Saturday, February 09, 2008

Ale in the family

Noting that the greatest possible redemption from the juggernaut of the consolidated superbreweries of Europe is the high prestige (and high mark-up) of the American umcloofie (upper middle class foodie) and post-Chimay grups, Belgian "family" brewers have united under a label to help the discerning buyer choose between the real thing and the InBev clone. Belgian Family Brewers, which currently consists of just 12 brewers (but consisting of around 75 brands) is aiming for a sort of authentic Belgian beer appellation, denoting beers made in Belgium by brewers who have been making beer for at least 50 years, and "is an original beer, no copies of which are sold under any other name or label." Some of that country's very best exports are in on the game - Sint Bernard, Dupont, and De Konink, for example - and you get the impression they're open to adding some more top-shelf names to their roster (Cantillon, anyone?). It's a pretty good bet that certain buyers will adventure out of their usual purchases to try something under the same banner as another trusted brand. Bets are on for the first of the breweries to get bought out! (My money's on Bavik - any takers?)


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