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Big Beer news: UK strength of draught Lagunitas IPA to be reduced to 5.5%

In Uncategorized on July 24, 2018 by kmflett

Big Beer news: UK strength of draught Lagunitas IPA to be reduced to 5.5%

Last week when the Redemption focused pub the Angel of Bow tweeted that it was on its last keg of 6.2% Lagunitas IPA and in future it would be 5.5% there was social media discussion as to whether the pub was mixing it up with another Lagunitas beer.

They weren’t and the indefatigable Matthew Curtis has the story here:

https://www.goodbeerhunting.com/sightlines/2018/7/22/everything-changes-eventually-lagunitas-lowers-ipa-abv-for-uk-market

I drink Lagunitas occasionally (usually only the one pint) and I suppose there is a point that at 6.2% the beer is a bit strong to be sessionable but not strong enough to warrant sipping in a two-thirds or half measure.

Whether as Lagunitas claim they have been ‘listening’ to their customers or whether it is a brand, sales and pricing move who knows.

We do know Lagunitas is wholly owned by Heineken, that is ‘Big Beer’ a multinational beer company.

My interest in the story therefore lies in the previous history of Big Beer (and Heineken is a good deal bigger than Big Beer was when it last drank up much of the opposition in the 1960s and 1970s) and whether history is repeating itself.

If you are really old and perhaps a member of CAMRA like myself since the 1970s you may recall one of the beers that was revered back in those days, Ruddles County. It was a 5% beer (at the top end of beer strength then commercially available) and it was difficult to find. Since then the beer has been through a less than happy journey and is now brewed by Greene King at Bury St Edmunds at a strength of 4.3%. It has little relation to the original beer although Grainstore’s 1050 might do.

The issue is whether Lagunitas is now off on a similar journey and in a decade or two people will be bemoaning a perfectly decent beer ruined by Big Beer…

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