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Craft Brewing and Distilling News for September 10, 2014

September 10, 2014

•New Hampshire-based Smuttynose Brewing Company is entering the Texas market through a partnership with distributor Ben E. Keith Beverages. The statewide launch follows Smuttynose’s May opening of a new brewery that increased its capacity to about 65,000 barrels. Including Texas, Smuttynose’s distribution footprint now covers 25 states and Washington D.C. Ben E. Keith, part of the Anheuser-Busch network, has several craft beer brands already within its portfolio, including Sierra Nevada, New Belgium, Brooklyn Brewery, Deschutes Brewing, Dogfish Head Brewery and Lagunitas Brewing.

•Scottish craft brewer Innis & Gunn is set to add English cider brand Thatchers to its U.S. import stable beginning this month under a three-year agreement. Innis & Gunn USA, based in New York, will take on all administrative, marketing and promotional efforts for Thatchers’ flagship brand. The partnership kicks off with this month’s launch of Thatchers Gold, a 4.8%-abv cider that is available on- and off-premise in 500-ml. bottles (retailing at $3.99) and in four-packs of 330-ml. bottles ($8.99). Kegs are slated to follow in early 2015. Innis & Gunn USA, Inc. was established in 2010 and represents its Edinburgh-based parent company’s beer portfolio in more than 20 states. Innis & Gunn says it expects its U.S. volume to reach 3 million bottles in 2014 on 32% year-on-year growth.

•Escondido, California’s Stone Brewing Co. has partnered with homebrewer Chris Banker and Tijuana-based Cerveceria Insurgente to release the Chris Banker/Stone/Insurgente Xocoveza Mocha Stout. The new brew is based on a recipe created by Banker, who won first place at the annual Stone Homebrew Competition & American Homebrewers Association Rally earlier this year. Billed as a Mexican-inspired offering, Xocoveza Mocha Stout is made with coffee, vanilla, cocoa, cinnamon, nutmeg and pasilla peppers, resulting in a blend of chocolate and spice notes. The limited edition entry, which can be consumed fresh or cellared for up to several years, is currently available in 22-ounce bottles and on draft across select U.S. markets, both on- and off-premise.

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