News Blog / Monthly Archives: July 2017

Nothing Says Texas Football Like Corona?

As a culture, we’ve become fairly used to #branding invading every dimension of our lives, but sometimes it really starts to feel like a stretch. July’s most egregious offense in this category has to go to the recently announced partnership between Corona and the University of Texas.

Yes, that’s right. Corona is now the official beer of the Texas Longhorns.

But wait, it gets better. The ad campaign’s slogan? “Horns up, Limes in!”


The internet obviously had a field day.

Screen Shot 2017-07-23 at 8.50.50 PM

In exchange for access to UT’s trademarks, TV channel, massive alumni network and more, the university gets a “responsible drinking campaign” and a Corona Beach House installed near the stadium. The house is described as an “activation experience…including fun photo opportunities with Corona’s iconic giant Adirondack chair.”

A giant Adirondack chair! That’s definitely what UT football fans were missing.

In any case, as the first partnership between an imported beer and a university, it’ll be interesting to see if this starts a trend. Who might pair up next? The possibilities are endless.

SOURCES: Sports Illustrated; Constellation Brands Press Release.

LaBarba Clients Named To Best of Lakewood List

We’re so proud that seven LaBarba clients were named to the Lakewood Advocate’s “Best of 2017” list, which appears in the magazine’s August issue! Over the past three months, Advocate readers have been voting on their favorite local spots across a variety of categories – it’s great to see that many of our own favorites are so loved by the community!

The honorees are:

Lakewood Growler, 3rd place, Best Craft Beer
Craft Beer Cellar, Runner-up, Best Craft Beer
Jimmy’s Food Store, Winner, Best Lunch Spot
Terilli’s, Winner, Best Greenville Ave Staple
Blue Goose Cantina, 3rd place, Best Greenville Ave Staple
Smoky Rose, 3rd place, Best Neighborhood Opening
Liberty Burger, Runner-up, Best Lunch Spot

Screen Shot 2017-07-22 at 2.52.00 PM

Congratulations to all these great clients!

Do you want to spend more time winning awards and less time filing permitting paperwork with the TABC? We can help – call us and join the Labarba family of satisfied businesses today!

SOURCE: Lakewood Advocate.

Industry News: Independent Craft Brewer Seal

About three weeks ago, the Brewer’s Association (BA) announced some big news:

Screen Shot 2017-07-19 at 1.29.31 PM

As of yesterday, 25% of eligible breweries had adopted the new seal, equaling about 1,250 breweries. Those numbers are expected to continue to rise.

So, what exactly is this?

Essentially, think of it like the copyright, recycling, or trademark symbols. It’s designed to be a clear, standardized visual cue that will allow consumers to quickly identify craft beers while they’re shopping. Eligible breweries can place the seal on both packaging and tap handles. There are around 5,300 independent craft breweries that meet the BA standards for the new icon.

Why the push for a distinguishing label now?

There’s been a great deal of concern in the independent brewing community over the fact that so many small craft breweries are being bought by major brewing conglomerates like AB InBev. This acquisition tactic appears to be a cornerstone of InBev’s strategy to combat the growing market share of the craft beer industry. InBev currently holds around 28% market share globally.

InBev, which most people associate with global brands including Budweiser, Corona, and Stella Artois, has slowly been acquiring smaller brands that consumers often assume are still craft beers. Examples include Breckenridge Brewery and Houston’s Karbach Brewing Company, both of which were acquired in 2016.

BA hopes that the new label will provide a visual reminder of the fight to maintain the integrity of the craft beer community and will make it easier for craft beer lovers to support genuinely independent breweries.

The goal is that whenever you see this:

BA full craft beer seal

You’ll know exactly what you’re getting!

We’ll be interested to see if this continues to gain traction – keep an eye on our blog for updates.

SOURCE: GoMN, Brewer’s Association.

The Continuing Saga of TABC Mismanagement

If one thing has been made clear this year, it’s that the TABC is a bit of a mess at the moment. Way back in March, the Texas Tribune did some great reporting that revealed a number of problems to the public, such as lavish spending on out-of-state conferences by upper management.

Graphic created by TABC employees that landed the agency in hot water over out-of-state conferences (via Texas Tribune).

The TABC was also alleged to have tried to put Houston-based Spec’s, the state’s largest liquor retailer, out of business. A single minor infraction was inflated into a three-year investigation that sought to cancel permits for all 164 Spec’s stores or fine the company more than $700 million. After being hauled in front of the state legislature to account for this and other charges, heads started to roll.

As of mid-July, seven top TABC officials have departed, including: Executive Director Sherry Cook, Commissioner Steven Weinberg, General Counsel Emily Helm, Chief of Enforcement Earl Pearson, Head of Internal Affairs Andy Peña, and Licensing Director Amy Harrison. The seventh person to leave was Acting Executive Director Ed Swedberg, who had only occupied the post for a few weeks. He turned in his resignation after refusing to take part in firing Harrison.

The TABC commissioners have now selected a new executive director, Adrian Bentley Nettles, to head the agency. Nettles is a decorated military officer who has a law practice in Bryan. All of us in the industry certainly wish him the best of luck getting the TABC turned around!

SOURCE: Dallas News, Texas Tribune 1, 2, 3.

PSA: Postmates Now Delivers Beer

Just popping in to inform Dallasites that they can now get beer delivered via Postmates!

SEATTLE, WA - NOVEMBER 02: <> on November 2, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Suzi Pratt/Getty Images for Starbucks)

The app plans to offer a wide selection of beers, including Texas favorites like Shiner and Saint Arnold, and will deliver straight to your door in under half an hour. Prices are slightly higher than what you’d pay if you went to the store yourself, but hey, what’s a few bucks more when you get to stay in your pajamas?

If it’s wine, spirits, or mixers you’re after, though, you’ll have to use a different service. Check out apps like LASH Delivery, Minibar, or Drizly (not available in all zip codes).

We’d say let’s hear three cheers for this news, but clearly we’re all too lazy for that. Happy drinking!

SOURCE: Eater Dallas.

LaBarba Permit Service: Cutting Red Tape Since 1965℠