MillerCoors relies on Prohibition story to test-market new beer

CHICAGO: MillerCoors is giving history lessons in four markets in the US to test a new beer for the company, Batch 19.

CHICAGO: MillerCoors is giving history lessons in four markets in the US to test a new beer for the company, Batch 19. Based on a pre-Prohibition recipe, the new brew will be introduced in Chicago, Washington, San Francisco, and Milwaukee starting in April.

"In the test-pilot model, we go with discovery, and through sampling, we allow consumers to discover the brand," said Julian Green, director of media relations for MillerCoors. He added that the company will work with retailers and distributors.

Working with AOR Dig Communications, MillerCoors is doing targeted outreach to certain accounts in the cities, which are known as well-developed markets for beer. It will also conduct traditional media relations, and the campaign will include a Batch 19-specific Web site and Facebook page.

Keith Villa, the master brewer who discovered the recipe in the cellars of the company's Golden Brewery in Colorado, will serve as a brand ambassador, sharing the story of Batch 19 and its history.

"It's about telling the story, the pre-Prohibition style lager," Green said. "We believe the beer's great flavor profile combined with the pre-Prohibition mystique of this brand will resonate well with consumers."

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