Six things that have consumers buzzing in the world of beer, wine and spirits as we head into the weekend:
1. Bud Light Kicks Off Its NFL Promotions: Football season is here and Bud Light, the official beer sponsor of the NFL, is ready for some football. Bud Light is calling this season the “Year Of The Fan” and promotions include the creation of the Bud Light Fantasy Football League, where codes on each bottle of Bud Light are used to build fantasy rosters. Fans can also expect to see plenty of Bud Light commercials with an average of two Bud Light ads in every NFL broadcast.
2. Actung! Munich Faces Beer Crisis: Forget Greece, Spain or Italy. Germany has another crisis on its hands, this time of the beer variety. As German brewers get ready for Oktoberfest, lack of beer isn't a problem. They just don't have anything to put it in. Unseasonably warm weather led to a spike in beer drinking this summer and now brewers are short on bottlesand kegs. Time to get going on those bottle returns.
3. Ale to the Chief: The White House finally revealed its much anticipated recipe forits home brew. It didn't take long for one of the nation's 2,000-plus home brewers to see a marketing opportunity. Utah-based Wasatch Brewing says it plans to make its own version of the White House brew, which they are calling “El Presidente Honey Ale” in time for Election Day.
Home brewers can also give the recipe a shot thanks to Northern Brewer Homebrew Supply, which is selling White House Beer Recipe Kits for $48.
4. Another Round of Beer and Politics: President Barack Obama's beer choiceshave put beer front-and-center in the political landscape this election season. Beer was again on display at the Democratic National Conventionin Charlotte. Bill Butcher, the owner of Virginia-based Port City Brewing, spoke about life as a small business owner and Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper also addressed the crowd, discussing his experience as one of the founders of the Wynkoop Brewery in Denver.
5. Beer Cocktails Continue to Boom: Beer cocktails are a hot trend in the drink category. Now Heineken USA is rolling Tecate Michelada, a ready-to-drink mix of beer with lime, spices and a chili pepper made in the ”authentic original Mexican recipe.” It will be available in the California, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and Nevada markets. Earlier this year, Heineken USA introduced Indio, a Mexican dark beer brewed and sold in Mexico since 1893.
6. Forget the Box, The Wine is in the Bag: Wine in a box has always been looked down upon, but now fashionistas can keep their wine in a bag — a wine purse to be exact. Vernissage has introduced “Bag-in-Bag,” what they call “world class wine design.” It’s a bag of wine concealed in a luxury handbag, just don’t mind the spigot. Made in Sweden, there are three types of wine available, a Chardonnay, a Cabernet Shiraz, and a Rose. A 1.5-liter bag will retail for $20.
-By Tom Rotunno, CNBC Senior Editor