RBPMail 7.03, March 2001
Real Beer Page Mail (RBPMail) began as a modest update to craft-brew events on the WWW. It evolved into a news digest and sometimes editorial forum. We present its contents here much as they were emailed to subscribers. Often, links you will see are out of date, and businesses referred to may also be long gone.
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HEINEKEN MOVES INTO GERMAN MARKET
Heineken has made its long-awaited move into Germany, the largest
beer market in Europe, through a joint venture with brewing group
Schorghuber. The Dutch brewer, the second largest in the world
behind Anheuser Busch, will own 49.9% of the new company with
Schorghuber unit Bayerische BrauHolding controlling the rest.
The company, to be called BrauHolding International, plans to
export Paulaner Weiss -- using Heineken's sales and distribution
network to market the beer around the world. Under the terms of
the deal, Heineken also gets a minority stake in German brewers
Paulaner and Kulmbacher, both controlled by Schoghuber, a Bavarian
holding group that owns one of the country's largest brewery businesses.
BELGIAN GOVERNMENT BACKS INTERBREW IN BASS
Belgium will take the U.K. government to the European Court of
Justice for blocking beer giant Interbrew's to buy the Bass brewing
interest. The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) last month
ordered the Belgian brewer to sell all of Bass' U.K. interests
in one package. Trade Secretary, Stephen Byers, ruled that the
combined Interbrew/Bass Brewers' 32% market share in the United
Kingdom would give the group too much control in the sector. The
Belgian government will challenge the DTI ruling over "whether
the European competition rules were properly respected." "We will
file a complaint in six weeks," said a spokesman for the Belgian
Ministry of Economics. Byers has given Interbrew six months to
HEINEKEN EYES BASS BRANDS
Heineken would be interested in buying some Bass brands if the
company were to be sold, Heineken Chairman Karel Vuursteen said
recently. "It would depend how the company would be split," Vuursteen
said. "We wouldn't be interested in buying a regional part but
we would look into brands." Heineken, the world's second largest
brewer after Anheuser- Busch, doesn't own brewing operations in
the U.K. but has a distributing agreement and has indicated it
would like to expand in the country.
TSINGTAO TO MAKE LOWER-PRICED BEER
Tsingtao, China's largest brewery, will make and sell its own
lower priced beer in Beijing and compete head on with foreign
brewing giants Anheuser Busch and Heineken. Rather than lower
its price, Tsingtao plans to brew beer in two plants that it purchased
last year under the Yanjing brand. "We want to take on Budweiser
and Heineken in the Beijing market," a brewery spokeswoman said.
POLAND CRACKS DOWN ON BEER ADS
Polish lawmakers have taken action to severely limit beer advertisements.
PAP news agency reports the measure includes restrictions on content
of the ads. Various laws would: Ban beer advertisements from television,
radio, cinemas and theaters from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m.; prohibit advertisements
that allude to sex, relaxation, sport activities or success; ban
beer advertisements from video cassettes, youth-oriented magazines,
magazine covers and billboards; ban consumption of alcohol on
the street and in parks; and give employers the right to demand
employees submit to alcohol tests.
GUINNESS DENIES IT'S LEAVING DUBLIN
The Irish government has bought the hop store and surrounding
buildings on Guinness' 60-acre brewery site for £15 million, adding
to speculation that Guinness is planning to move out of Dublin
city, where it has operated for the past 240 years. The proposal
is for parts of the St. James's Gate brewery to become the site
for a new multi-media village called the Digital Hub. Denying
rumors it will leave Dublin, a Guinness spokesperson said that
the site was surplus to requirements and that the brewery remained
committed to Dublin.
IRELAND CANCELS ST. PATRICK'S DAY FESTIVITIES
The Irish Republic has canceled St. Patrick's Day festivities
in Dublin because of the continued concern of the spread of foot-and-mouth
disease. This highly contagious disease has swept through animals
in Great Britain, and there has been at least one confirmed case
of the disease in Northern Ireland. Usually, more than a million
Irish pause in their penitence during Lent in favor of four days
(March 16-19) of merriment and take to the streets of Dublin to
honor St. Patrick with a festival of music, street theater, and
parades and plenty of stout.
EUROPEANS SHIFTING FROM WINE TO BEER
Studies by the World Health Organization show that wine drinkers
such as the French, Spanish and Italians have been cutting back
since 1955 while beer drinkers have nearly doubled their intake.
In 1955, French, Spanish and Italian alcohol intake was nearly
triple that of beer drinking strongholds such as Germany, Britain
and Denmark. "The average difference between the beer- and wine-drinking
countries in total consumption now appears to be no more than
a few deciliters of pure alcohol per year," according to the WHO.
EUROPEAN BREWERIES WILL PROMOTE GIANT PUB CRAWL
Dozens of breweries in Germany, the Czech Republic and Austria
are joining forces to create what they hope will be the world's
biggest pub crawl to draw drinking tourists to the three countries.
The project has already secured sponsorship from the European
Union cultural-historical fund. Tourists taking the beer route
will be able to learn about the brewing traditions of countries
and sample the products.
IRELAND: ITS PUBS & BEERS
Coleman's Authentic Irish Pub in Syracuse, N.Y., has a small door
for leprechauns right beside its regular front door, fully trimmed
and with a light above. A former Syracuse resident swears he once
saw a patron who obviously had consumed much too much stout try
to crawl through the door at closing time. Stories like that remind
us of the magic of Irish pubs -- both in Ireland and elsewhere --
and thoughts of drinking dark beer from a green island.
RODENBACH HAS PLANS THAT MAY DELIGHT GRAND
Last year, there was an outcry among beer-lovers last year when
rumors spread that Rodenbach Grand Cru might cease production. Michael
Jackson reports that Belgian brewery is working on plans which,
if they are successful, will surprise and delight devotees of its
sweet-and-sour Grand Cru.
HOT ROCKS: BREWING STEIN BEER
When Michael Jackson was on Conan O'Brien's TV show a couple of
years back there was some discussion of "hot rocks" because Jackson
brought a sample of Boscos Flaming Stone Beer. Brew Your Own online
has details about how you can make your own traditional stein beer
*****************REAL BEER PICKS***************
BADER BEER & WINE SUPPLY
The Vancouver, Wash., store is dedicated to making quality home
beverages from quality ingredients. They've got plenty of beer and
wine starter kits -- a great way to get going in the hobby.
THE BREWER'S ART
Set in a grand Mt. Vernon townhouse, The Brewer's Art offers a seasonally-influenced
menu of European-style country fare featuring meats, fish, seafood,
pasta, and vegetarian offerings. It supplements its Belgian-style
beers brewed on the premises with an exceptional menu of beers and
fine wines from around the world.
BREWLAB: THE BREWERS' LABORATORY
Brewlab's extensive teaching facilities provide full support to
a variety of teaching courses -- theoretical, practical, laboratory
and business based. Brewlab also specializes in providing services
to the brewing industry, particularly analysis and yeast supply.
The Darwin Brewery started producing specialty beers for the brewing
school at the University of Sunderland, and now offers these beers
and others from its brewery in Crook. Among its products are two
beers developed at Brewlab -- Flag Porter and Norvig Ale -- as historical
Whether you plan to toast St. Patrick at home or in the pub, the
Guinness WebStore has got just what you need to party in true GUINNESS
style. Get what you want delivered to your door direct from the
St. James's Gate Brewery in Dublin.
The complete line of "PHIL'S" equipment can be found here. These
include the famous "Phil's Phalse Bottom" and the "Phil Mill 2."
Home of Dan Listermann's famous first-timer's guide to all-grain
brewing: "So You Wanna Mash..."
England's oldest brewery, founded in 1698, continues to be one
of its most forward-looking. There is plenty of information about
its beers and pubs and it's also lots of fun. You can download
Shepherd Neame wallpaper taken from the two controversial ad campaigns
that were banned from London's underground.
Founded in 1875, Steinecker is known throughout the world as a
manufacturer of first-rate, high quality brewing plants, grain
mills, filtration systems, and automated control systems. The
company combines tradition with future-oriented technologies and
innovations. Last year it established Steinecker, Incorporated,
to serve North and Central America.
QUICKIE EMAIL SURVEY
Thanks to all who have been replying to our Quickie Surveys. We
draw one winner each month for a prize, which this month is a
Real Beer T- shirt. Last month's winners were Chip and Trudie
LAST MONTH'S QUESTION:
We asked how many of you have a second refrigerator to store beer.
More than half (56%) of you who answered have a fridge dedicated
just to beer and another 15% a second refrigerator for beer and
*********** Brewed Fresh For You! **************
The Real Beer Page announces a diverse group of brew websites
to check out:
BEVERAGE MACHINERY SERVICE
Beverage Machinery supplies a wide range of engineered products
for the brewing industry. It offers a comprehensive and versatile
line of beer handling systems which cover: kegging, filling, filtration,
pasteurizers, deaeration, etc. The quality of its work is affirmed
by its customers around the world.
BREWERS WHOLESALE SUPPLY
Brewers Wholesale Supply uses warehouses in two locations
to supply a wide range of fine quality malt, hops, and clarification
products. They are exclusive distributors of Crisp malt, Quest
brewing products and flavors, J E Siebel, Savilles and Glen Eagles
malt as well as a supplier of many other products.
PARTY PIG (tm)
For the record, the Party Pig is a self-contained beer packaging/dispensing
system. It replaces bottles and/or kegging systems for finishing
and serving beer. One Pig holds 2.25 gallons, and scores of brewpubs
and microbreweries across America use them to sell beer-to- go.
Fermenters and brewers of all levels take note: RCB Equipment
is the premier business in obtaining, and reselling quality 5
gallon ball lock kegs. The focus on quality materials and low
overhead operation allows them to offer kegs to the market at
extremely competitive prices.
THOMAS FAWCETT & SONS
The Fawcett family has been making malt in Castleford, West Yorkshire,
since the late 1780s. The company was established officially in
1809, and today the sixth and seventh generation of Fawcett are
actively involved in running it.
PABST TO CLOSE SAN ANTONIO'S PEARL BREWERY
San Antonio's historic Pearl Brewery may have dodged a bullet
for the last time. Pabst Brewing Co. has told brewery workers
they should expect to be out of work by the end of April -- and
this time Pabst means it. Pabst announced last April that it would
shutter the 115- year-old brewery, then reversed itself and promised
to keep it open three more years. It laid off about 300 workers
while keeping 80. Pabst will retain its corporate staff in San
Antonio but will operate only one brewery, the Lehigh Valley Brewery
PAUL GATZA CHOSEN IBS DIRECTOR
Paul Gatza, current director of the American Homebrewers Association,
will replace David Edgar as director of the Institute for Brewing
Studies as well as retaining his job as AHA director. Gatza's
selection, as well as the decision to consolidate positions, was
made recently after Edgar announced his resignation to pursue
new opportunities. "My vision for the Institute for Brewing Studies
includes continuing to grow the industry for the benefit of our
members and the building of strategic alliances within the industry,"
GEORGIA REJECTS STRONG BEER
The Georgia House of Representatives has rejected legislation
that would have permitted the sale of beer with an alcohol content
higher that 6% by volume. The proposal, sponsored by Rep. Stephanie
Stuckey (D-Decatur), was to raise the legal alcohol content in
beer to 14%. Proponents said the change would permit the sale
of a greater variety of beer styles in Georgia. Stuckey said she
was stunned by her bill's sound defeat, by a margin of 108-60.
"Last year, it (a similar bill) got 126 votes" in the House, she
GUINNESS TESTS 'DRAUGHT' IN A BOTTLE
Illinois stout lovers are getting a head start on St. Patrick's
Day as Guinness test markets selling "draught beer" in bottles.
At the center of the effort is a "rocket widget" that rattles
when drinkers shake the bottle. The plastic, rocket-shaped device
floats inside the bottle and is "activated" when the bottle is
opened. Each time the bottle tips, a mixture of gases is released,
creating the same creamy head Guinness drinkers expect when ordering
the beer on tap.
SAM ADAMS MAKES DONATION ON BEHALF OF FOOTBALL
Boston Beer Co., brewer of Samuel Adams beer, has made a donation
of $5,000 to Northwest PAL Football Organization on behalf of
Sam Adams, the defensive tackle and pro bowl lineman for the Super
Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens. Though Adams is not a beer drinker
himself, he agreed to participate in the donation and check presentation
because he saw it as an opportunity to help children and teens
of the Northwest PAL Football Organization. Boston Beer donated
the check to PAL at the Towanda Recreational Center in Baltimore,
FACELIFT FOR JEFFERSON BEER CELLAR
Anheuser-Busch has given $20,000 to the Thomas Jefferson Foundation
to restore the cellar at Jefferson's Monticello, Va., home where
beer probably was brewed. The project will include information
about brewing at Monticello during Jefferson's lifetime. It's
known that Jefferson's wife, Martha, used to brew light ales between
1772 and 1774. Jefferson's taste for wine is well documented,
but the foundation indicates that beer was also a drink of choice
at Monticello. Anheuser- Busch's gift was matched by John and
Bobbi Nau of Houston.
QUOTE OF THE MONTH
Chip McElroy, owner of Live Oak Brewing Co. in Austin, put Miller
Brewing's decision to close the Celis Brewery in interesting perspective.
"It's a huge loss to Austin. It's like if you had an internationally
recognized symphony and no one came to hear it," he said. "Among
beer people, the fact that Austin couldn't support Celis is like
Kennedy being shot in Dallas."
EDITORIAL: PROHIBITIONISTS RETURN TO
The neo-Prohibitionists won a round in Georgia last month
when the state House of Representatives defeated a measure that
would have allowed the sale of beer stronger than 6% (see the
story above). Now they are at work in Kansas.
Last week, Sen. Jim Barnett introduced legislation to boost the
tax on alcohol. The money raised would go to fund public schools.
That sounds great, but Barnett and several groups concerned about
underage drinking also indicated they are looking at another "benefit"
of the higher tax. If the proposed increases price some people
out of a drink, especially minors, so much the better, they said.
"I do have great concerns regarding the impact of alcohol on our
society, and, particularly, our youth," Barnett told to the Senate
Assessment and Taxation Committee, telegraphing possible underlying
David Corbin, the committee chairman, said he doubted Barnett's
tax proposal would pass but noted that anything is possible because
lawmakers are trying to find more revenue for public schools.
Sen. Sandy Praeger, R-Lawrence, a member of the committee, added
she would consider tax increases on alcohol and cigarettes, but
she opposed Barnett's proposal because it placed too much of an
increase on beer.
No kidding. Barnett's plan would increase the state tax on a
gallon of beer from 18 cents to 98 cents (545%); on wine from
30 cents to 36 cents per gallon (20%); and from $2.50 per gallon
on alcohol to $3 (20%).
Chuck Magerl, owner of Free State Brewing Co. in Lawrence, said
the measure could put his brewpub out of business. "This is a
direct attack on the life of my business and all that I've worked
for over these years to create," he said. Shawn Schlegel, owner
of Brown Bear Brewing Co., which operates just down the street
from Free State, added: "We're probably the most regulated business
in Kansas. I probably pay taxes six times a month."
In pushing for the tax, Barnett said the revenue would not come
close to paying for societal problems caused by alcohol, including
fetal alcohol syndrome, violent crime and alcohol-related vehicle
accidents. The problem with this approach is it puts the issue
"in the bottle," and not with those guilty of the offenses. History
tells us this approach, while making an emotionally persuasive
argument, doesn't work when it comes to application. Nobody gave
Prohibition more of a chance than Kansas (it passed there in 1880
and the state remained dry until 1958), but eventually it was
abandoned because Prohibition just doesn't work.
Outlawing drinking was an ugly, failed experiment, so now the
neo- Prohibitionists have taken a different approach -- basically
making it harder and more expensive for you to enjoy a glass of
beer or wine whenever they can. They are good at what they do,
using emotional statements to lead us to what appear to be logical
conclusions, but that aren't really at all.
Consider this claim from one neo-Prohibitionist: "You don't see
bottles of cabernet in the back of a kid's car at an accident
scene." There's a clear, emotional image presented here: open
bottles, car crash, injured kids. Bad, bad, bad. No one could
defend such an outcome. A great way to malign beer through extreme
You can't counter this cleverly twisted logic by arguing about
the outcome of abuses of a legal, adult activity. If it were about
traffic accidents we would confiscate cars from fatigued drivers,
who often are as dangerous as drivers with a blood alcohol level
of .08% or less. But don't go there in an argument; doing so allows
the emotional imagery to drive the debate. The issues run deeper
than car crashes, and into solutions that actually work.
So maybe that's where the real dialog should begin. Point out
what is working in the joint battles against underage drinking
and drunk driving. Real education --discussing alcohol use openly
with our children -- will save more kids than any "sin tax," no
matter the intended use of the proceeds.
Consider these facts:
- The percentage of high-school seniors who reported having a
drink in the last 30 days is 12% lower in 2000 than in 1990, and
down 28% since 1982.
- Today there are 2.2 million fewer teen drinkers than there
were in 1990, and 3.2 million fewer teen drinkers than there were
- The number of people killed in drunk-driving crashes has declined
32% since 1990 and 41% since 1982.
You'll find more like this at
They are proof that real education works a lot better than Prohibition