Controversial ‘KKK’ Beer Hits Shelves in the Hudson Valley
A beer, wrapped to look like a Klu Klux Klan member's hood is now available in our area.
The beer is called Yellow Belly and is a collaboration between Omnipollo brewing in Sweden and Buxton Brewery in the UK. The peanut butter biscuit stout comes wrapped in white paper with two black dots to make the bottle look like a KKK member.
According to Omnipollo brewing, the beer is not supposed to glorify racism. In fact, the objective is to do the exact opposite. By calling the beer "Yellow Belly" the brewery says that they are referring to the Klan as being without "courage, fortitude or nerve, a coward." They go on to explain on their website,
To us, one of the most cowardly deeds is to act anonymously, hiding behind a group. A signifying trait of institutionalised racism.
This beer is brewed to celebrate all things new, open minded and progressive. A peanut butter biscuit stout with no biscuits, butter or nuts. Taste, enjoy, and don’t be prejudiced. Brewed with aromas.
The beer itself gets rave reviews from craft beer websites, such as BeerAdvocate, who's users rate the beer as "outstanding" with a 4.38 out of 5. Reviewers, however, don't all agree with the effectiveness of Yellow Belly's packaging. The beer has received much criticism in the UK, where it has been available for a while. Some argue that while the messaging of the beer may be positive, it's not very clear to those who are buying it. Without knowing the hidden meaning, many may purchase the beer thinking that they're supporting racism.
Yellow Belly is now available in limited quantities at several Hudson Valley craft beer retailers. The question remains, will customers get the message behind the white sheet?
Personally, I'm a huge craft beer fan and would love to try this unique style. But I most likely will not be picking up a bottle of Yellow Belly. Regardless of the intent, buying a beer that looks like a KKK member isn't something I feel comfortable doing.