Close Menu

Hofmeister to make craft beer comeback

Hofmeister, a Scottish lager which made a name for itself throughout the 80s thanks to its mascot George the bear, is to be relaunched as a German craft beer.

(L-R) Spencer Chambers and Richard Longhurst of Hofmeister

Hofmeister was a 3.2% abv pale lager produced by Scottish Courage from the 1980s to 2003.

The brand was well-known throughout the 1980s for its advertisements featuring George, a bear sporting a shiny, yellow jacket and pork pie hat whose slogan was “follow the bear.”

The brand was axed in 2003 due to declining sales of 47% year-on-year. Hofmeister was said to have suffered from the explosion in imported premium beers such as Carlsberg, Fosters and Stella Artois.

“As one of the most loved TV ads of the 80s, people remember George the Bear with great affection”, said Andrew Marsden, the new chairman of Hofmeister.

“However times have moved on and so we are bringing back a more grown up brand which resonates with modern craft beer drinkers whilst still retaining the spirit of George’’

Following a 13-year hiatus, the Hofmeister brand is back and has been made over into a 5% abv Helles lager, made in Bavaria by a fourth generation family-owned brewery nestled on the edge of Ebersberger Forest.

The original brand was axed in 2003 due to declining sales of 47% year-on-year.

The brand is now owned by a group of independent UK entrepreneurs. Working with Marstons PLC, the revamped beer will be available in 330ml bottles and 50 litre kegs in bars and pubs nationwide from November 2016.

Commenting on the brand’s reemergence as a craft lager Spencer Chambers, Hofmeister CEO, said: “Now more than ever, we are experimenting and enjoying craft beer – with the craft beer scene in the UK continuing its explosive growth”.

“Hofmeister is iconic so it feels right to bring back the brand, but with an authentic Helles lager which appeals to our more sophisticated palates.”

Hofmeister may have been given a second lease of life, but not all drinks brands are as lucky. Take in some nostalgia by checking out our round-up of top 10 demised drinks brands here.

It looks like you're in Asia, would you like to be redirected to the Drinks Business Asia edition?

Yes, take me to the Asia edition No