First introduced in 1994, The Original Honey Brown lager, known for its subtle, sweet taste, became an overnight success in the late 90s. Now, more than a quarter century later, the Genesee Brewery will relaunch the iconic beer, this time under its brewery label: Genesee Specialty.
Genesee has been growing in popularity for several years now, and, with the introduction of a specialty line of beers, has experienced increased demand in the Northeastern U.S. Initially positioned as a premium brand, the Original Honey Brown lager broke every sales projection at the Genesee Brewery in the 90s – growing more than 300% from 1995 to 1996. A strong cult following sustained the brand for decades. With the same winning recipe and a new name, packaging and marketing push, Genesee hopes to recapture the success of this iconic brand in 2020.
“The Original Honey Brown flew off the shelf,” said Inga Grote-Ebbs, Genesee brand director. “Made with a hint of pure Manitoba White Clover honey, its unique and refreshing taste profile piqued consumer interest and won over beer fans when first introduced. At the time, using honey in beer was quite innovative. Now as people continue to seek out flavor and drinkability when choosing their beer, Genesee is relaunching this iconic brand with a fresh look designed to build off the brand’s nostalgia while connecting to a whole new generation of beer drinkers.”
A World Beer Cup award winner, Honey Brown lager is brewed with pure clover honey with no preservative or artificial flavors and has 4.5 percent alcohol-by-volume. It has a golden color and a distinct, subtle sweetness.
The beer is available now in a variety of packaging options.
The History of Honey Brown
Made with water, barley, hops and pure Manitoba White Clover honey, Honey Brown was first introduced in February of 1994.
According to Genesee Brewery historian, Paul Constantine, the inspiration for the beer came from a scouting expedition by some of the Genesee Brewery’s top executives who toured breweries in the Pacific Northwest looking for new ideas. After their return, the team came up with several concepts, the favorite of brewery Chairman Jack Wehle being a lager brewed with honey. Gary Geminn who served as Brewmaster at the time, sought out the best naturally produced honey made from the nectar of Manitoba-grown white clover to create a light and uniform flavor.
“Geminn brewed the beer to have smooth characteristics with a subtle sweetness while maintaining the lightness of a lager,” said Constantine.
The same winning recipe is relaunching this fall in new packaging under the Genesee name.