Mexican brewery “Minerva” has released (and sold out!) the first 500 cases of two new beer products exclusively targeted to the LGBT community.
Beer is the number one alcoholic beverage in México. 95% of the beer market is controlled by its two largest players: The Modelo Group and the Cuauhtemoc Moctezuma breweries.
To compete with these giants, smaller breweries such as Minerva have started to target their products, and produce specialized beer.
Jalisco based Minerva is producing its second lot of Salamandra and Purple Hand, their “Artisan Honey-Ales” brewed with 100% organic honey and malt, a mix that according to Darío Rodríguez Wyler infuses the beer with a citrus flavor that appeals to the taste of the LGBT ( Lesbian Gay Bi, Trans) community.
“We’ve received alot of criticism about whether we were excluding heterosexuals, and yes, it is a product directed exclusively to the LGBT community,” said Rodríguez. It’s been a great challenge, they tell us we are very brave for developing in México the first drink directed exclusive for such an interesting and badly tended to community.”
Both beers have been a success, completely selling out their first lot of 500 cases in a week.
“It is very interesting that an entrepreneur has dared to release a product like this; and that he has the vision to release it for a specific market like the gay market, seems even more interesting to me. It shouldn’t be necessary to have a gay specific product, but in a society like the Mexican, where there’s such a resistance to get involved in LGBT affairs, it is a very commendable initiative.” Said a local LGBT bar owner.
The name “Purple Hand” is a reference and homage of sorts to the night of Halloween, 1969, when sixty members of the Gay Liberation Front and the Society for Individual Rights protested in front of the San Francisco’s Examiner in response to a series of news articles disparaging LGBT people in San Francisco’s gay bars and clubs. The peaceful protest against the “homophobic editorial policies” of the Examiner turned tumultuous when Examiner employees doused the crowd with printers ink. The protestors used the ink to stamp purple hand prints throughout downtown San Francisco, in what became one of the most visible demonstrations of gay power.
Minerva has received offers by the US, Argentina, Ecuador Chile, Colombia and Japan, interested in importing the beer. The brewery however, wants to supply the local demand before exporting their “LGBT Line” which would also include a red and pink wines.
This is not the first time that Minerva releases a product with a controversial target audience. In 2007 the brewery released “Malverde,” a light Pilsener inspired by the patron saint of Narcos, Robin Hood type Jesús Malverde.
Also Mexican “Revolución Brewery,” has several revolutionary-inspired beers, such as the “Maquiavelo” English Brown Ale, the “Zapata” Black Lager, the Pilsener “Ché Guevara,” and the Argentine Pilsener inspired by soccer revolutionary Diego Maradona “10 Maradó.”
Since 2006, Rodrigo Contreras, from Guadalajara, Mexico has embark on a crusade to produce and export a real and bottled in México Duff beer, identical to Homer Simpson’s drink of choice. Contreras designed the bottle to be identical to the one portrayed on The Simpsons. The bottle can be seen at his website, and is currently available at a few bars; legal issues over the trademark prevent him from exporting it, as Matt Groening, The Simpsons creator, refuses to release the brand, citing it would encourage kids to drink.