything new as it happens! As for today, I am driving out to Athens, GA to speak with the owner of Terrapin Brewery who I met last Thursday at Muss & Turners to see how we can help each other out. Cheers for now!

Even the Anheuser Busch and the other big guys know the significance of the Craft beer market

I just read a great article today talking about what I was starting to notice: The big guys are making beer and not using their name on the bottles. It is craft beer, but with the distribution channels that all the big guys have, its very easy to get market penetration. Here is some of the article.. and as always you can click below to read the entire article.

Giant brewers think small

Major producers use size to muscle into the craft-beer market.

BY DAVID KESMODEL
Wall Street Journal

For years, makers of small-batch “craft” beers have been chipping away at the market share of America’s three beer giants. Now, the big brewers are craftily playing the same game, and winning back much of the momentum.

The major brewers generally avoid using the parent company’s name on the labels for their craft beers. Anheuser-Busch Cos., for example, lists Green Valley Brewing Co. as the maker of its Wild Hop Lager, an organic beer. Sunset Wheat from Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Co., is owned by SABMiller PLC. Blue Moon Brewing Co. is a fully-owned subsidiary of Molson Coors Brewing Co., but the parent company isn’t mentioned on its beer labels.

Through the first eight months of this year, retail sales of craft beers made by those companies or their affiliates grew at nearly three times the rate of independent craft brews, according to market-research firm Nielsen Co.

Sales of craft beers affiliated with the big three brewers in grocery, drug, convenience and major-market liquor stores surged 45 percent to $177 million through Aug. 25 against year-earlier levels, excluding sales at Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Nielsen found. (Wal-Mart doesn’t supply sales data to Nielsen or any other data-tracking firm.) Sales of independent craft brands rose 16 percent to $531 million.

Read the rest of the article here