Saturdays Suds: Baseball & Beer #4 Ballantine Ale

4 08 2012

This is my fourth “Saturday Suds” – where I’ll post a beer that has something to do with baseball (or at least I’ll try to figure out some way to correlate it with baseball).

Brewery:  (Originally) Ballantine Brewery in Newark, NJ

Currently owned and brewed by Pabst Brewing Co.

Beer:  Ballantine Ale

Description:  Interestingly, this is not your typical summer ale like the other “baseball beers” I’ve tried thus far.  It’s still a gold color, but it’s heavier.  It actually seems kind of like a lager more than an ale to my untrained palate.  It’s somewhat bitter and fairly hoppy, but it wasn’t difficult to drink by any means.  This beer isn’t bad, but somehow I wonder if it was better back in its heyday.

Medium:  I tried one at an interleague Reds game at Yankee Stadium a couple of months ago.  They have a retro beer stand in the Great Hall, and I chose the Ballantine over PBR and Schlitz.

How it’s related to baseball:  Aside from the fact that I got it at Yankee Stadium, this one actually has a lot of baseball history to it.  The founder of the Ballantine Brewery (Peter Ballantine) moved his main operations from Albany to Newark in mid 1800’s.  This gave the brewery access to the New York City market and Ballantine became one of the largest breweries in the country.

Eventually, Ballantine enjoyed the peak of its success in the 1940’s and 1950’s, when the beer became the first television sponsor of the Yankees.  At this point, Ballantine Ale became the third best-selling beer – and the best-selling ale – in the U.S.  It was famous for its logo – the three-ring sign, and broadcaster Mel Allen used the phrase “Ballantine Blast” to signify when Yankees players hit home runs.  Ballantine was also a sponsor for the Phillies at Connie Mack Stadium – for a time, the scoreboard in left field was known as the Ballantine Scoreboard.




One response

1 09 2012
Saturdays Suds (Baseball & Beer) #8 – Narragansett Lager « Lifetime Topps project

[…] Braves switched to Ballatine in 1950, but the beer sponsored the Red Sos until the late 1960′s.  At that point, F & M […]

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