Up until the 1990’s it was made under contract by Miller brewing. Then for a while it was made in Canada.
I haven’t seen it anywhere in the U.S. for well over a decade. Do they still make it in Canada?
In fact, the last time I even saw it in Europe was in northern Italy in 2012 (been all over the continent over the last 10 years but haven’t been to Germany since the 1980’s). It used to be all over the place.
Is there anyplace in the U.S. I can get it? And yes, I even checked the specialty liquor stores and did not find it.
Yeah, this is weird. It’s ping-ponging in my brain that I’ve seen it within the last couple of years, like imported from Germany (or I guess Canada), but it’s possible that I’m just thinking of seeing it when I was in Budapest last year. All my Google searches seem to indicate that it’s certainly not available anywhere in the Chicago area, at least.
The beerstore.ca is showing it up in Canada for just over CAD$2/can, so presumably it is still brewed there (or at least imported there, I suppose). I’ll have to keep an eye out. I could almost swear I’ve seen that Bavarian blue label somewhere recently.
It doesn’t seem to be available in the US anymore, and even in Canada, it was a good beer to bring to house parties because almost certainly nobody else would bring any, minimizing late-party beer thefts.
As for the question of Canuckistan Lowenbrau being the same as the US-brewed beer you remember or anywhere near a German brew, I’d say don’t bother unless you really, really like the label.
Seconding hogarth’s comment, beer in Canada has always been a monopolistic trust with price fixing and complicated and incestuous government ties. So very expensive.
Lowenbrau is still a thing in Germany - they have a large beer hall at Oktoberfest. Not sure what the relationship between the German Lowenbrau and the ones that have been available in the US over the years.
Back in the day (i.e., in the 1970s and 1980s, before the microbrewery explosion and craft beers), Michelob was positioned as one of the better / more premium beers with wide distribution in the U.S. Here’s an early 1970s Michelob ad, with one of the characters saying, “Hey, what’s the special occasion?”
That niche has been completely taken over by the smaller breweries, and the “base” Michelob brand doesn’t have much of a reason for being anymore. Meanwhile, they’ve carved out that “very low carb” niche for Michelob Ultra, which is likely the only thing that’s keeping the brand name alive, at all.
About 15 years ago I bought a six-pack of special Oktoberfest-style Lowenbrau in Florida. As far as I can recall, it actually came from Germany. (I was aware of the US-brewed Lowenbrau of earlier decades.) I don’t think I’ve seen it since.
Probably much closer to American beers, it sounds like. I probably drank it a few times in the 1980s, but my beer palate wasn’t terribly sophisticated back then (and I wouldn’t have known what an actual German beer would have tasted like at that time, anyway). From the Wikipedia entry on Lowenbrau:
It sounds like Labatt’s is now brewing the Canadian Lowenbrau; if one actually finds Lowenbrau in a US store now, it’s not clear to me if it’d be the German version, or the Canadian one.