Brendan Peacock, the man that sued 21st Amendment in early 2017, is suing another brewery. This time, it’s Pabst Blue Ribbon.
This lawsuit is focused on the Olympia Beer brand, owned by PBR, and their slogan “It’s in the water”.
The beer’s description uses the term “pure mountain water” in the course of describing the beer’s ingredients. Peacock, 37, asserts in the filing that allusion that the water originates from a spring in Tumwater, Washington is false. In reality, the water is sourced from reservoirs Los Angeles County.
That doesn’t sit well with Peacock, who identifies himself as a “beer, and craft beer consumer” according to the March 15th filing in California Eastern District Court, Sacramento Office.
He purchased the beer from a grocery store in April of last year and was deceived by the advertising. Apparently, it is unclear where the water actually comes from in the Los Angeles County. Peacock obviously did some Googling and found stories of groundwater contamination dating back to the years prior to his ill-fated purchase.
Peacock is seeking class-action status. This isn’t his first lawsuit rodeo either.
In Spring of 2017, Peacock sued 21st Amendment Cafe, (Case # 3:17-cv-01918) stating he paid a premium price for the craft beer, thinking it was brewed in California. In reality, some of the beer was being produced in Minnesota (as the brewery mentioned on their website) while they built their San Leandro facility. That fact didn’t sit well with Peacock who is upset the beer was not brewed in the bay area, prompting the lawsuit.
An “Order to File Stipulation of Dismissal” was just filed on March 6th. It appears that 21st Amendment is settling with Peacock. A dismissal or statement on the case is due April 20th.
Peacock has also sued a guacamole maker over ingredient and marketing as well.
The Brewers Association, a not-for-profit trade group dedicated to America’s independent brewers have added a few new entries to their Beer Style Guidelines for 2018. Think of it like Merriam-Webster adding words to the dictionary.
Quite obviously, the nearly 6,500 breweries in the United States have been inspired by historical beer styles. India Pale Ale, pilsner, and gose evolved in England, Czech Republic, and Germany, respectively. When it comes to America, we’ve always done our own thing. Our brewing methods are no different.
Today, the Brewers Association announced the addition of the “Juicy or Hazy Ale Style”, “Contemporary American-style Pilsner”, “Classic Australian-Style Pale Ale and Australian-Style Pale Ale” and “Gose and Contemporary Gose” to the style guidelines. Basically, brewing these aren’t “riffs” on classic styles anymore. They are legit.
The haze craze in the U.S. is real, much to the chagrin of many pro brewers that shelled out 100s of thousands of dollars on centrifuges. The big ole’ glass of turbidity more closely resembles orange juice than beer at times. Soon, brewers will be able to win medals with their juicy, oaty, hop murk in both the Juicy/Hazy Pale Ale and IPA categories.
The Contemporary American-style Pilsener has arrived as well, addressing what the BA calls “marketplace expansion”. This style is defined by American brewed pilsners with a higher hop aroma then found in pre-prohibition styles.
Hop aroma and ﬂavor is medium to high. While traditional versions exhibit hop-derived attribute typical of noble-type hops, contemporary versions will exhibit hop and aroma attribute typical of a wide range of American hop varieties, including citrus, fruit-like or others.
The burgeoning craft beer scene in Austraila has prompted split of the pale ale category into the ” Classic Australian-Style Pale Ale and Australian-Style Pale Ale” subsets. According to the BA, the Classic Australian-Style Pale Ale can run slightly darker and typically exhibits relatively lower hop aroma. The Aussie-style pale ale is apparently a more pale, hoppier pale. Simply put, a U.S. brewer can define a pale as brewed with modern Austrailian hop varieties.
Finally, the gose. Another unique style that is on fire in the United States. This category has been split into the Classic (Leipzig-Style) Gose and the Contemporary-Style Gose. This addition addresses the American departure from the German traditional brewing style. Of the 2018 updates, this update is the most technical update, dealing with the differences in fermentation methods from Classic to Contemporary.
There are hundreds of revisions, edits, format changes to this year’s guidelines, according to the Brewers Association. The above are the most noteworthy in an ever-growing beer industry.
For the full 2018 guidelines, visit BrewersAssociation.org.
The Brewer’s Association, the not-for-profit trade group that represents small and independent craft brewers has releasd the annual “Top 50” list for 2017.
In the craft segment, Yuengling still holds the #1 spot in sales volume, followed by Boston Beer, Sierra Nevada, and New Belgium. New to the top 5 is Duvel Moortgat, which includes Firestone Walker, Ommegang, and Boulevard Brewing.
You’ll see a name on this list after acquisitions that closed in 2016. CANarchy, The Craft Brewery Collective checks in at #9, funded by Fireman Capital Partners. The group includes Oskar Blues, Cigar City Brewing, Perrin Brewing, Wasatch and Squatters Craft Beer.
Below you’ll see the Top 50 brewing companies in the United States overall, by sales volume. No surprise, AB InBev still holds the #1 spot, followed by Miller Coors. Constellation has bumped Pabst from the #3 spot.
In contrast, the largest craft brewery Yuengling appears 6th in overall volume.
Dogfish Head Dragons & YumYums, a collaboration with the band The Flaming Lips, has arrived.
Delaware based Dogfish Head is no stranger to musical collaborations. Previous releases include Bitches Brew inspired by Miles Davis, American Beauty with the Grateful Dead, and Beer Thousand with Guided By Voices. (Don’t forget the collaboration with Pearl Jam, Deltron 3030 as well.) The newest musically inspired creation by the folks in The First State is Dogfish Head Dragons & YumYums – a liquid tribute to The Flaming Lips.
Most everyone knows The Lips thanks to their 1993 hit, “She Don’t Use Jelly”. Their elaborate and over-the-top shows and known eccentricity makes partnering with the original “Off-Centered” folks at Dogfish Head.
Dragons & YumYums is billed as a “lip-smacking” tart pale ale brewed with dragonfruit, yumberry, passionfruit, pear juice and black carrot. This is no simple fruit ale. Per Dogfish Head “Us coming together to make, what might be, the world’s first vinyl record filled with pink colored beer… is somehow… perfect!!”
With a shared goal of making this collaboration an epic, sensory enveloping experience at the intersection of creative beer paired with creative music, both Dogfish and The Flaming Lips believe this is the first time a band has been so pivotal and deeply involved in the creation of the beer, the ingredients that were chosen, and the authoring of a song made specifically in tribute of the beer.
Expect Dogfish Head Dragons & YumYums will hit shelves ahead of Record Store Day 2018 – April 21st.
Highland Brewing Company is closing their doors this week. For four days. When they open again on February 23rd, Highland will look a little different.
For multiple decades now, Highland Brewing has sported a kilted Scotsman holding a pint, with the tagline “just a wee bit different”. This week sadly, the Scotsman is retiring.
Leah Wong Ashburn, the president of Highland Brewing and daughter of founder Oskar Wong knew a little while ago that Asheville, North Carolina’s first craft brewery needed a branding change. “Over two decades, we led with beer, and in recent years, we developed our beer portfolio significantly with fresh new styles and our innovative spirit is firing,” Ashburn says. “I love that we are now aligning the message.”
Highland spent most of 2017 collaborating with Austin, Texas-based Helms Workshop on the refresh. The entire beer lineup will still be labeled under the Highland name, but will now depict the Blue Ridge Mountains, where the brewery calls home. The pioneer compass you see is a reminder that Highland was Asheville’s first craft beer.
” We believe in authenticity…You act the same way when no one else is looking. You deliver the same level of quality every time that only you could notice. You are authentic when your actions align with your words. And when our brand aligns with our beer. This refreshed brand is who we are.”
Highland will host a launch celebration in their taproom on February 23rd. Look for the refreshed look on all Highland bottles, cans, and tap handles hitting shelves in the near future.
Stone Brewing is a fierce defender of craft beer. Just ask co-founder Greg Koch about his thoughts on craft beer vs. big beer.
Today, Greg Koch has announced Stone’s intention to sue MillerCoors the very blatant use of “Stone” in their Keystone branding.
In a YouTube video, Koch goes into detail describing the various ways in which MillerCoors has used “Stone” as a very prominent piece of their beer marketing for Keystone. Koch contends this move is intentional, in order to create consumer confusion.
“In the world of beer, the name “Stone” is ours,” Koch says
Koch claims this isn’t a marketing stunt. “This is a weird way to get publicity. We’d rather talk about our own beer.”
According to Stone Brewing, MillerCoors attempted to file a trademark for Stone but was reject (for seemingly obvious reasons). This hasn’t stopped the brewery from using the very prominent “Stone” in their marketing push.
“Keystone’s rebranding is no accident. MillerCoors tried to register our name years ago and was rejected. Now its marketing team is making 30-pack boxes stacked high with nothing but the word ‘STONE’ visible. Same for Keystone’s social media, which almost uniformly has dropped the ‘Key.’ We will not stand for this kind of overtly and aggressively deceptive advertising. Frankly, MillerCoors should be ashamed.” – Dominic Engels, Stone Brewing CEO
Koch says this can all go away if they simply put the “Key” back in “Keystone”.
Stone Brewing is represented in the lawsuit by Noah Hagey, Rebecca Horton and Toby Rowe of San Francisco litigation boutique BraunHagey & Borden LLP.
This is a developing story…
Hot on the heels of Elon Musk sending a Tesla into space is another craft brewery with galactic goals. Oregon’s Bridgeport Brewing recently sent their original IPA to the stars.
Lying just above the troposphere (where the planet’s clouds and weather generate) is the stratosphere. At the equator, the stratosphere begins around 60,000 feet, or roughly 11 miles up. Would you call the stratosphere actual “space”? NASA, which was formed in 1958, has loosely stated space begins above the Earth’s lower atmosphere (troposphere). The U.S. state department hasn’t made anything official either, just some guidelines.
Felix Baumgartner’s epic record-breaking balloon jump in 2012 was 24 miles up from the upper level of the stratosphere. (Side fact, he hit a top speed of 843.6 mph on that jump, aka Mach 1.25.)
Basically, if you’re in the stratosphere, it’s fair to start saying you are in space. Even if it’s just the beginning of space.
Celebrating the 22nd anniversary of Bridgeport’s Original IPA, the brewery sent three bottles soaring 22 miles high in the sky in south Texas. The IPA hit the stratosphere and landed just 55 miles away from the “launch” pad.
You might be wondering – Why? Simple. It’s something freaking cool to do. Bridgeport has been brewing India pale ale longer that most breweries out there, and they wanted to celebrate with something more than a cake. We’d send something to space in a heartbeat if we had the budget for it.
The most impressive part of this little endeavor is that none of the beers were broken. Remember that egg drop experiment where you had to protect your egg from a rooftop drop?
I bet these guys won every time.