Monthly Archives: September 2008

News: Bail out blues hit beer market too

Shares of the nation’s beer and spirits makers fell Monday as Wall Street tumbled on news that lawmakers rejected a proposed $700 billion bailout plan for the financial industry.

The House of Representatives defeated the proposal Monday, and the news sent the Dow Jones industrials down more than 735 points. Investors are worried the failure to pass the rescue plan will make the current credit crisis worse. President Bush and congressional leaders had sought the package, which was defeated in the House 228-205.

Shares of Constellation Brands Inc.(nyse: STZ – news – people ) fell $1.22, or 5.5 percent, to close at $20.89. Shares ofFortune Brands Inc. (nyse: FOPRA –news – people ) fell $2.96, or 4.9 percent, to $57.01.

Beer maker Molson Coors Brewing Co. (nyse: TAP – news – people ) saw its shares slip $1.62, or 3.5 percent, to $44.79. Shares of Anheuser-Busch Cos. (nyse: BUD – news people ) fell $2.52, or 3.8 percent, to $63.50.


News: Socialized beer in Canada

WATERLOO, Ont. — Brick Brewing Co. Ltd. is welcoming new financial support from the Ontario government to market its brands.

The province announced Friday it will provide $8 million over four years to help small breweries, on top of an existing $1-million-a-year microbrewery strategy.

Brick, the largest Canadian-owned publicly held brewery in Ontario, did not specify Monday what its share of the cash would be.

But chairman and founder Jim Brickman stated: “It is encouraging that the government recognizes the importance of a strong, vibrant, locally owned and operated Ontario craft brewing industry.”

Under the plan announced Friday, Ontario breweries producing less than 30 million litres per year will share in $1.8 million a year for four years. The taxpayers will also provide $200,000 annually to the Ontario Craft Brewers Association.

News: Anheuser-Busch deal approved

InBev SA shareholders on Monday backed the company’s $52 billion takeover of Anheuser-Busch – a deal that would form the world’s largest brewer under the name Anheuser-Busch InBev.

Shareholders also approved a capital increase and share issue that would raise up to $10 billion to pay for part of the deal. That covers the existing equity bridge financing of $9.8 billion in place since the deal was announced in July, InBev said, with an extra margin to cover any major currency fluctuations until the deal closes.

Shareholders of St.Louis-based Anheuser-Busch still neeed to approve the deal.

Anheuser-Busch already plans to shed 1,185 positions – mostly by offering early retirement and not filling existing vacancies.

News: Bulgarian Beer Goes Abroad

Hey, why not. According to this report Bulgarian breweries have started making a mark on the international scene with beer exports rising in Romania, Macedonia, Spain, Portugal, the US and Hungary, Vladimir Ivanov, president of the Union of Brewers in Bulgaria (UBB), told Bulgarian National Radio.

To back his statement UBB’s data showed that beer production and exports have increased significantly in the past 12 months, ending this July. A total of 5.399 million hectolitres of beer were sold, compared to the 5.352 million in the previous 12 month period.

Ledenika & MM Brewery is responsible for its significant contribution to the increase of beer sales. The brewery has a domestic market share of about 10 per cent. Its market share also had an impact on exports, with figures overall reaching 78 358 hectolitres in 12 months, compared to the identical time period last year with 69 173 hectolitres exported.

Zagorka, Bulgaria’s best selling beer and a brand with the largest portfolio topped the chart with 1.716 million hectolitres, while Kamenitza ranked second with 1.571 million hectolitres, followed by Danish Carlsberg with 1.468 million hectolitres.

Review: Weyerbacher Heresy

An Imperial Stout brewed by
Weyerbacher Brewing Co.

Easton, Pennsylvania USA

ABV: 8.2 %

Glassware: Snifter

Dark as night on the pour with a huge, huge head. A great looking beer. I get a little raisin, a lot of chocolate and some other fruits buried in there. Flavor is pretty thick with some good chocolate, coffee and wood characteristics on the tongue. I get a very tart feeling on the palate – not sure if that is the whiskey or not. A good beer. One big one and you are feelin’ good.

My score: 3.8

Offbeat News: Kid Rock to come out with a beer

Drinks Americas Holdings, based here in Connecticut, a leading owner, developer and marketer of premium beverages,announced that the Company has signed an agreement with Kid Rock to develop and market a premium domestic beer.

Drinks and Kid Rock will work together to develop and bring to market a product targeted to beer drinkers who appreciate value with an easy to drink, traditional, good tasting American manufactured beer.

J. Patrick Kenny CEO Drinks Americas stated, “Kid Rock is a reflection of great American rock and roll music and the American spirit, and we think we can create a beer in that same image. Having Kid Rock as a Drinks Americas partner is an exciting and big addition to our portfolio of icon brands. There is no question in our mind that people will try a beer that Kid Rock will stand by and when they like it, a great and incredibly valuable trademark will be created with his support.”

Kenny said, “Drinks will come to market rapidly with Kid Rock’s beer. We are in the process of interviewing breweries now and working with Kid Rock to make sure that every aspect of the beer and the marketing support is as exciting as everything else Kid Rock does. We think that by very early spring we will have a compelling product and that consumers will love the look, taste, and branding that Kid Rock creates. This is a tremendous asset and a valuable addition to Drinks Icon portfolio. The continued expansion of our portfolio is great news for our shareholders.”

More details regarding the brand will be released in the coming weeks.

I’m guessing it will be a remake oh an older beer. Pun intended.

Review: North Coast Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout

An Imperial Stout brewed by
North Coast Brewing Company

Fort Bragg, California USA

ABV: 9%

Why I am drinking this in the early fall is a mystery but I couldn’t help myself. This beer pours as dark as night, even the head is tinted brown. Cold: an aroma of chocolate, coffee and licorice hit you over the head hard. As it warms and sits for a bit the aromas, as well as the flavors, really start to pan out. This is a really hardy drinker. I had a very bitter taste on my tongue for parts of this. Flavor is caramel and toffee sweetness up front that fades into a slight coffee finish. It was a great beer but not the best stout I have had.

Beer Advocate food pairings: General (Chocolate, Dessert, Digestive)

My score: 4%