Colorado brewery tries to convert Manning

20th January, 2014 by Rupert Millar

A brewery in Colorado has been trying to introduce NFL star Peyton Manning to craft beer after he expressed a preference for Bud Light.

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“Omaha! Omaha!” Peyton Manning calls a play against the San Diego Chargers

The Denver Broncos quarterback recently told reporters after a game against the San Diego Chargers that he was focused on having a cold beer (a Bud Light) rather than the upcoming American Football Conference (AFC) championship game with the New England Patriots.

However, Colorado has the fourth highest ratio of craft brewers to residents in the US and one brewery decided it wouldn’t stand for his choice of beer.

Left Hand Brewing sent three cases of its Polestar Pilsner, Sawtooth Ale and Milk Stout Nitro to the Denver Broncos’ stadium with a note which read: “Mr Manning. Just like you we decided to call an audible and change the play at the line to provide you with some Colorado craft beer from Left Hand Brewery.

“We feel it’s a better play call.”

The beer was apparently delivered to the Sports Authority Field at Mile High where the Broncos play but there has been no word on whether Manning and his team mates tucked into the brews – at least not yet.

Bud Light’s parent brewery, Budweiser, is an official sponsor of the NFL so it is possible that Manning’s choice of beer was no accident.

Meanwhile, the NFL sent a “cease and desist” letter to another Colorado brewery, West Flanders Brewing after it “engaged in unauthorized promotional use of…NFL Marks.”

The brewery had made a single keg series for the AFC championship game between Denver and the New England Patriots last weekend, which it named “Brett on the Broncos” and termed an “AFC Championship Style Ale.”

Brett on the Broncos glass

The offending beer from West Flanders Brewing. The name has since been changed to “Omaha! Omaha! Brett!”

According to the Denver Post, the extremely trademark protective NFL immediately found out and a day later a letter arrived telling the brewery to stop.

Both “Broncos”, the “AFC” and the colour scheme blue and orange when used in conjunction with the word “Broncos” are all registered trademarks.

The brewery quickly changed the name to “Omaha! Omaha! Brett!”, a reference to a playcall Manning has used dozens of times in the post-season games at the snap, and sales of the beer went ahead.

Whatever Manning was drinking between matches it clearly worked as he led the Broncos to a 26-16 victory over the Patriots on Sunday (19 January) to take his team to the Super Bowl.

They will face the Seattle Seahawks this February in Super Bowl XLVIII and a “db Guide to the Big Game”, with a look at the teams and which craft beers supporters should drink to show their allegiance, will appear online towards the end of the month.

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