Attention, hipsters. Pabst Brewing Company — and its signature Pabst Blue Ribbon, the ironic, iconic favorite of the young and the cool — has sold to a Russian beverage firm after a century and a half of American ownership, an investing firm announced Thursday. Oasis Beverages, the largest independent brewer in Russia, bought Pabst, which also produces Colt .45, Old Milwaukee and Lone Star beers, according to a statement by the American investment firmTSG Consumer Partners, which will hold a minority stake.
Pabst, which is based in Milwaukee, also makes National Bohemian, a.k.a. Natty Boh. Colt .45 was original owned by National Bohemian as well. National Premium, another brand that used to be owned by Natty Boh back in the day, is being made by an independent local brewer in Maryland now.
Natty Boh is not brewed in Baltimore or in Maryland anymore, yet local publications still put it in the best local beer category in their voting for best local beers and it often wins, largely because Baltimore denizens, like many people nationally, have low standards and expectations for their beer quality. There are much better local Baltimore and Maryland craft beers that people should give a try if they haven’t already.
Even Governor Martin O’Malley made a bet with the governor of California before the 2012 Super Bowl that included Natty Boh beer until the Maryland Brewers Association busted his chops on it and he deleted the tweet and changed the bet to some actual local beer.
I doubt this move will have an impact on most people who drink Natty Boh, honestly, and to be nice I won’t go much further into detail on that other than saying almost 90% of Natty Boh sales are in the Baltimore area.
No word if the slogan will be changed from “From the Land of Pleasant Living” to something more in line with Vladimir Putin’s Russia.