MILWAUKEE -- Lowenbrau entered the microbrew craze last week when it began the rollout of the first of a line of "old-world style" specialty beers under the Lowenbrau Craftbiers nameplate.
Lowenbrau Premium Pils and Lowenbrau Marzen, the first two beers in the Lowenbrau Craftbiers family, debuted in San Diego and Santa Barbara, Calif.; Hartford, Conn.; Chicago; Indianapolis; Baltimore, and all of Wisconsin and Minnesota.
In September the rollout expands dramatically to encompass all of Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Massachusetts, New Jersey, North Carolina, Washington state, Oregon, the rest of Indiana and southern California.
The Lowenbrau Craftbiers line is marketed by Lowenbrau Brewing U.S.A., which is a partnership between Lowenbrau Brewery of Munich, Germany, and Miller Brewing Co. here.
"In September we will be introducing an Oktoberfest seasonal beer. We will follow that up in early 1997 with a Lowenbrau Schwarzes Lager. While the Oktoberfest is seasonal, the others are available year round," Kari McGrath, a spokeswoman for Miller Brewing Co., told SN.
The domestically produced line is available in six-pack bottles, with packaging that has "an old-world flavor to it," McGrath said. It is also available on tap.
It will be priced to be competitive with microbrews and other specialty beer products, she said, adding that Lowenbrau suggests the Craftbiers be merchandised refrigerated, although they are shelf stable.
McGrath said the partnership is using print, radio and outdoor advertising to promote the Lowenbrau Craftbiers products. The campaign will use the tag line "Bringing Back German Traditions One Beer at a Time."