Sightlines — Oskar Blues to bring Cigar City to Colorado

Michael Kiser

THE GIST
Florida’s Cigar City, who recently received investment from Fireman Capital Holdings as part of an Oskar Blues deal, will be tapping its beers in Colorado for the first time at sister company Oskar Blues’ Tasty Weasel Taproom in Longmont, CO. The tapping will take place on Thursday July 21st and will feature a new Cigar City beer being tapped every hour, starting with Jai Alai IPA.

WHY IT MATTERS
As craft consumers have long demanded transparency of ownership from larger acquisitions, this tap takeover fully demonstrates the advantages the new partnership with Oskar Blues will generate through the investment from Fireman Capital, and the clear way in which they intend to make their relations known to drinkers. 

This may be a precursor to full distribution in the state for Oskar Blue's acquired brands. With a population that can be fiercely loyal to the local market, breaking into Colorado can be difficult. By aligning themselves closely with their partner brewery from the start, Cigar City may well be able to use that existing loyalty as leverage in the marketplace, considering both consumer sentiments and distribution weight. We’re seeing a number of breweries unite through private equity, Southern Tier and Victory being another prime example. If these breweries see success through these strategic partnerships, will the gradual consolidation of the craft beer industry start to increase in pace?

There’s been no announcement on when Cigar City will officially begin distributing its beers in Colorado, but the Tasty Weasel sounds like a good place to be on July 21st. 

— Matthew Curtis