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Brewery snubs AB InBev with new ale

Michigan-based Bell’s Brewery has delivered a “screw you” to AB InBev, creating the pumpkin peach ale that the global brewer used to mock craft beer in its divisive Superbowl ad.

The AB InBev Superbowl ad specifically mentioned “pumpkin peach ale” as the kind of beer that people “fuss over” (Photo: Youtube)
Bell’s have launched just 48 bottles of their own Pumpkin Peach Ale, a “screw you” to AB InBev according to founder Larry Bell (Photo: Bell’s)

Producing just 48 bottles of the ale, made using peach puree and a pumpkin grown on the roof of Bell’s owner Larry Bell’s home, the beer can literally be described as a message in a bottle for AB InBev.

The global brewer used its multi-million-dollar Superbowl half-time slot in February to launch an upfront assault on the craft beer movement, poking fun at the unique flavours and the caricatured “hipster” fans that help to define the industry.

With the ad specifically mentioning “pumpkin peach ale” as the kind of beer that moustachioed beer fans “fuss over”, Bells Brewery took it upon itself to create the flavour as a cutting riposte.

Speaking to the Chicago Tribune, owner Larry Bell described the beer as “a screw you” to AB InBev, because “they sent us a screw you”.

AB InBev, brewer of global lager brands like Budweiser, has been widely criticised for the advertisement, which arguably stirred an already brewing mentality of “them versus us” between craft beer and “big beer”.

Accusations of hypocrisy have been levelled at AB since the Superbowl ad was broadcasted, especially given that in recent years the brewer has been buying up several craft beer producers.

Earlier this week, the founder and head brewer of Seattle-based Elysian brewery – the craft operation bought out by AB InBev in January – unexpectedly resigned.

Dick Cantwell, who has been regarded as one of the leading lights in the craft beer movement, said that working under AB InBev was no longer possible as he considered himself “a craft brewer, past, present and future.”

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