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Monday, February 28, 2011

Highland Brewing Co. to Release PSA Pilsner to Support Pints for Prostates Awareness Campaign

ASHEVILLE, N.C. – Highland Brewing Co. is releasing PSA Pilsner to help raise awareness about prostate cancer and generate funds to fight the disease that one in six American men will face.

Highland PSA Pilsner is a limited release lager created by Highland Brewer Joey Justice that will initially be available only on draught. PSA Pilsner will be tapped for the first time on March 11 from 4 to 8 p.m. during a special event at the Highland Brewing Tasting Room, 12 Old Charlotte Highway in Asheville, N.C. The beer will benefit Pints for Prostates, an awareness campaign that reaches men through the universal language of beer. Highland Brewery will donate 50-cents from each pint sold.

The beer takes its name from the PSA (prostate specific antigen) blood test, a critical tool in the early detection of prostate cancer. Highland PSA Pilsner is the latest addition to the Pints for Prostates campaign, which is designed to be a friendly and non-threatening reminder to men to take charge of their health.

“We have been working on developing a new Pilsner and want to get the reaction of our fans to the new beer at our tasting room. We thought this would be a great opportunity to raise awareness about prostate cancer,” said Oscar Wong, Highland Brewing founder and a prostate cancer survivor. “Pints for Prostates is spreading the word across the country and this is a perfect opportunity to bring this important message to Asheville.”

Pints for Prostates will have an information table at the event, along with t-shirts, hats and a raffle for a nine-night trip for two to Prague, Bamberg and Munich for Oktoberfest. The Tim Marsh Collective will provide live music during the release event.

“Pints for Prostates really appreciates the support of Highland Brewing and I am looking forward to tasting PSA Pilsner,” said Rick Lyke, a Charlotte marketing executive and beer writer who founded Pints for Prostates in 2008 after successful prostate cancer surgery. “Few people realize that men are 33 percent more likely to face prostate cancer than women are to develop breast cancer. With early detection and proper treatment, the disease is nearly 100 percent survivable, but last year 32,000 American men died from prostate cancer. Men need to take charge of their health and start having regular prostate health screenings and PSA tests at age 40.”

According to Justice, Highland PSA Pilsner reflects his love for great Pilsner. The recipe combines Best Maltz (Best Pilsen Malt) from Heidelberg, Germany, with Carapils and Vienna Malt from American specialty malt producer Breiss, with the wort nursed through an extended brewing, fermentation and conditioning cycle utilizing the yeast strain that created the Czech Republic’s reputation for producing the world’s greatest Pilsners. Classic Czech Saaz hops provide a modest IBU count and delicate effusive aromatics. This small batch Pilsner finishes clean and crisp, and at 4 percent alcohol by volume, can lay claim to being an honest, distinctly refreshing, and highly quaffable session beer, hand crafted with love of the brewer’s art.

“Prostate cancer is about 30 years behind breast cancer in terms of awareness and social standing. The pink ribbon can be found on everything from cat food to wine, but the blue ribbon for prostate cancer awareness is on very few products as a reminder to men,” Lyke said. “Having Highland PSA Pilsner on the market is a major step forward in raising awareness about prostate cancer. Highland Brewing is really stepping up to the plate to help guys.”

During the last two years more than 100 Pints for Prostates events have been held, organized by volunteers and often hosted on a local level at breweries, restaurants or brewpubs. Those wishing to organize an event can get information by visiting www.pintsforprostates.org.

About Pints for Prostates
Pints for Prostates is a 501(c)3 a campaign that reaches men through the universal language of beer to encourage them to take charge of their health. The group was founded by prostate cancer survivor and beer writer Rick Lyke in 2008. The grassroots effort raises awareness among men of the importance of regular health screenings and PSA testing by making appearances at beer festivals, social networking and pro bono advertising. According to the National Cancer Institute, approximately 218,000 new prostate cancer cases were diagnosed in the U.S. in 2010. More information is available at www.pintsforprostates.org. Pints for Prostates also has a presence on Facebook and Twitter (@pints4prostates).

About Highland Brewing Co.
Highland Brewing Co. rolled out its first beer kegs in December 1994. Built almost entirely of retrofitted dairy equipment, the original brewery in downtown Asheville could produce up to 6,500 barrels of beer per year. In October 2006, the company moved to a larger, more efficient brewery in east Asheville with a 20,000 barrel capacity. Owner/founder Oscar Wong and Vice President/Brewmaster John Lyda have been at the brewery since its inception. What began as a three person operation has grown into a staff of 18. Currently, the Highland brand is sold in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia. More information is available at http://www.highlandbrewing.com/.