A German firm has been granted the right to brew beer under the name F—cking Hell. While in English the term is an expletive, in German it refers to a light ale (known as Hell in southern Germany and Austria) from the village of Fucking in Austria. The permission, granted by the European Union’s trademarks authority, extends into branded clothing. The EU office said that “F–cking Hell” was an “an interjection used to express a deprecation, but it does not indicate against whom the deprecation is directed. Nor can it be considered as reprehensible to use existing place names in a targeted manner (as a reference to the place), merely because this may have an ambiguous meaning in other languages.” There might be a long wait, however, for the brew with the naughty name. Fucking doesn’t have a brewery and the town’s mayor isn’t aware of any plans to build one.
Looking for more?
Get the best of Maclean's sent straight to your inbox. Sign up for news, commentary and analysis.