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Goose Island’s Bryan Taylor made the peach Halia beer in honor of his friend.
Photo courtesy Goose Island
The beer deities must be smiling at the timing: This week, Goose Island released a series of beers heretofore known as the Sisters (one of those beers hasn’t been seen since 2011, the year Goose was sold to Anheuser-Busch/InBev). In this same week, one of the country’s major independent craft breweries, Kansas City’s Boulevard Brewing, was sold to Belgium’s Duvel Moortgat for the tidy sum of $100 million, prompting a mixed response (to put it mildly) that was perhaps familiar to a Goose Island employee around in the days of its 2011 sale.
Brewer and Head Cellar guy Brian Taylor is just that Goose Island employee. In fact, get this—he’s actually worked for both breweries.
Taylor was a part of Goose when they were sold to Budweiser. “As far as I’m concerned, it was great for everyone except the outsiders,” he told me. “There are plus sides to [the sale] that people will never know.”
Having seen firsthand how A-B stayed hands-off with Goose, he’s unconcerned about this week’s news, saying, “What people don’t realize is that it’s the same brewers, making the same recipes,” noting also that the unpopular Goose/AB deal had some pretty serious benefits. “We brew [Bourbon County Stout] every week. Now, we’re nonstop BCS. Before, we were nonstop 312.”