WINSTON-SALEM, North Carolina— Winston-Salem’s Foothills Brewing is relaunching the iconic Carolina Blonde Ale in time for this year’s 30th annual Carolina Renaissance Festival in Huntersville, NC.
In a time before the craft beer revolution took flight in North Carolina, Carolina Blonde was many people’s first exposure to small-batch beer. Originally created in Mooresville, NC in 1997 by the Carolina Beer & Beverage Company, Carolina Blonde became a popular beer across the region, the largest craft beer brand, and an early example of craft beer in cans.
“Blonde ales have a lot going for them” says Bill Manley, Sales & Marketing Director at Foothills Brewing. “They are light, crisp, and easy to drink, but still have a lot of flavor. They hit a sweet spot that appeals to light beer fans, and craft drinkers alike.”
Foothills Brewing acquired the Carolina Blonde brand in 2011 and produced the beer as a standalone product. Now, Foothills is wrapping Carolina Blonde into its core portfolio. Following its debut at the upcoming Carolina Renaissance Festival, Foothills will launch the beer in its on-site locations in Winston-Salem, and then region-wide in Spring of 2024.
“The Carolina Blonde brand is such a symbol of the region” says Manley. “Born in North Carolina, and featuring the iconic Cape Hatteras lighthouse on the label, it creates an instant connection with our home state. It was one of the first craft beers I ever tasted, and I remember it well. It’s exciting to be able to breathe new life into a North Carolina classic.”
The choice to debut the beer at the Carolina Renaissance Festival is no coincidence. Carolina Blonde was an original beer sponsor of the annual festival, and then Foothills took-over as the primary craft beer partner in 2012.
“We are excited to help kick off the return of Carolina Blonde. The relaunch is a tribute to rich traditions and creative spirits which makes Carolina Blonde a perfect pairing with the arts and entertainment presented at the Carolina Renaissance Festival.” says Matt Siegel, director of marketing and entertainment at the Carolina Renaissance Festival.
“Foothills is thrilled for the opportunity to partner with the Renaissance Festival” says Jamie Bartholomaus, president and brewmaster of Foothills Brewing. “Supporting community events has been part of Foothills’ mission since day one, and the Renaissance Festival is one of the Carolinas’ best events, drawing crowds from all over the region. It’s a great representation of our state.”
The Carolina Renaissance Festival is celebrating its 30th season and runs Saturdays and Sundays from September 30th through November 19th. www.carolina.renfestinfo.com
Proudly brewed in Winston-Salem, North Carolina since 2005, Foothills are the makers of Hoppyum IPA, Hazyum IPA, Happyum Imperial IPA, Jade IPA, Torch Pilsner, People’s Porter, and the award-winning Sexual Chocolate Imperial Stout. In addition to brewing world-class beers, Foothills also serves award-winning food at its downtown brewpub and crafts signature cocktails and coffee drinks using house-roasted, responsibly sourced coffee beans at Footnote Coffee and Cocktails. Visit them in Winston-Salem or find their beers in North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, or anywhere where great beer is sold.
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