Saturday’s ad is for “Foster’s Lager,” from 1983. This ad was made for Carlton & United, who made Foster’s Lager, although it was later part of AB-InBev but more recently was sold to Asahi. It was started by two American brothers who emigrated to Australia in 1886, and started selling it in 1889. In 1907, the Foster brothers merged with four other Melbourne breweries to created Carlton & United Breweries. The Foster’s brand barely sells in Australia, but began importing to the UK and the US in the early 1970s, and thanks to very successful advertising became a popular international brand. This one features a billboard for the UK market with an umbrella and the tagline “Londoners love it when it pours.”
Archives for September 25, 2021
Today is the birthday of James Moffat (September 25, 1808-April 4, 1863). He was the son of John Moffat, and helped his father in founding one of the earliest breweries in Buffalo, New York in 1833. It was later called the James Moffat Brewery, and after that the Moffat & Service Brewery. His son, who took over after James died, renamed it the Henry C. Moffat Brewery in 1890, which was closed by Prohibition in 1920. It briefly reopened after repeal, in 1934, as Moffat’s Ale Brewery, but closed for good the same year.
This account of his brewery is from “100 Years of Brewing,” published over 40 years after he died:
According to John & Dave’s Buffalo Brewing History, John Moffat, along with his son James, acquired what was Buffalo’s second brewery and named it the Moffat Brewery.
Kane, Peacock and Relay brewery was short lived however and a 1909 article in the Buffalo Evening Times indicates John Moffat and his son James purchased the brewing operation around 1833. Also, the 1836 Buffalo City Directory lists Moffat as a brewer at that location. The 1839 Directory lists James Moffat & Co. as a “Brewery, Soap and Candle Factory”. The Moffat Brewery continued in operation until son James died and it was sold to Arthur Fox and became the Fox and Williams Brewery. In 1876 it was sold back to the Moffat family and continued in operation at the same location until the advent of Prohibition forced their closure in 1920. After Prohibition the Phoenix Brewery continued brewing “Moffats Pale Ale” through an agreement with the Moffat family.
And “History of the City of Buffalo and Erie County, Volume 2,” published in 1884, has this to say about Buffalo’s earliest brewers, including Moffat:
Today is the 83rd birthday of Bill Owens, who founded one of California (and America’s) earliest brewpubs, Buffalo Bill’s, in Hayward, California. The brewpub opened in 1983, but in 1994 he sold it to his then-brewer, Geoff Harries, who still owns and operates it today. Bill also founded American Brewer magazine, which today is owned by Jamie Magee. Bill’s also an accomplished photographer, and has published several volumes of his photos, the most famous of which is Suburbia. More recently, he’s been involved in micro-distilling, in 2003 founding the American Distilling Institute. Please join me in wishing Bill a very happy birthday.
Bill Owens’ early book — more of a pamphlet really — on How to Build a Small Brewery.
Today is the 78th birthday of Charles Finkel, one of the pioneers of the better beer movement. He founded Merchant du Vin in 1978, the company responsible for importing a number of word-class beers to the U.S., including a few favorites of mind: Traquair, Ayinger, Westmalle, Rochefort and Orval. He also started the Seattle brewpub, Pike Brewing , in 1989, where Fal Allen was head brewer there from 1990-96. I first met Charlie around 1996 during a visit to Seattle. The following year, the Finkels sold both Pike Brewing and Merchant du Vin. In 2006, they bought back Pike Brewing. In Chicago for CBC a couple of years ago, I was fortunate enough to spend an evening out and about town with the Finkels, and I wrote a profile of them for Beer Connoisseur a few years back. Charlie and his wife Rose Ann are some of my favorite people in the industry. Join me in wishing Charlie a very happy birthday.
Charlie at CBC in Chicago a few years ago, with Mark Blasingame, owner of the Map Room.