It seems there’s something foul going on at baseball stadiums across America, and it has nothing to do with balls.
He-he, I said balls!
First there was the “craft beer destination” at Yankee Stadium that was serving Blue Moon, Leinenkugel’s and Crispin Cider, three beverages that aren’t craft beer, at least according to the Brewers Association. Hell, one of ‘em’s not even a beer at all!
Now it’s “Craft Beer Night” at U.S. Cellular Field, home of the Chicago White Sox, where they’ll be serving…wait for it…Blue Moon, Leinenkugel’s and Crispin Cider. That’s right, their “craft” beer night features exactly zero craft beers.
The event is presented by MillerCoors, the same mega-brewer that tried to mislead Yankee fans into believing that this bunch of brews qualify for the “craft” designation.
Here’s how “Craft Beer Night presented by MillerCoors” is described on MLB.com:
Enjoy a variety of beers from Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company, Blue Moon Brewing Company, Crispin Cider Company as well as other domestic and Import beers.
Ooh, I can only guess what the other domestic beers might be. Actually, I don’t have to guess, as there’s a clue right there on the keepsake plastic pilsner glass attendees receive. One side is emblazoned with the White Sox logo, and the other features the Miller Lite logo, because nothing says “craft” like a “Lite” beer!
Having this misrepresentation happen once in New York could be seen as an honest gaffe, but having it happen again in Chicago indicates that there’s a clear strategy at MillerCoors to blur the line between authentic craft beers and these “crafty” lookalikes.
It makes me nuts to think that some regular Joe or Judy is going to show up at this event and knock back a Blue Moon or a Leinenkugel’s Oktoberfest (or worse yet, a Miller Genuine Draft) and think they’ve experienced everything craft beer has to offer.
The good news is that U.S. Cellular Park has a “Midwest Brews” kiosk that serves a decent selection of honest-to-goodness craft beers, ranging from New Holland Mad Hatter IPA, to Bells Oberon, to Two Brothers Brewing Ebel’s Weiss, just to name a few. Of course none of these come with a stylish commemorative glass, but I imagine beer geeks wouldn’t want a plastic Miller Lite memento cluttering up their cupboard anyway.