Beer is having a big moment, a revolution of sorts. When it comes to grabbing a cold one, more people seem to be bypassing the big dogs and seeking out better-tasting craft brews.
“I think that the brewers are driving each other, and I think the drinkers are driving the brewers,” said Joe Emswiler, who reviews hundreds of craft beers on his website, properhops.com. “Pretty much anything you want to brew right now, the sky’s the limit. People are going to want to try it.
American craft brew sales are up 15 percent over last year’s, according to the Brewers Association’s mid-year report, which was released in July. The organization represents more than 1,400 small and independent U.S. breweries, or around 70 percent of the brewing industry.
Not all suds claiming the â€œcraft beerâ€ label are created equal. While all beer makers say that quality and taste are what matter most, beer lovers consider many other factorsâ€”size of the brewer, corporate ownership, circumstances under which the beer was madeâ€”when evaluating brews. Which beers are considered to be the height of pure unadulterated craft production, and which do beer geeks consider barely a step up from Bud?
Over the course of covering the rapidly expanding craft beer world, itâ€™s become clear that the field hasnâ€™t merely grown more crowded, but far more complicated as well. For many, one of the big attractions to craft beer is that itâ€™s created by brewmasters who are passionate first and foremost about beer, not profits or business plans. Yet over the years, as the number of players have doubled and doubled again, the craft scene has undeniably become big business.
ASHEVILLE â€” Inside unadorned buildings, dark basements and hollow warehouses across this mountain town, the steam rises from shiny pots carrying a sweet smell from a brew that draws thousands.
Not far removed from the copper stills that once kept moonshine flowing in these hills, this new legal brew is transforming the state into a top destination for a fast-growing segment of the beverage market: craft beer.
Made in small batches by independent, local breweries, craft beer from North Carolina is now distributed throughout the region. The stateâ€™s roughly 85 craft brewers are earning national recognition and drawing hordes of enthusiasts, some of whom drive hours and sleep overnight on sidewalks to taste special releases.
MOSCOWâ€”The world’s top brewers once bet big on Russia’s famous love of drinking, pouring hundreds of millions of dollars into new plants and distribution networks as they sought to tap a growing taste for beer in a land where vodka long ruled.
For years the investment paid off. But now the Kremlin’s campaign against alcoholism has sapped the life out of the party as a flood of new regulations and taxes aimed at turning around dismal life expectancy rates for men has made the beer market go flat, brewers say.
It is a deceptive beer, with its golden pour topped by a white head. The aroma is fresh grain and herbal hops. All in all, it looks and smells like a European pilsner.
So it was disorienting when the first flavors of chocolate and coffee were discovered. Not unpleasant, mind you, but I kept going back and forth between the aroma and taste, and once again marveling at the ingenuity of brewers.
FOX, Miller/Coors and InBev all yammering and one suing regarding “truthfulness?” Comedy and irony thy name is MEGA brews and FOX-PGA
What does it really mean to have the â€œworldâ€™s most refreshing can?â€ Well, we are about to find out.
The gauntlet has been set for whether or not a new aluminum innovation from Coors really offers beer drinkers a “smoother, more refreshing pour” from the “world’s most refreshing can.â€
The contender: the King of Beers. Coorsâ€™ rival company Anheuser-Busch, the North American unit of A-B InBev and brewer of Budweiser and Bud Light, has filed an official complaint with the Nationall Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus about the truthfulness of Coorsâ€™ advertising campaign.