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California markets chosen for launch of two Belgian brews.

A Belgian Abbey beer, first brewed in 1240, and a classic wheat beer, originated in 1445, will be introduced into the U.S. on a limited basis in San Diego and San Francisco this month.

The two beers, Abbey of Leffe and Hoegaarden White, respectively, will be imported by Pierco Sales, according to Ron Fowler, company chairman. Fowler noted that this introduction "is the first step in bringing hand-crafted Belgian beers to select markets throughout the United States."

"Given the growing interest in |connoisseurs' beers' in the U.S., it seemed natural to introduce these fine, distinctive Belgian beers to the American market," Fowler explained. "San Diego and San Francisco were selected for the launch because both are strong markets for both imported beers and the rapidly-growing category of microbreweries." The two brands are both part of Interbrew, Belgium's largest brewing corporation.

"We have many good brands and tested 10 different beers to determine which would have the greatest appeal to American connoisseurs," said Philippe Cabassol, Interbrew America president. "After extensive study and tastings, we decided to bring Abbey of Leffe and Hoegaarden White to American as our introduction of the finest beers of Belgium."

To support the brands during their launch, Interbrew will bring is brewmasters, brand marketing managers, and senior executives to California. Cabassol also reported Interbrew personnel will share some of Belgium's best recipes for cooking with beer.
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Title Annotation:Belgian Abbey
Publication:Modern Brewery Age
Date:Feb 3, 1992
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