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Weekly Growler Fill | National Beer News Roundup

Old Style Oktoberfest

Old Style makes a new beer, Abita is sued over ‘Bootlegger’, and the biggest beer merger of all time has a set close date. These are the craft beer stories you can’t miss, so keep reading to catch all of the details in this edition of the Weekly Growler Fill.


Old Style Oktoberfest Is Company’s First New Beer In 15 Years, And You Can Only Get It In The Midwest

Old Style Oktoberfest
Photo Credit: Old Style

Dear lovers of Old Style – you have something to be excited about. For the first time in 15 years, Old Style is making something new. Old Style Oktoberfest will debut in 70’s-themed throwback cans sometime this month. However, distribution is limited to the Midwest and will only be available in Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, Minnesota and Ohio. The City Brewing Company, owned by Pabst, is bringing back the classic seasonal ale as a way to pay tribute to their German heritage as well as celebrate the Midwestern-take on Oktoberfest. [Read full article]


2016 GABF Is Sold Out!

gabfIn a story that is a surprise to no one, Great American Beer Festival Tickets are sold out. The website says the tickets sold out in about an hour, but anyone who was on Ticketmaster probably felt like that window was much shorter. Don’t fret if you didn’t get tickets though, there are already hundreds of tickets on Craigslist and StubHub. You can also hit up one of the many scalpers outside of the event. See you there! [Read full article]


Abita Sued Over ‘Bootlegger’ Root Beer

abita bayou bootlegger
Photo Credit: Abita

Bootlegger’s Brewery has a bone to pick with Abita Brewing Co. Last week, Bootlegger’s filed a trademark lawsuit in the California Central District Court over the ‘Bootlegger’ brand. The argument comes after Abita released its newest product, Bayou Bootlegger, a hard root beer. Bootlegger’s Brewery believes it owns the exclusive rights since it has operated under the name since 2008. Although Bootlegger’s Brewery is a regional brand, their products are sold through the same channels as Abita, which distributes to 46 states. If Bootlegger’s gets their way, they won’t have to share shelf space with anyone they deem ‘pirates’ of their brand. [Read full article]


A-B InBev and SABMiller Say Merger Deal to Close on Oct. 10

AB Inbev rebates
Photo Credit: Getty Images

Sometime between last week and now, SABMiller and AB InBev worked out their differences. As you may recall, the largest beer merger of all time was put on hold last week due to concerns from SABMiller shareholders. Now, AB InBev has extended a new-and-improved offer of $104.3 billion and SABMiller has agreed (tentatively) to take it. This amount stems from AB InBev offering 45 pounds per share to most shareholders with another variation where the two largest shareholders, Altria and the Santo Domingo family of Colombia, get a cash and share deal. Some are concerned because the cash and share deal is worth more than the cash only option due to the recent decline in the pound. However, it appears as though all parties involved will give the transaction the green light. The merger now also has an expected close date – October 10th. Before that date, the companies will still need to jump through some hoops from the British government and officially get approval from the shareholders in September. [Read full article]


Proposed Alabama Craft Beer Rule Prompts Privacy Concerns

Alabama Alcoholic Beverage Control Board
Photo Credit:

The Alabama Alcoholic Beverage Control Board has proposed a quite invasive new policy. They want to keep tabs on the name, address, age, and phone number of any customer that purchases beer from a brewery for off-premise consumption. There has been no word on why the ABC wants such information, but it may have something to do with the 288-ounce limit on the amount of beer that can be purchased at one time. The Alabama Brewers Guild has raised concerns about the logistical nightmare this rule would create. The Board will consider the new regulations at their meeting on September 28. [Read full article]


Munich Seeks Monopoly on Oktoberfest Celebration

Hacker-Pschorr Oktoberfest 3 Steins

The city of Munich has moved to monopolize its world-famous festival, Oktoberfest. Before you freak out, let me assure you that your local stein-hoisting competition will still go on. However, if Munich is successful, other cities will need to pay a licensing fee to hold an Oktoberfest celebration or else they may face legal action. Munich has submitted their application to EUIPO, Europe’s intellectual property office. The goal of license is to protect Munich’s unique brand and would cover every aspect of Oktoberfest from marketing to paper products to Oktoberfest-themed soap. There is no word on when the application is expected to be reviewed. [Read full article]


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