Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Das Beer

Responding to my little foray into Wagner criticism, Swifty asks:

Didn't there used to be a local beer in NYC called Rheingold?

Sure did. And apparently it gets a footnote in the long (and cluttered) history of marketing hype; Rod Taylor has the story at a marketing website. I remember my boss on the sports desk saying that a certain creature was "as ugly as last year's Miss Rheingold;" never knew ffor sure whether that was a slur on the beauty queen or the girl.

I was mostly too young to drink the stuff; what I mostly remember about Rheingold beer is one of those jingles that become a mind virus and stick with you --in this case, something like 60 years and counting:
:My beer is Rheingold, the dry beer,
Think of Rheingold whenever you buy beer.
It's not bitter, not sweet; it's a dry flavor treat,
Won't you buy extra dry Rheingold beer?
Oddly enough, I can't find a full-dress representation on the web. We'll have to settle for this:

1 comment:

New York Crank said...

There was also a "Miss Rheingold" chosen annually. Often she was not especially beautiful (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Miss_Rheingold_-_Pat.jpg_

This lack of traffic-stopping drop dead gorgeousness made her a competitor in Rheingold's local New York market for Miss Subways, another often-less-than-beautiful beauty. (http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2007/12/29/nyregion/thecity/subwaysslide02.jpg)

Miss Rheingold was also an inspiration for the New Yorker cartoon headlined, "I wonder whatever happened to the OLD Miss Rheingold?"

Advertising sages of my wasted youth said the initial demise of Rheingold was caused not by the choice of beauty queens but by the advertising claim that it was the "dry beer." Who the hell wants to wet his whistle with a dry anything?

In time, Rheingold's lunch was eaten by Schaeffer beer, which stole away the bulk of the heavy local beer drinkers by announcing it was "the one beer to have when you're having more than one."

Then Schaeffer got killed off by the big monopoly beers—Bud, Schlitz, Coors, Miller. And now micro-rews are drinking Budweiser's lunch.

Come to think of it, what ever did become of the old Miss Rheingolds?

Yours crankily,
The New York Crank