A BEER called Madri has become one of Britain’s best-selling lager brands after being promoted as ‘The Soul of Madrid’ – but it has emerged that it might be better dubbed ‘The Taste of Tadcaster.’

Drinkers have downed £430 million-worth of Madri since it was launched in 2020, making it the UK hospitality sector’s most successful ever new product launch.

A clever marketing campaign might leave customers thinking it was brewed in Spain.

A promotional video for 'Madrid's modern lager' shows a customer buying a Madri on a train before walking through a door into 'Restaurante El Castizo' and then through another door below the sign 'Salud! Que chulo! Madrid' (Health! Cool! Madrid) into an arena.

The man featured on the bottle is  a ‘Chulapo’, 'who were part of Madrid’s society in the 19th century' and 'originated from a sense of pride for their neighbourhood where they were born and raised, famous for their vibrant and elaborate style of dress.'

Chulapos are said by the manufacturer to 'represent the people of modern Madrid, full of life and energy! It’s this progressive spirit of modern Madrid that inspired us to make Madri Excepcional.'

But the ad does carry the message 'Brewed in the UK' in small print.

And the beer is in fact brewed at Molson Coors’ breweries in the UK, including the Tower Brewery in Tadcaster - one of three breweries in the town, which is situated half-way between York and Leeds.

Karen Albert, brand director for Premium Beers, Western Europe, at Molson Coors Beverage Company, said Madrí Excepcional was a collaboration between Carlos Garcia, the founder of La Sagra – one of Spain’s leading artisanal brewers, based near Madrid – and Molson Coors’ talented master brewers in the UK, including its 'great team' at its brewery in Tadcaster.

Pete Brown, author of Beer By Design: The Art Of Good Beer Branding, claimed in the Sunday Times that Madri was a 'marketing masterclass.' 

Mr Brown said La Sagra was based in Toledo, 45 miles south of Madrid, and had been bought by Molson Coors in 2017.

He said the beer was served in 'elegant glassware' which was dished out to pubs who agreed to 'give Madri a go.' When people first bought Madri, they hadn't been able to enjoy a foreign holiday for two years, and they 'bought escapism' and settled for The Soul of Madrid.'

Karen Albert said Madri was the UK hospitality sector’s most successful ever new product launch, delivering the highest sales value of any alcohol brand in its first year.

“Our lager is a unique beer, brewed to meet growing demand for world lagers, a beer category that has increased in value by almost a half (46.4%) over the past twelve months," she said.

"It brings together the best of Britain’s brewing heritage, embodied by towns like Tadcaster, and the Soul of Madrid to create a unique modern-style European lager for British drinkers."

She said brewing Madrí Excepcional in the UK dramatically reduced the miles it had to travel to venues and retailers.

"It also means that every pint is brewed using the 100 per cent renewable electricity that powers our entire network of British breweries," she added.