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Olympia Is Coming Will It Dent Coors’ Dallas Success?

By D Magazine |

The people at Coors are looking warily over their shoulders. Oly is coming to town.

Coors beer, as any Dallas barfly knows, is everywhere you look. Still, it comes as some surprise to learn that Willow, Inc., the Dallas distributor of Coors, is the largest volume single site beer distributor in the United States and controls a staggering 40 to 45 percent of the Dallas beer market. Sweet success. Not a worry in the world, you’d think. But you have to suspect that the Coors locals are taking more than a passing interest in the fact that a new beer is heading into Dallas, especially when the name of the beer is Olympia.

Until the advent of the “light” (low calorie) beers, Coors’ e-normous marketing success in the West has been dented by only one other brew. That’s right: Olympia, affectionately called “Oly” by its fans. Headquartered in Olympia, Washington, and selectively marketed, Olympia has some of the same “hard-to-get” mystique that Coors has plied so well. It is also light in style and taste in the way that Coors is light (not low cal). And it is no secret, particularly in northern California and the Pacific Northwest, that many Coors drinkers have defected to Olympia. And Dallas is Oly’s next target. The Olympia Brewery won’t offer details, but local sources claim that Olympia Beer will be in Dallas by the end of August.

The question is, what kind of Olympia? Olympia has already begun to distribute their new light beer, Olympia Gold, in the south Texas market, including San Antonio, Corpus Christi, and Houston. But word is that Dallas will be getting the regular, original Olympia. The real Oly. The Oly trademark, on the can, reads “It’s the Water.” But what water? The picture of the waterfall on the can says “Tumwater,” a small town just south of Olympia. But Olympia is also brewed in St. Paul, Minnesota. More to the point, Olympia has recently purchased the Lone Star Beer Brewery in San Antonio and is currently doubling plant capacity so that both Lone Star and Olympia will be brewed there. So, it seems to follow that for Dallas, “It’s the Water” we’ve already tasted in Lone Star. Olympia Longnecks – No Place but Texas . . . ?

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