October 21, 2010 - NBA Development League (D-League) - Maine Red Claws
Portland, Maine - Ed Stebbins, master brewer with Portland, Maine-based Gritty McDuff's, today announced that beginning mid-November, its best-selling Red Claws Ale is expanding to six and 12 packs in grocery stores, convenience and beer stores throughout Maine. It also will continue to be available in 22 oz. bottles and on tap. Red Claws Ale, launched in support of NBA Development team the Maine Red Claws, has enjoyed continuing growth since its December 2009 launch.
The popularity of Gritty's Red Claws Ale has been exceptional from day one," Stebbins noted. "It is a very tasty brew that allows fans to show their support of Maine's successful basketball team, and that has been an unbeatable combination. Red Claws Ale fans asked for additional offerings, so we've responded."
"It's exciting to walk into a store and see Red Claws Ale on the shelf and to see that distinctive tap handle at area bars and restaurants," said Red Claws President and General Manager Jon Jennings. "We knew from the beginning that Gritty's would deliver a quality product, and we were not disappointed. We are looking forward to further expanding the availability of Red Claws Ale with the addition of six and 12 packs."
The new products will require additional packaging design, but the beer's recipe will remain the same. "Red Claws is a winner, and we're not messing with its success," said Stebbins.
The launch of the packaging coincides with the Maine Red Claws first home game on November 19. Red Claws Ale will continue to be the only Maine microbrew product available during games at The Portland Metropolitan Exposition Center (the Portland Expo), the team's home court, and also will be offered on draft at Gritty's three Maine brew pub locations (Portland, Freeport and Lewiston/Auburn), and in select bars and restaurants in Maine.
The introduction last year of Red Claws Ale represented a groundbreaking sponsorship agreement between Gritty's and the NBA. The arrangement authorized Gritty's not only to produce the team's official beer for sale at The Portland Expo, but also to offer it throughout Maine in bars, restaurants, and market retailers. It was a creative move for the NBA that generated coverage from regional and national outlets including CNBC, Yahoo! Sports, New England Cable News and DRAFT magazine.