Reports in the Wall Street Journal and the Rocky Mountain Daily News today bring news that the Molson Coors Brewing Company has incorporated a high-end beer division to compete in the better beer segment. The RMDN article reports:
Coors Brewing Co. plans to roll out upscale beers via a new Golden-based unit called AC Golden Brewery.
The new “brand incubation company” will “introduce above-premium beers to the marketplace using a new approach” that’s less splashy than typical “national rollouts,” according to a Coors announcement obtained by the Rocky Mountain News that was distributed to company employees and distributors.
The news was first reported by Beer Marketer’s Insights Express, a trade industry publication.
Golden-based Coors’ chief brands are Coors Light, Keystone Light and Blue Moon.
Incorporation papers filed in April with the Colorado secretary of state’s office list an AC Golden Brewing Co. formed by Pete Coors. Coors is chairman of Coors Brewing and vice chairman of parent Molson Coors.
According to the Coors announcement, AC Golden Brewery will introduce its brands in the similar stealth way Coors built up its Blue Moon brand. A number of craft beer drinkers who enjoy Blue Moon Belgian White Ale aren’t aware it’s a Coors product.
Coors has long been slow to adjust to changes in the beverage alcohol market (Aspen Edge anyone?). Despite its missteps, Coors has a long proven dedication to the better beer segment. Check out the Beer Scribe interview with Tom Hail, brewer for the Sandlot Brewery at Coors Field to learn more about Coors’ history in the better beer segment. I look forward to seeing what offerings this division serves up and whether the brewery continues to treat its specialty releases with respect.