Category: Feature

Building Beertown: The Economic Allure of Brewing for Three Small Communities Feature by

Small towns across the US—often defined by their past and reeling from the fallout of lost jobs and dwindling populations—are turning to a decidedly trending industry to help guide their future: beer. We look at three recent examples.

Super Shoppers: Why Beer Buyers Are the Brewing Industry’s New Celebrity Gatekeepers Feature by

The art of choosing which beer to sell has become a highly competitive, data-driven process, and the tastemaking “beer buyers” with the job are often regarded as celebrity gatekeepers who can make or break upstart breweries.

The Birth of the Beer Hunter: Looking Back on Michael Jackson’s Legacy Feature by

The Beer Hunter was a persona. Michael Jackson, on the other hand, was a complex person, with all of his faults, foibles, and doubts in tow.

The Pride of Belchertown: How The Shelton Brothers Changed the Face of Beer and Brewing Feature by

In bringing attention to little-known brewers from across the globe and reigniting passion for nearly forgotten styles like Gose and Lambic, the three Shelton brothers also established a company that changed the face of beer and brewing—but not without controversy.

Feral Ones: The Unlikely Origins of Firestone Walker’s Barrelworks Feature by

How Barrelworks, Firestone Walker’s sour and wild beer program, got its unlikely start from an under-the-radar side project by two brewing professionals who had previously dedicated their careers to eradicating beer-spoiling bacteria.

Class of 2016: 34 of the Best New Breweries in the US Feature by

From seasoned pros starting highly anticipated new projects to industry newcomers nailing classic styles in small towns, we profile 34 of the best new breweries to open their doors in 2016.

Baltic Brewing: In Estonia, a Farmhouse Tradition Survives Feature by

The remote Estonian islands, an hours-long journey from the capital of Tallinn, have preserved many of the country’s cultural traditions, including brewing the rustic farmhouse ale Koduõlu.

Class of 2015: 33 of the Best New Breweries Feature by

From farm breweries to barrel aging and blending specialists, more than two new breweries opened per day in 2015. We profile 33 of the most promising newcomers.

The New Primitives: In the Hudson Valley, Young Brewers Envision a Simple Future for New York Beer Feature by

New York State’s introduction of the Farm Brewery License in 2013, paired with Governor Andrew Cuomo’s administration’s pro-brewery stance, has encouraged small farm breweries to open in the Hudson Valley.

Charm City Rising: Baltimore’s Urban Brewing Renaissance Feature by

Baltimore once had a flourishing beer economy thanks in part to an influx of German and Eastern European immigrants. By the end of 1899, it was home to more than 40 breweries. Competition beginning in the 1950s steadily decreased this number until Hugh Sisson opened the state’s first brewpub in 1989.

There and Back Again: Ryan Witter-Merithew’s Journey to the Frontiers of Brewing Feature by

Ryan Witter-Merithew is a man of many faces. There’s the inventive, open-minded brewer whose talent earned him a job at Hill Farmstead; the loyal friend for whom others come first; and then there’s the eternally mischievous malcontent who likes nothing better than to wind people up on Twitter.

Lightning in a Barrel: Art Larrance, Ron Gansberg and the Origins of Cascade Brewing Feature by

The beers that have shocked and awed fans and made the Cascade Barrel House a destination for locals and tourists are the collaborative offspring of owner Art Larrance and brewmaster Ron Gansberg.

Class of 2014: 28 of the Best New Breweries Feature by

From revisiting—and reinventing—historic styles to brewing for a cause, it was a year for innovative brewery openings. Here we profile 28 newcomers.

Labor of Love: Pay, Benefits, and Safety in the Fast-Growing Brewing Industry Feature by

For craft brewery employees, passion often comes at a cost, as the industry strives to create competitive jobs. Enthusiastic homebrewers and beer connoisseurs trade pay, benefits, and comfort on the job for the chance to work in a fast-growing industry.

Class of 2013 Feature by

The craft beer industry might wring its hands over the bubble bursting, trademark wars and dilution of quality. But intrepid brewers are bringing craft beer culture to even the most remote pockets of the country. From medal-clad hombrewers to old-school pros looking to get back to basics, the folks behind these new operations are a diverse bunch.

Class of 2012 Feature by

This year, nanobreweries proved they’re here to stay, while “gypsy” brewers continued to produce some of the best beer in the market. New breweries capitalized on the session beer movement. And in a saturated market, some plucky startups opened on the strength of a niche concept, like Bière de Champagne.

So Bad, It’s Good: Crazy Ed’s Cave Creek Chili Beer Feature by

Shortly after Michael Jackson’s ill-fated visit, Ed Chilleen concocted possibly the most despised beer of all time: Crazy Ed’s Cave Creek Chili Beer.

Class of 2011 Feature by

No one knows what lies ahead—but if these intrepid small-business owners are any indication, craft beer will be just fine. Here are just a few of the stories that made 2011 one of the best years for craft beer in the country’s history.

Valley Malt: New England’s First Micro-Maltster Feature by

Before New England’s Valley Malt existed, a farmhouse brewery could never truly be a farmhouse brewery, and a harvest beer could never truly be a harvest beer.

BadAss BeerAdvocates Feature by

Join us for our annual nod to these badasses as we raise our pints in their general direction, honoring them for their contributions to the beer industry and for giving beer the respect it deserves. Cheers!

Weyermann Maltings: German Roots, Global Reach Feature by

What started as “a tiny shop under a tarp lean-to in downtown Bamberg,” is now the world’s largest organic malt producer, supplying more than 80 different types of malts to clients in 115 countries—and they’re still evolving.

Profiles in Beer Feature by

Join us in our annual nod to those who help make beer more than just another beverage with buzz. Raise your glass and holla “Cheers!” to these badass beer advocates.

Kimo von Oelhoffen Feature by

The same hands trained to rip through waves of offensive linemen in the NFL evoke the warmth of an affable family man who owns one of eastern Washington’s most celebrated brewpubs.

Profiles in Beer Feature by

It’s time once again to pay homage to eight greats of the brewing industry in our annual nod to those who make beer more than just a beverage.

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