Big Cock Bock – Hoyne Brewing
The name cheekily refers to the rooster on the label, but the BC Liquor Distribution Board rejected the beer on the grounds that the name wasn’t “family friendly.” The Hoyne clan argued that beer’s not meant for families, but the LDB refused them anyway, forcing Hoyne to drop the cock and go with the neutered “Big Bock.”
Raging Bitch Belgian Style IPA – Flying Dog Brewery
The Maryland brewery took a serious thrashing in the press following the release of their Belgian IPA in 2009, prompting think pieces from all corners of the Internet, even up until last year, with Slate using it as an example of rampant sexism in the craft beer industry. The name is certainly tasteless, but the label, designed by gonzo illustrator Ralph Steadman, is pretty cool.
Sweet Baby Jesus! – DuClaw Brewing
Now here in the godless West of Canada, an alcoholic beverage named after our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ might not raise any concerns. But it was too damn much for Heinen’s, an Ohio grocery chain, which pulled the beer from its shelves earlier this year after numerous customer complaints. The media jumped all over it, which of course raised the profile of the brewery and the beer in magnitudes.
Busterhiman Cherry Ale – Dark Horse Brewing
Look. We’re not easily offended, nor do we find the beer names on this list personally objectionable, but this one treads a little to close to underage diddling for comfort. Dark Horse can argue that virgins come in all ages, which is true, but it’s still gross.
Mouth Raper IPA – Hop Valley Brewing
If true, this is possibly the most blockheaded name for a beer possible. We say “if true,” because the beer is sold to the public as Mr. IPA, but last year, blogger Jeff Alworth at Beervana received a tip that “MR” actually stands for Mouth Raper. The brewery allegedly changed the name so the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau in the U.S. would accept the beer. Hop Valley denied all this, stating they have a lineup of “Mr.” beers, including Mr. Orange and Mr. Black.
This didn’t stop feminist website Jezebel from pouncing on the story with characteristic outrage. If the story is true, the reaction is understandable, but maybe not completely necessary. Hop Valley is likely referring to the high hop content of the beer, similar to Green Flash’s Palate Wrecker. Then again, it’s still a very stupid name.
Fucking Hell – Fucking Hell
It’s not exactly what you think. The beer is named after the Australian town of Fucking, and “hell” means “light” in German. It’s also a very popular style of lager in Bavaria. The problem is that the beer’s not even brewed in Fucking, or in Austria – it’s German. The name is clearly employed by the company’s owners as a pun for marketing purposes, offending legions of Austrians and bad-pun-haters in the process.
Velvet Merkin – Firestone Walker Brewing
For about two years, Firestone Walker got away with the name because, probably just like you, nobody knew what a merkin was. Until they found out it’s a pubic wig, originally worn by prostitutes in the Middle Ages to cover up signs of sexually transmitted diseases. They changed the name to Velvet Merlin once they started bottling the beer in 2010.