Anchor Sold

Written by Sandra Duxbury for The San Francisco Business Times

It’s Anchor’s away in the brewing world, as Fritz Maytag sells the company that helped launch America’s taste for craft beer. Fritz Maytag sold his Anchor Brewing Co., maker of Anchor Steam beer and Junipero Gin, to Griffin Group.

Keith Greggor and Tony Foglio, who helped create Skyy Vodka, lead the Novato-based investment firm. Maytag will remain chairman emeritus of the new business — in part to keep the business in San Francisco, a release said.

Maytag purchased a small San Francisco brewery in 1965 and introduced Anchor Steam beer in 1971. The original brewery itself dates back to 1896, and owing to that history, 72-year-old Maytag has remained committed to keeping the company here.

Greggor and Foglio, a former CEO of Skyy, sold their shares of Skyy to Campari in 2007. In 2009, Griffin invested in BrewDog, one of the U.K.’s largest independent breweries.

Terms of the Anchor Brewing Co. deal were not disclosed.


Sarah Duxbury covers retail, restaurants, hospitality and nonprofits for the San Francisco Business Times.


Well That BITES or Why Mosquitoes Have More Fun

Written by QMI Agency for The Toronto Sun

Bad news for outdoorsy types: mosquitoes like beer as much as you do. This according to an Australian study published on PloS One, the Public Library of Science online. A team of researchers in Australia put volunteers in tents in Burkina Faso in West Africa. The tents used a complex system of tubing to direct the volunteers’ body odour into boxes in such a way that the mosquitoes could choose which scent to go after.

Half the volunteers – all men between 20 and 43 – were given one litre of 3% beer to drink, and the other half were given a litre of water. Then the researchers unleashed the lab-bred mosquitoes. The experiment was conducted four times: before beer, after beer, before water and after water.
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The Professor’s Dream Vacations

It’s the time of year many start thinking “vacation.” Here’s one possibility: if not this year; next.

Every year beer lovers gather for a two day event: Hastings Beer and Music Festival. This fascinating event takes place in Alexandra Park, Hastings. English and visiting music fans delight to the sounds of many acts, including Not Guilty, Pugwash, Joe’s Blues Band, Slam, Keane, Hastings Horns, Blair MacKichan, Status Quo, Lenny Beige and even a family sing-a-long. Here’s a hint to festival organizers: how about some international acts to increase the appeal to visiting tourists like us Yanks? This has been a charity event with much of the funds going to St. Michaels Hospice, so local appeal, musically, is certainly necessary.

Usually held in early July around the 4th. Stick it to our former oppressor: go dressed in your American best!

Beer selection: over 100 different ales, bitters, milds, and stouts. Past tastings: Thwaites Well, Well, Well (Pale), Whites Grumpy Guvnor (malty deep amber bitter), Westerham British Bulldog “BB” (Maris Otter anyone?), Wells and Youngs Eagle IPA, Titanic Longitude (perhaps a Brit take on an American IPA?) and many, many more.

Cost last year 8L in advance, 10 at the door. That’s about $12 and $15. Not bad.