It looks like everyone's getting into barbeque these days. Budweiser, the self proclaimed "King of Beers" just announced that they're entering the barbecue sauce business. It's an interesting concept. A lot of cooks use whiskey or bourban in their sauces, but I haven't heard of any using beer. Good luck to them.
King of Beers now wants to reign over the barbecue
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
Anheuser-Busch is kicking up the grilling season with a new line of Budweiser sauces, including a baste, two barbecue sauces and a wing sauce, available in July.
Is this sauce for you?
The Budweiser name will soon be on a line of non-alcoholic barbecue sauces that rolls out in July. Anheuser-Busch Cos. hopes the sauces will strengthen the link between Budweiser and a favorite American cooking style, while heightening brand loyalty during the key beer-selling season.
Under a licensing deal announced Monday, Vita Food Products Inc. of Chicago will make and distribute two different barbecue sauces, along with another sauce for chicken wings and a basting sauce.
These Budweiser-branded sauces are a natural fit because barbecues and picnics already are key beer-drinking occasions, said Randall Blackford, director of Budweiser marketing at A-B's domestic brewing subsidiary.
"Now that we have (the sauces), it's kind of like a flash of the blindingly obvious," he said.
With net sales of $47 million last year, Vita is a small food manufacturer that is best known for seafood products, such as salmon spreads and packaged herring. But the company also makes a wide range of barbecue sauces, marinades, condiments and beverage mixes under brand names Oak Hill Farms, Virginia Brand and Scorned Woman.
Though Vita is producing the sauces, the recipes were cooked up by Anheuser-Busch. A culinary team at the brewer's upscale Kingsmill Resort in Williamsburg, Va., developed the recipes with the help of A-B brewmasters.
Budweiser is a key ingredient in the sauces, but the production process eliminates the alcohol.
Though beer has long been used in grilling marinades or homemade barbecue sauces, distillers have been the ones branding them in recent years.
Five years ago, H.J. Heinz Co. launched a line of Jack Daniel's sauces, the whiskey made by Louisville, Ky., distiller Brown-Forman Corp. Using the Heinz distribution network, they're widely available in supermarkets.
Vita makes a wide array of products under the Jim Beam brand of bourbon whiskey, which is owned by Deerfield, Ill.-based Fortune Brands Inc. The line even includes a Jim Beam pancake syrup.
Combining Budweiser with a barbecue sauce also plays well with the brewer's ongoing efforts to promote the link between beer and food.
A-B believes the brewing industry hasn't done enough to highlight how well beer goes with certain foods, particularly spicy ones. In contrast, the wine industry has done a good job of pairing wine with food.