Do you truly advocate beer ?

Discussion in 'Australia & New Zealand' started by vancurly, Mar 10, 2012.

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  1. vancurly

    vancurly Initiate (0) Jun 28, 2006 Australia

    Or are you simply a wanker ?

    I've been a conscientious lurker for some months now, but the "Not cool, Local Taphouse" has drawn me out of semi-retirement. To mix metaphors badly, this thread broke the camel's back.

    So, I'm going to have one last swipe, then follow the likes of vinthebrewer & chaosworrier into retirement.

    I joined BA in 2006; it was a vibrant community whereby brewers, vendors, and punters all contributed to the betterment of the local scene. This was long before "Beer and Brewer" was published, and so was a vital network of news, and encouragement.

    The growth of the Aussie beer scene (including NSW) has been phenomenal. But, as with many things, rapid growth brings unfortunate consequences. We are not simply spoilt for choice: we are, like rich brats, spoiled as well. For the life of me I cannot fathom quotes such as "and NSW beers are frankly not very good on the whole". Can the writer of this quote recall the Sydney beer scene of 10 years ago ? 20 years ?

    How about some advocating, yeah ? The brewers in this forum couldn't give a flying fuck if you've tried Cantillon. They would much rather some constructive feedback about their products; some honest, well-considered feedback. Simply dissing them in a globally-read forum serves noone at all. Consider the ramifications your "informed" comments may have on a visitor to this country.

    Guys like Scotty, Tim, Ian, Neal and others are to be commended for what they have done for the industry. And they do so not because, but in spite of the crap that gets posted in BA.

    There. I'm done.
    Chaz likes this.
  2. tewaris

    tewaris Initiate (0) Jul 14, 2009 Minnesota

    > Or are you simply a wanker ?

    I know I am
  3. danieelol

    danieelol Savant (955) Jun 15, 2010 Australia

    Yep, I'm pretty much fine with being a wanker by your definition

    glad we resolved that one

    If I was best mates with the brewers like you and Scotty are then maybe I'd feel differently, but unfortunately I do not.
  4. Fitzmke

    Fitzmke Initiate (0) Dec 27, 2011 Texas

    1st world problems
  5. Lukie

    Lukie Initiate (0) Jun 16, 2007 Australia

    I'll try and keep this somewhat reserved, because I am not trying to offend people in the brewing industry.

    Positives. I actively promote the breweries and beers that I feel deserve it. I tell people on a daily basis to go to Feral, and as soon as I heard about their sour brewery, and what they plan on doing, I have been telling everyone. I promote several other Eastern states breweries, that brew consistently good beer. Stone & Wood, Mountain Goat, Murray's, 4 Pines. But then this comes back to the people on Beer Advocate. The base ranges from these breweries don't really excite the people here on this site. They might be consistently good brews, but I personally have no interest in drinking a Kolsch, for example. Will happily point it out to others who are after that kind of beer though, since 4 Pines do a consistently decent Kolsch.

    I won't go in to the negatives, except to say that giving constructive criticism to brewers, especially about infected beer, pretty much leaves to be dismissed by them as knowing nothing about beer.
  6. LaneMeyer

    LaneMeyer Initiate (0) Mar 20, 2011 California

  7. dannyc

    dannyc Initiate (0) Mar 10, 2012

    If I like it, I promote it, if not I will try my best to explain why.
  8. dgilks

    dgilks Initiate (0) Jul 14, 2008 Australia

    There is not much more to say than this. Particularly that last paragraph and also the bit about not brewing exciting beers. Unfortunately, in too many cases, "constructive criticism" is taken by the brewers to mean "positive feedback".
  9. dwaz

    dwaz Initiate (0) Jan 18, 2008 Pennsylvania

    I don't really have a dog in this fight being from the US, but I've been following this regional forum recently since I'm leaving Australia and New Zealand later today. Anyway Vancurly, we have the same problem in the US with the craft beer scene and the people spewing all kinds of negativity at certain breweries,bars and/or beers. Recnet threads were so bad that the owners of Dogfish Head, Sam Cagniolone, and Sam Adams, Jim Koch, responded on beeradvocate to negativity and false statements re: their beers, and the "Paradox of Popularity". I always wish members of this site would be more constructive and less negative, but it's the internet and opinions are like assholes, everyone's got one.

    As for the ramifications on visitors to your country, I think most people just take the negative comments with a grain of salt. Not calling Mulder out or anything, but I think he started the "Not Cool Taphouse" thread. For what it's worth, Mulder recommended the Local Taphouse when I asked for recommendations in Sydney and E-mailed me privately with the same recommendation, so I would commend him as ture "beer advocate".
  10. danieelol

    danieelol Savant (955) Jun 15, 2010 Australia

    the other side of the coin is that discerning beer drinkers aren't going to be happy if you tell them to spend their money on something which turns out to be a crap example of the style. Far too many of these beers still floating around unfortunately.

    What's the point of constructive feedback, these guys should learn to brew first before inflicting their beers upon the world

    and frankly this whole thread is extremely disingenuous seeing as your mate Scotty frequently goes on far more obnoxious rants here than anything else I've seen. The agenda of this thread "Sydneysiders should put up and shut up" is all too apparent.
  11. MrKennedy

    MrKennedy Champion (893) Dec 29, 2006 Australia
    Beer Trader

    In answer to your thread title, i believe so...but if you beg to differ and think i'm a wanker, i won't take my ball and go home, i'll probably just open a beer instead and move on. But happy to discuss via a conversation on here if you want.

    You aren't a fan of negative feedback if you don't believe it is warranted, i'm not a view of positive feedback where it is not warranted...i was at the Hop Harvest Festival last year at Paddy's Markets, drove some mates there, had some was ok, one was poor and the other average...mates drank some more and weren't blown away by any means...i return home, checked my Twitter feed later only to see it blown up with all these people raving about and hyping beers that i thought were totally undeserving of the praise...who does that benefit? The person with the inflated expectations looking to get into craft? the regular craft drinker? None of them. As for brewers seeking feedback, i'm not so sure that all brewers on here welcome feedback, which is their prerogative.

    As for people visiting the country, i can't remember the last person to post in this forum seeking advice on where to visit where i haven't offered to catch up for a beer and provide them advice on good beers to seek out, places to visit etc.

    If a disagreement on an internet forum is enough to send you into retirement (so to speak), then so be it. I don't agree with everything that's posted on BA, but i certainly appreciate the different points of view and use them to form my own.

    It's a scattered reply, i know, but there seemed to be numerous issues/points raised.
  12. spicelab

    spicelab Crusader (773) Nov 6, 2009 Australia
    Beer Trader

    I've enjoyed and learnt a lot from your posts since I first started lurking on this site in late 2007, and mostly found what you write to be mature and thoughtful, so it's especially disappointing to see you resort to a "screw you guys, you're all c*nts" hit-and-run style swan song.

    You appear to be saying that because things have improved immeasurably in the last X years (undoubtedly true), we as consumers should be bloody grateful for what we've got and just shut up. The trouble is you could apply this same argument to just about any aspect of human existence. About 150 years ago we were grateful for running water. Does that mean no-one should have agitated for improved water quality standards?

    Unless you have something against rampant consumerism per se, you probably see improvement (and growth) as an ongoing process, which may be judged relative to what everyone else is doing. It is in this regard that some BAs consider the Sydney craft scene is being badly left behind by the rest of Oz (which in itself is lagging NZ), and are questioning why this is occurring, especially in an era of ever-improving access to people, products and information (including previously guarded brewing secrets).

    This assessment of Sydney is debatable, but it's not really controversial. As others have pointed out, the big issue seems to be fundamental differences between how people whose livelihood is invested in the industry perceive and react to criticism, which has generated an us against them mentality. In the worst cases this has created a bizarre form of political correctness whereby any criticism from someone outside of the industry is taken as a deeply personal attack.

    It's impossible to offer "constructive" criticism as a consumer to someone who is predisposed to write you off as an ignorant fool. Unfortunately, the absence of criticism leads to groupthink within the industry and a belief that everything is just as it should be.

    I have massive respect for what guys like Scotty, Tim, Sean, Ian and Neal have done for NSW craft to date. However, I think it somewhat disrespectful to them to assert, as you seem to, that they shouldn't aspire to do some things differently and/or better.
  13. Lukie

    Lukie Initiate (0) Jun 16, 2007 Australia

    I also think you made a poor call pointing out Cantillon.

    Where is my Aussie lambic producer to compare?
  14. MordeciaFunk

    MordeciaFunk Initiate (0) Feb 14, 2012 Australia

    I can't comment on the NSW secene, but here in WA it seems quite healthy. Everyone seems to understand the need for improvement and considered feedback. Of course, if you're a jerk about it, I feel every brewer has the right to be self-rightious and dismissive. If however you put across salient points, all of the brewers I've come across, are more then happy to listen.

    At my pub, we have recently been trialing a new beer. It's a light based around the brewery's staple. It was actually called _BT1 (_____ Brewey Test 1). The brewer was after feedback. Whether that be positive or otherwise. We are now up to_BT2. Because we're honest and open and the brewer is willing to experiment and try, everyone wins. Us, consumer, brewer.

    Apropos My Kenndy's comments about the twitter feedback, I was once at a beer launch where two people had poured their heart and soul into the beer. It was launched with much fanfare and a lot of people in the industry were there. The beer wasn't very good. It lacked flavour, was slightly off the marks style wise and just didn't turn people on. All along the development stage and tasting stage, all they got from sycophantic friends was how wonderful and delicious the beer was. The launch could have been an absolute disaster due to the fact that no-one had given them informed and honest feedback. However, due to the fact that people could offer constructive feedback and didn't just say it's shit, the brewers were able to walk away and develop their recipe and now it's is a good beer. Another point. I was at that beer launch. I didn't like that beer. I in-fact hated it. Then again, I dont like the style at all. I would rather drink Sail and Anchor Lukie's Dry Dock (he makes it, I swear). So when asked for my opinion, I stayed mute. To me it was a sh*t beer. That didn't mean it was a sh*t beer.

    Back to the original question. Do I advocate beer? Yes, I have to. It's my job. Mercenary, yes. I wouldn't however be in this industry unless I cared about it.

    Which is why we you witness such heated discussions in this forum. It's healthy. On one hand you have passionate consumers in the guise of Mr Mulder and Mr Danieelol demanding excellence and on the other you have the brewers praetorian guard in Mr scmorgan, defending the brewers and holding the consumers to account, by not taking 'It's sh*t' as a criticism. By Mr Mulder and Mr Danieelol not willing to settle for complacency and Mr scmorgan forcing people to articulate why something is good, bad or indifferent, we have a vibrant community. Long my the market place of ideas hold forth.

    My 2 cents. Actually it's a long post. My 4 cents.
  15. sirob

    sirob Initiate (140) May 30, 2007 Australia

    Excellent post.

    One thing I'm not sure I'm comfortable with though is the test batch 1 test batch 2 thing. These are meant to be professionals, they should charge us for a grade fresh beer not market research. That's what home brew is for. Ifnthey want us to take part in a market research project for them then either pay the consumer or at a minimum provide beer free of charge. Paying full price for beer that is still in development offends me a bit.

    An alternative would be what I think feral did with there first run of hop hog and golden ace. Correct me if I'm wrong but I think they sold it real cheap cause they were good brews but not what they pictured for the actual finished product.
  16. Lukie

    Lukie Initiate (0) Jun 16, 2007 Australia

    I think it was Nail's Light beer. It's supposed to be pretty darn good.

    And are you a man to tell John Stallwood he is wrong in doing what he does? John Stallwood is a gentleman and a scholar.
  17. mulder1010

    mulder1010 Meyvn (1,019) Aug 29, 2008 Australia

    His beef is with me. Plain and simple. That is fine as I posted what I posted.
    My vent had nothing to do with any brewer. What Rocks makes and what I like are not the same. Though I really enjoyed his IPA and thought it was top notch.
    I have gone the The Australian Brewery and Pub in Rouse Hill a couple of times. I like and suggest Hart's Pub to anybody who is here and asks on this forum and will do so to the Taphouse. Even though I am seriously disappointed in them right now. I do not want to look on their site and see Mikkel only in Melbourne or the Beer Here head brewer only in Melbourne at provisions. I would think people here in Sydney would want to see them and say hello to either (yes they were here for other reasons but it would be neat). Rather meet a brewer than have boccie ball court.
    To imply anybody on here is a bad BA is just bad. There are some wonderful people on here and the generosity that is not seen on this site should be noted.
    All in all, at the end of the day being a BA off the site is far more important anyway. What you are in person as a BA is much more relevant than behind a computer, in a blog, twitter, or facebook. It is just a forum to express opinion, information, kill time from work at the office, or have fun.
  18. Lukie

    Lukie Initiate (0) Jun 16, 2007 Australia

    Mulder1010 is one of the biggest, if not the biggest, advocate of good beer I know. For anyone to question him, is absolute absurdity.
  19. Darwin553

    Darwin553 Initiate (67) Jan 5, 2009 Australia

    I blame dig. Ever since he left the site has gone downhill ;-)

    On a more serious note, there is room for both types of BAs on here. The constructive feedback giving consumer BA and the passionate yet proud brewer BAs. I just think that they both have to give a little ground and be a bit more understanding of the opposing's position at times when coming to the table.
  20. sirob

    sirob Initiate (140) May 30, 2007 Australia

    Lukie it's not about the person. Same comments would apply if it was Sam Calagione, or Garret Oliver. It's principal, charging full commercial price for a product the brewer isn't happy enough with to settle on I'm not sure is fair.
  21. Lukie

    Lukie Initiate (0) Jun 16, 2007 Australia

    He was happy with it. In fact the whole idea of it was to gauge the market for reaction to a really good low alcohol beer. Feedback was great.

    He wasn't producing the beer and selling it because it wasn't up to par. He was putting it out in small quantities to see if it was viable to do in large scale and bottle.
  22. CellarGimp

    CellarGimp Disciple (331) Sep 14, 2011 Missouri

    Where liters flow and men chunder.
  23. MordeciaFunk

    MordeciaFunk Initiate (0) Feb 14, 2012 Australia

    The beer in question was up to par. Very good infact. If it wasn't, we wopuld not have put it on tap in the first place. Lukie is correct in his summation.

    It wasn't a matter of whether the beer was any good, it was a matter of whether the public were willing to accept it.

    I may make the best beer in the world, my specialty pumpkin, chilli adjunct lager kriek lambic. Is the world ready for it? No.

    One day when I think they are, I may release it and then find I have to slightly tweak the flavours to suit the consumer.

    I'm sure this is how Carlton Draught came about.
  24. danieelol

    danieelol Savant (955) Jun 15, 2010 Australia

    I've never understood why the majority of the drinking public apparently loves the taste of metal brewing tanks, as that is the predominant flavour I get in all macro beers
  25. LeRouge

    LeRouge Initiate (0) May 4, 2011 Arkansas

    Last one to the beer is the
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