Anheuser-Busch to take over Goose Island was the headline that caught my attention a few months ago. Goose Island is an awesome brewery with an excellent restaurant that I had the great pleasure of dining in last fall.
I had an opinion about this acquisition, and it’s not been popular. Now that the dust has settled, I think it’s safe to bring it back up. Are you ready? I think that this a good thing.
Although I love craft and homebrewed beer, I am thinking this acquisition is a step in the right direction for mass production of good beers. ImBev bought Budweiser.. and now they actually make a decent American Ale which is true to style. (I’m not saying it’s a world class beer; I’m just saying it’s actually beer.)
Most of the people I know that drink yellow fizzy water fall into two categories. Either they do it because they don’t know better or they can’t afford to do otherwise. I think that this acquisition will add another selection to the masses who might not otherwise have an opportunity to buy real beer.
It looks like the pessimists have been rooting for craft beer and not for the success of Goose Island. (Stonyfield faced similar problems when they wanted to mass produce their organic dairy products. Most organicists/hippies didn’t approve of that business concept, failing to recognize the need for healthy product across America.)
I’m not worried because Goose Island founder and president, John Hall has said that the “new structure will preserve the qualities that make Goose Island’s beers unique, strictly maintain our recipes and brewing processes.”