If you’re the sort of person who enjoys plopping down on the sofa for long periods of time to watch sports on TV, raise your hand. OK, maybe that’s too much to ask. How about just loud snorting sounds?
Those of you who just snorted know your beer commercials, and probably remember the one in which we are told that during a taste test, the favorite beer in all the land was…Old Milwaukee!
I think you can imagine the average beer-drinking American’s reaction to this news: That’s right, more than 634,000 of them immediately dropped a bowling ball on their foot.
The survey was conducted by Consumer Reports, which generally sticks to rating such things as cars, refrigerators, and lawn-care equipment. In the October issue, for example, Black & Decker earned the highest rating for its combination meat smoker/toupee dryer, the Ham Donaldson.
For the beer report, the magazine enlisted brew masters and brewing students to do the blind tastings.
Tasting beer while you are blind, as you know, is considered the only realistic way to gauge the product, in the sense that 87 percent of beer drinkers end up in that condition just after midnight.
That’s followed by slurring the words “Shhomeone call me a cab,” at which point all six of your drunken friends are required by Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives regulations to say, “You are a cab! Ha-ha-ha!”
The 30-second commercial for Old Milwaukee beer was shown during the World Series, and continues to air during NFL games.
Marketing experts briefly toyed with the idea of using the commercial during NHL games, but correctly surmised that by the start of the game, the average hockey fan has already made his beverage selection (grain alcohol).
As you might imagine, the results of the Consumer Reports study triggered a quiet and subdued celebration at the Old Milwaukee headquarters.
The party seemed to peak after about a week. It only showed signs of winding down when corporate executives could find no more lamp shades to place on their heads, and the Billy Ray Cyrus line-dance audiotape broke.
On a personal note, I have spent the past four years pursuing a theater arts degree. I have conducted a beer-tasting survey with my fellow theater students, and, therefore, feel quite qualified to comment on Old Milwaukee beer.
Based on my own experiences over the last four years, I think I speak for all of us who participated in the survey, and consumed this fine product, when I say, “God, I wish I could remember the name of this damn college. Metro-something-something?”
The scientific study done by Consumer Reports was performed by tasting each beer five times, using samples bought at stores across the country. They assessed 30 beer qualities and defects that were mapped on numerical scales.
Then, and only then, did the study’s highly-professional quality-control masters unscrew the lids from the five-gallon jars of pickled eggs; rack up the pool balls; and let everyone—in formal consumer-study terminology—“have at it.”
It should be noted, however, that Old Milwaukee captured first place only in the “regular and ice beers” category.
For “craft ales”—the microbrews that are sweeping the nation, and causing hundreds of thousands of sophisticated, high-end consumers to forget how to twitter, tweet, and text on their phone gadgets—the number-one product was Samuel Adams Boston Ale.
Samuel Adams was the American Revolutionary patriot who joined Paul Revere in giving a British general what would become known as “the noogie heard ’round the world.” It was so painful, and came as such a surprise, that the general dropped a bowling ball on his foot.
Now, consider the source here, but with its historical and political background, I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if Samuel Adams Boston Ale became the official beer of choice for the Tea Party—even though Old Milwaukee calls itself the Beer Built Right.
Bye for now.