Blue Moon (beer)

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Blue Moon
Blue Moon Beer.svg
ManufacturerBlue Moon Brewing Co. (MillerCoors)
Introduced1995
Alcohol by volume5.4%[1]
StyleWitbier
 
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Blue Moon
Blue Moon Beer.svg
ManufacturerBlue Moon Brewing Co. (MillerCoors)
Introduced1995
Alcohol by volume5.4%[1]
StyleWitbier

Blue Moon Belgian White, a Belgian-style witbier brewed by Blue Moon Brewing Co. originally in Golden, Colorado, was launched in 1995. Blue Moon Brewing Co. is a part of Tenth and Blake Beer Company, the craft and import division of Chicago-based MillerCoors. In Canada, Blue Moon Belgian White is marketed as the beer Rickard's White and is brewed in Montreal, Quebec.[2] Originally called Bellyslide Belgian White, it was created by Keith Villa, a brewer at Coors Field's Sandlot Brewery (the onsite brewery owned by the Molson Coors Brewing Company). Blue Moon from the Montreal site is also sold in the USA and exported to Europe.[3] The beer is orange-amber in color with a cloudy appearance because it is unfiltered. Blue Moon has a more pronounced orange flavor than many other beers of the style, and also has a slightly sweet flavor. The grain bill for Blue Moon includes malted barley, white wheat, and oats.

Blue Moon is sometimes served with a slice of orange, which its brewmasters claim accentuates the flavor of the brew.[4] Keith Villa admitted the orange slice garnish was mostly for attention-getting when Blue Moon is served in a bar.[5]

Blue Moon is available in cans, bottles and kegs, and has 5.4% alcohol by volume.[6] In Oklahoma, Minnesota, Colorado and Utah, the alcohol content of all Blue Moon beers bought in grocery or convenience stores is 3.2% alcohol by weight (approximately 4.0% alcohol by volume). Blue Moon Brews and Seasonal Brews sold in liquor stores are 5.4% by volume.

Awards[edit]

Craft beer controversy[edit]

Blue Moon has come under fire by the Brewers Association for not stating on the bottle that the beer is made by MillerCoors. The Brewers Association says that this omission allows the Blue Moon Brewing Company to masquerade as an independent craft brewer.[7] Independent craft brewers, such as CEO Greg Koch of Stone Brewing Co., agree that the multinational conglomerate brewers' use of bottle imagery similar to independent craft beers misleads consumers.[8]

Naming controversy[edit]

In 1999, the Confederation des Brasseries de Belgique (The Confederation of Belgian Breweries) sued the then-named Coors Brewing Company over its use of the term "Belgian White." The CBB alleged Coors' advertising was misleading, and could confuse American consumers into believing Blue Moon was made in Belgium. Coors at first responded by adding "Made in USA" and "Belgian-style" in small print to the bottle labels, but refused to change its advertising or packaging.[9]

Coors eventually settled out of court with the CBB, agreeing to change the labeling to "Belgian-style Wheat Ale." Additionally, the CBB distributes the beer to conglomerates in European countries.[10]

The New Belgium Brewery, which makes Fat Tire Amber Ale, also complied with the CBB's request for name changes.[11]

Variations of Blue Moon[edit]

In addition to their original Belgian White variety, Blue Moon Brewing Company offers Blue Moon Summer Ale, renamed Honey Moon in 2006. Honey Moon contains 5.2% alcohol by volume in a standard 12 fluid ounce bottle.

During the autumn months, Blue Moon provides Blue Moon Pumpkin Ale, renamed Harvest Moon in 2007. This variety contains the flavors of pumpkins and other autumnal spices. Harvest Moon is typically available in bottles from mid-September through December. It contains 5.7% alcohol by volume in a standard 12 fluid ounce bottle.

Blue Moon offers Blue Moon Winter Abbey Ale during the winter season. Its name was changed to Full Moon with the subtitle "Blue Moon Winter Ale" in 2007. It is brewed with natural flavor and a caramel color. Full Moon contains 5.6% alcohol in a standard 12 fluid ounce bottle.

In spring, Blue Moon provides Blue Moon Spring Blonde Ale, originally known as Rising Moon. In 2011 the recipe was changed removing the Kaffir lime leaves. The new recipe focuses more on orange and lemon peel to add the citrus flavors.

It addition to its seasonal brews, Blue Moon released a pale ale called Pale Moon in 2008, with filings commenced to create a Pale Moon Light.

Blue Moon released a revamped and renamed set of seasonal beers starting with the Winter Abbey Ale, in 2010.[12]

Blue Moon brews[edit]

In popular culture[edit]

Cambridge Police Sgt James Crowley drank Blue Moon with an orange slice at the "beer summit".[13] Designer Bobbi Brown is also said to have drank Blue Moon with an orange slice at the Yard Bird pub, Birmingham. During a filmed interview with BBC Radio 1's Chris Stark, Mila Kunis said Blue Moon is her favorite beer.[14]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]