Mexican beer standoff: Anheuser-Busch hopes Estrella Jalisco can take down Corona

Readers: You may not always drink beer, but when you do, Anheuser-Busch hopes you drink Estrella Jalisco.

The Mexican beer battle is moving north of the border as brewing behemoth Anheuser-Busch InBev (AB InBev) is bringing the 106-year-old Guadalajara pilsner, Estrella Jalisco, to the U.S. market.

As American beer drinkers are able to enjoy their southern neighbor’s sudsy offerings on tap at their local watering holes or at home more easily, the decision to bring the brand to the U.S. is a move intended to compete against popular Mexican beers like Corona, Dos Equis and Tecate.

Experts in the industry also point to the U.S.’s growing Hispanic community – as well as other Americans bored with domestic light beers – as prime targets for Estrella Jalisco.

"There is a growing consumer demand and preference for Mexican beers from U.S. beer drinkers," Jorge Inda Meza, the Anheuser-Busch brand director for the Western U.S., told Fox News Latino "We believe importing Estrella Jalisco with more than 100 years of proud Mexican brewing traditions will help satisfy this consumer demand."

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In a bit of “Hispandering,” the release of the beer in the U.S. will be paired alongside an integrated marketing campaign – "This is Mexicanidad" – which aims to bring Mexican traditions to life by celebrating the customs of the Jalisco region.

The Spanish-language campaign will also feature ads on TV, online and in part along with a series of cultural events including concerts throughout the country.

"Through our 'This is Mexicanidad' marketing campaign, we are aiming to bring Mexican traditions to life by celebrating the rich traditions that come from the Jalisco region," Inda Meza said. "From mariachis to the food and arts that come from Guadalajara, Jalisco – we hope to evoke those rich traditions with consumers."

The 4.5 percent alcohol by volume brew will be available in California, New Mexico, New York, Texas and several other states by the end of this March, and, if drinkers want to really enjoy the true experience of the beer, Anheuser-Busch suggests drinking it from a wide-top pilsner glass.

"Estrella Jalisco is a refreshing, light-flavored pilsner beer with a distinctive taste," Inda Meza said. "[It] is bright, smooth and full-flavored with a crisp finish."

The move to bring Estrella Jalisco to the U.S. is the result of a complicated deal that Anheuser-Busch struck a few years ago with rival Constellation Brands, in which AB InBev was made to sell some U.S. assets to Constellation Brands, including Mexican beers Corona and Modelo Especial. 

Those brands had previously been distributed here under a joint venture between AB InBev and Constellation. With Estrella Jalisco, Anheuser-Busch jumps back into the Mexican beer market.

Rebekah Sager is a writer and editor for She can be reached at Follow her on Twitter @rebekah_sager.


Follow Andrew O'Reilly on Twitter @aoreilly84.

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