- Associated Press - Wednesday, July 20, 2016

LA CROSSE, Wis. (AP) - Old Style beer is returning to its hometown of La Crosse, where it will be brewed again and roll out its first new blend in 15 years.

Pabst Brewing Co., which owns the Old Style brand, will unveil a new label as it introduces a new blend, Old Style Oktoberfest, on Thursday, the La Crosse Tribune (https://bit.ly/2abZOcw ) reported. The classic Märzen-style brew will be produced at City Brewery in La Crosse.

“The Midwest is and always will be the true home of Old Style,” said Dan McHugh, Pabst’s chief marketing officer. “Old Style’s fans are a loyal group and continue to be a large part of the brand’s legacy and what makes it such a staple.”

City Brewing Co. brewmaster Randy Hughes said the company won’t add to its 500-employee payroll for the Old Style production in La Crosse.

“It’s the first product out of La Crosse with the Heileman shield and name since mid-1999. That for me is enough to celebrate,” said Hughes, who began working at Heileman in 1978.

The company also has plants in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, and Memphis, Tennessee.

“It’s a small step in us hopefully doing more production for Pabst in the future,” Hughes said.

Old Style was first made as a premium beer at G. Heileman Brewing Co. in La Crosse in 1902. Heileman was the city’s major brewer from 1858 until the mid-1990s and is the predecessor of City Brewery.

Old Style will also be the official beer sponsor for this year’s local Oktoberfest celebration. Old Style, which was Heileman’s No. 1 beer for nearly a century, helped start Oktoberfest USA in La Crosse nearly 60 years ago.

“It means a great deal, with the long history of Old Style and Heileman and getting back to its roots,” said James Brennan, an Oktoberfest board member and member of the festival’s beer committee. “It’s a grand re-entrance, and a large sponsor helps a lot.”

There will be a brief ceremony Thursday morning as the first case of Old Style Oktoberfest rolls off the City Brewery production line. It’ll be delivered via carriage to Mayor Tim Kabat’s office.

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Information from: La Crosse Tribune, https://www.lacrossetribune.com

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