As craft brewers push to distinguish themselves from Big Beer, revenue from higher-priced premium beers is increasing faster than any other craft segment. Will that make the $8 six-pack a thing of the past?
Boston has long been an old city with a newness problem. This adherence to tradition also applies to beer. But veer off the path—into Somerville, Charlestown, or Everett—and you’ll find a vibrant subculture of drinkers, brewers, and restaurateurs doing their own thing.
Craft breweries of all sizes are shipping their beer to far-flung accounts. So how do they maintain the condition of their beer, please fickle customers, and simultaneously grow their brands? The answer is cold storage.
The brewer behind Sam Adams Black Lager, Angry Orchard and Utopias kept an eye on the beer scene in his home state of Texas, and in early 2012 he left Boston Beer Co. to help launch Revolver Brewing near Dallas.
Drone to drop beer to concertgoers; Alabama passes bill legalizing homebrewing; Modern Times Brewing sets Kickstarter record; more breweries switch up containers; and Oregon votes to designate brewer’s yeast “Official State Microbe.”
Nonprofit pub to open in Oregon; two more defunct beer brands revived; Pabst launches interactive marketing campaign to promote Rainier Brewery; Lost Abbey crashes Lost Abbey tasting party; super PAC to foster change by funding happy hours.
True brand loyalty implies an attachment to the brand itself and what it represents. Like Harley-Davidson riders who equate the brand with outlaws and the open road, and Apple owners fanatically devoted to design.
Supplanted by seasonal brands, endangered by the race for the holy one-off grail, and lost in the hunt for more hops, these respected and balanced brands look increasingly out of place in the wider world of craft beer.
Goodwill among brewers doesn’t stop at the occasional tank or piece of advice. It’s an industry-wide culture that can be found at every stage—from conception of a brewery or beer to execution, to, yes, even consumption.
Adverse growing conditions impact the Canadian barley crop; archaeological site provides oldest evidence of brewing in France; non-alcoholic Weissbier’s health benefits; New Century Brewing closes; and Charles Koch Jr. passes away at 88.
In addition to their bittering, flavor, and aroma properties, hops help stabilize beer foam, kill unwanted bacteria, and, according to some studies, impart body-boosting antioxidants. Future breeds might bring an entire revolution to the brewing industry.
Labatt’s dismantlement of Lakeport brewery draws local resentment; Obama receives Maine beer package; Boston Beer founder Jim Koch petitions for national Patriots’ Day; San Francisco’s iconic Anchor Brewing sold.
Even amidst the constantly buzzing news of special-release beers from exciting new breweries from Dallas to Denmark, let’s take a moment to remember the craft brewing pioneers and help them celebrate their achievements.
Darling banned from local British pubs; Boston Beer Co. donates to Freetown; Michelob wins independence; Heineken takes over Scottish & Newcastle; LCBO turns to American craft beer; and A-B no longer exclusive.