Craft beer spends an inordinate amount of time trying to define itself, not by what it is, but by what is not. Too often small brewers have contented themselves with a David versus Goliath narrative instead of touting their positives.
In December, when the Brewers Association named Schell’s on their list of breweries they do not consider “craft,” Marti took to the internet. His protest letter to the Brewers Association went viral, and became symbolic of the strong reaction many had to the list (which the organization has since redacted).
Take a good, long last look at the world of craft beer. In five years, 10 years, the craft beer industry won’t look anything like it does now. With the close of the “Extreme Beer Era,” we’re now entering craft beer’s fourth age, one that will be defined by striking sobriety and grownup decision-making.
Instead of blindly supporting something because it’s been labeled “craft,” how about we simply support brewers who make good beer with good intentions? And that’s “good” as defined by the consumer, not others who might have a vested interest.