Massachusetts Mayor Swears Off Sam Adams Beer After Brewer Praises Trump Tax Cuts

August 15, 2018, 1:59 PM UTC

The mayor of a prominent Boston suburb says he will boycott the city’s most famous beer after the co-founder of Samuel Adams creator Boston Beer Co. praised President Donald Trump’s tax plan.

Somerville Mayor Joseph Curtatone made the declaration via Twitter Sunday, after learning that Jim Koch, chairman of Boston Beer and whose grandfather created the recipe for Samuel Adams Boston Lager, had joined other business leaders for a dinner with Trump on August 7. At that meal, Koch expressed appreciation for the tax cuts that would help his business, according to a White House transcript.

“American brewers make the best beer in the world,” Koch said. “And the tax reform was a very big deal for all of us, because 85% of the beer made in the United States is owned by foreign companies. I mean, Americans—I’m the largest American-owned brewery at 2% market share. We were paying 38% taxes…and competing against people who were paying 20. And now we have a level playing field.”

Curtatone blasted Koch on social media, citing Trump’s immigration policy.

Curtatone’s boycott likely won’t have a big impact on Samuel Adams beers. The brewer is credited with being one of the driving forces in kicking off the craft beer movement in America, with offerings ranging from its ubiquitous Samuel Adams Boston Lager to the $200 a bottle Utopias. It has struggled in recent years as the number of craft competitors have increased, but diversification and recent executive hires have resulted in improved revenues.