was started in 1995 by Keith Villa, PhD, brewmaster, and Jim Sabia, marketer, as a craft-beer operating unit of the Coors Brewing Company (now called MillerCoors), headquartered at the Sandlot Brewery at Coors Field in Denver, Colorado (later renamed the Blue Moon Brewing Company at the Sandlot). See coors brewing company. The name stems from the vision that unique, great- tasting beers come into existence only once in a blue moon. All products were developed and tested at the Sandlot Brewery.

Originally, four products were offered including Belgian White, Nut Brown, Honey Blonde, and a seasonal autumn ale called Pumpkin Ale. Over the years, the multiple offerings were discontinued in order to concentrate on the company’s biggest seller, Blue Moon Belgian White, also simply referred to as “Blue Moon.” This is a version of the Belgian witbier style, packaged, unfiltered, and flavored with orange peel and coriander. See white beer. Through national distribution, a low-key marketing effort and consumer self-discovery, by 2009 Blue Moon Belgian White grew to become the single largest craft or pseudo-craft brand in the United States. Blue Moon also helped to popularize the Belgian White style of ale and to introduce American consumers to Belgian styles of beer.

Blue Moon was brewed in Utica, New York, from 1995 to 1997. Production moved to Cincinnati, Ohio, from 1997 to 1999, then to Memphis, Tennessee, from 1999-2001 and, from 2003-2008, to both Montreal, Canada, and Golden, Colorado. In 2008 production was moved to Eden, North Carolina, and Golden, Colorado.

In addition to Blue Moon Belgian White, the company also sells seasonal beers and limited release offerings, such as Grand Cru. Blue Moon remains a wholly owned subsidiary of MillerCoors.

See also craft brewing.