‘Everyone wins’ in Lyft, local brewery partnership

By Miranda Manier

Patrons at select bars across Chicago are now able to wave down a bartender, order a Five Star Lager at the end of their night and make their journey home safely because of their purchase.

The Five Star Lager is the product of a collaboration between local brewery Baderbrau, 2515 S. Wabash Ave., and rideshare company Lyft. Each individual craft beer can of Five Star Lager, which is named after Lyft’s rating system, features a unique promo code for the rideshare app that is valid for up to 60 percent off one ride, up to a $5 discount. The code is applicable for all Lyft accounts, said Rob Sama, founder and owner of Baderbrau, unlike other promotional codes that are only available for first-time Lyft riders.

Everyone wins with the initiative, according to Sama.

“We decided to partner with Baderbrau for the Five Star Lager launch to encourage more Chicagoans to travel responsibly when they’re out on the town,” Lyft’s Midwest General Manager David Katcher said in a Jan. 10 press release. “We believe the combination of Baderbrau’s beer and the offer for a safe ride home will be very popular with our Chicago riders.”

Currently, Five Star Lager will only be available at bars around Chicago, according to Sama, and Lyft has so far only committed to 1,000 cases of beer to be released to bars around the city before evaluating whether to continue the  beer’s production. 

The Five Star Lager is a Munich-style helles, a traditional German pale lager, according to Sama, who said the beer is light and has a biscuit, toasty flavor.

The flavor of the beer in addition to the discount benefits could be appealing to drinking-age college students, according to Connor Piper, a senior English and creative writing major who also works as a bartender in Wrigleyville, as both craft beers and lighter beers are favorites of the demographic.

Piper found the partnership between Baderbrau and Lyft unexpected but thought it made sense for college students in Chicago who may want to avoid taking the train late at night. 

“Being intoxicated when you’re out can be dangerous,” Piper said. “This could be a way to get around that. It’s a safer alternative.” 

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