By Matt Goldstein
If you haven’t watched the sunset in Montego Bay sipping a Red Stripe lager, relaxing with a plate of jerked chicken or Ackee and salt fish, well, you have some more living to do in this life. In Jamaica, there is a way of life that can only be experienced, not described. It’s just a soul and style of the people. They know how to eat, drink, make rum, brew beer and smoke weed. Diageo global spirits is now moving production of Jamaica’s Red Stripe Lager to the United States. City Brewing in Western PA will take over production and brew the bulk of production for the U.S.. If this move makes Red Stripe Light more available throughout the U.S., we at Whiskey Goldmine feel that it is a great opportunity to make a move into the premium light beer market, currently controlled by Amstel Light, Corona Light and Heinekin Light. We feel Yuengling Light Lager has the same opportunity right now and they are clearly making a push.
For Red Stripe Lager however, this might not be the best time to try to expand in a market where craft beer is exploding. Average, slightly premium lagers such as Red Stripe might be marginalized and pushed out over time. Diageo Global Spirits also currently owns Johnnie Walker, Crown Royal, JeB, Windsor, Buchanan’s and Bushmills whiskies, Smirnoff, Cîroc and Ketel One vodkas, Baileys, Captain Morgan, Jose Cuervo, Tanqueray and Guinness. That’s not peanuts.