Humans give nicknames to everything. We name our sons Robert and then call them Bob. You may say you're going out for a burger, but in reality you order a grass-fed bison burger served on a spent-grain bun with asiago cheese, charred kale, and locally harvested poblano peppers. (Wait, we want that now.) It's in our nature to call things that they aren't "properly" named. Beer is no exception to this rule. Coors Light? How about a silver bullet. A regular Coors? Nope, that's the banquet beer. Here's how Coors, the banquet beer, got its name.
Coors, named after Adolph Coors, was originated in Golden, Colorado. There's still a giant Coors factory in Golden to this day, in fact. Visit Golden and you'll have no difficulty imagining mining being a big industry in the area when Coors was founded. (Oh yeah, that was way back in 1873).
After spending anywhere around 12 hours underground, miners would come back to the surface for a beer and some air, in that order. That's right, the original Coors Golden Lager was flat-out demanded by the miners after work.
The Miller Coors Blog discusses those good-old mining days. Each "back-breaking, life-threatening workday ended with some serious feasting." These feasts, which could readily be called banquets, were often held at mining camps.
Each mining camp that sampled the Coors Golden Lager loved it, and word of its quality quickly spread from camp to camp. The mining boom eventually ended, and prohibition came around.
Fast forward through 17 sober, dry, prohibitory years to get to the true gem of this story. Post-Prohibition, Coors became known as the banquet beer. The name banquet was enacted as a way to toast the beer's original patrons, miners.