IPA: Mainstay or Fad?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by Shane_Bellone, Mar 16, 2019.

  1. jesskidden

    jesskidden Poo-Bah (2,050) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    Not that I can think of, off hand. I noted above how I've collected my reference material - like the below - but it's hit or miss and seldom exactly what you're looking for (and ya gotta save what ya find). The IRI sales figures, which come in volume (cases, not barrels) or in dollars are, at best, indications of trends and not actual exact sales, because of how they're collected (retail level) and then only from certain types of retailers.
    But they're good enough for the industry, so....
  2. thesherrybomber

    thesherrybomber Devotee (413) Jun 13, 2017 California
    Society Trader

    I can't remember if it was this site, but I remember someone from England saying American (and American inspired) pale ales, IPAs, etc. served in a separate category than their English counterparts (also labeled as something other than pale ale, IPA, etc. and more along the lines of "American ale", or something). Guessing they're seen as being as different as a German pilsner and American adjunct lager. You wouldn't imagine them being sold side-by-side.
  3. Nickwierda

    Nickwierda Initiate (139) Feb 8, 2015 New Jersey

    Soooo are we done here?
  4. Shane_Bellone

    Shane_Bellone Initiate (30) Nov 22, 2018 Connecticut

    It seems as if fellow members are currently a DIPAs in while posting. For a fad to end, the product does not have to stop existing. Do mullets still exist? How about wide-leg jeans? Tribal tattoos? Fads ending have more to do with their exit from pop culture than ceasing to exist.

    Yes, IPAs have been around a minute but as others have mentioned -- today's IPAs are extremely dissimilar to those.

    Speaking IPA culture though.... Notice how IPA fans do see IPAs as the only choice. They remain unable to concede that they may not be the one worthy choice until man has ceased walking the earth.

    Sure, everyone who received a tramp stamp during the '90s thought the same. But you're more rational than them, right? :slight_smile:
  5. MistaRyte

    MistaRyte Zealot (553) Jan 14, 2008 Virginia

    I remember my first post... "Is it OK to almost exclusively drink new stuff/Pokemon - gotta collect em all!"... I low balled it.
    HorseheadsHophead likes this.
  6. LarryV

    LarryV Poo-Bah (1,928) Jun 13, 2001 Massachusetts

    And the point is?
    rodbeermunch likes this.
  7. mudbug

    mudbug Defender (621) Mar 27, 2009 Oregon

    Well since a brewer only needs to show a picture of hops to the wort in order to stick the IPA marketing tool onto the label I'd say it's not a fad.
  8. Oktoberfiesta

    Oktoberfiesta Aspirant (283) Nov 16, 2013 New Mexico

    Almost every local brewery around here has stated many times through many avenues that their core IPAs make up a good 2/3rds of their sales. But that was 2-3 years back. Many have spent millions on upgrades knowing what has been their mainstay money maker. I guess fad isn't the right word that I would be looking at. Maybe diversity? Do breweries have to be more diverse now? Yes. I think they do.

    But I'm also not looking at ipas as merely hazy limited quick sales. There are two branches of ipas. The former has had Longevity for atleast 10-16 years. The other may be fragile.
  9. unlikelyspiderperson

    unlikelyspiderperson Meyvn (1,426) Mar 12, 2013 California
    Society Trader

    So it seems we can say that the potential 'fad' of IPAs started around the year 2000. And if anything it seems to have expanded it's appeal in the intervening (nearly) 2 decades. It appears to be leading the revolution (in the sense of a cycling not an overturning) in beer globally, and most of the 'fad' styles have been different takes on the IPA foundation. If you describe an IPA as an ale brewed with a focus on some aspect of hop flavors then I think it's safe to say that the IPA has passed the fad phase and is now a global beer mainstay
  10. Optifron

    Optifron Initiate (113) Aug 17, 2012 Minnesota

    Agreed, second post makes much more sense. To that second post, the idea that the current large share of the total craft market that is IPAs being a fad, I (maybe just hopefully) agree. I don’t expect it to turn around tomorrow, but I’ve got to imagine that people will get bored with “variety packs” of 4 IPAs and actually want other beers and the balance will tip back. But who knows. Maybe IPA is just our generation’s AAL.
  11. HoppyBastard

    HoppyBastard Defender (615) Sep 6, 2013 Nebraska

    Hoppy Bastard is here to help in these confusing times. It turns out the IPA really is a popular style of beer and not just a fad. Just like the horseless carriage and electricity. I think we can close down this thread now. Thank you.
  12. patto1ro

    patto1ro Zealot (564) Apr 26, 2004 Netherlands

    All styles fade and die.
  13. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,610) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania

    And some come back from the dead - e.g., Grodsizkie.

    Cheers to Zombie beer styles!!!!!!!!!
    FBarber likes this.
  14. IPAExpert69

    IPAExpert69 Aspirant (216) Aug 2, 2017 Pennsylvania

    MY LIFE AND SCREEN NAMES ARE JUST A FAD?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!
  15. nadohawk

    nadohawk Initiate (61) Apr 7, 2013 California

    Most definitely a mainstay. The fad IMO would be the hazy IPAs; they seem to appeal to the consumers who don't like the bitter taste of IPAs. And maybe a fad as well, but calling every style of beer you add hops to as "Insert beer style" IPA.
    Eduk8traz likes this.
  16. ScaryEd

    ScaryEd Poo-Bah (2,465) Feb 19, 2012 New Hampshire

    I don't want to help turn this into a "West Coast vs. NEIPA" thread but I recently visited Pennsylvania and had Fat Head's Headhunter and Hop Juju on draft and it made me nostalgic for that style of beer, that has seemingly been thrown to the wayside.

    I love hazy IPA's. I'm a "Haze boi" as much as anyone else but a great, clean bitter IPA is something to behold. To me, nothing beats that flavor when it first hits your tongue.

    I hope NEIPA's never go away, but I also hope the "West Coast" style IPA's hang around forever too. Variety is good.
    pjeagles, Eduk8traz, seakayak and 2 others like this.
  17. pro100

    pro100 Initiate (106) Oct 12, 2014 California

    Is this a thread that was made ten years ago?
  18. neenerzig

    neenerzig Poo-Bah (2,650) Feb 15, 2006 Ohio

    Putting aside the fact for a moment that as a style of beer, IPAs are hundreds of years old, the fact that IPAs have been a main stay in the American craft beer scene/culture for over 15 years now at this point I'd say show us that this is a very popular beer style that has staying power.

  19. oldbean

    oldbean Disciple (364) Jun 30, 2005 Massachusetts

    It's so weird. It's like asking if hot sauce is a fad.
  20. IPAExpert69

    IPAExpert69 Aspirant (216) Aug 2, 2017 Pennsylvania

    This is why there are so many varieties of beer to love and enjoy, but that doesn't mean the IPA is a fad, destined to go away to the margins of relevance like the mullet :grin: Your argument is baseless on it's premise, therefore I pronounce you a troll! Congratulations!
    #60 IPAExpert69, Mar 19, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2019
  21. jayrutgers

    jayrutgers Aspirant (202) Oct 29, 2011 New Jersey

    35% of a large market, especially now that Yinlins are considered craft is pretty dominant. Does the next highest even break 15%?
    AlcahueteJ likes this.
  22. FBarber

    FBarber Poo-Bah (3,697) Mar 5, 2016 Illinois
    Moderator Society Trader

    Well is it?
    rgordon and MNAle like this.
  23. GormBrewhouse

    GormBrewhouse Devotee (491) Jun 24, 2015 Vermont

    Nope, not a fad, just gets a change up from time to time. All good, stouts included.
  24. BayAreaJoe

    BayAreaJoe Savant (922) Nov 23, 2017 California

    These kinds of threads are the fad right now.
  25. lightman1

    lightman1 Initiate (88) Oct 19, 2013 Arkansas

    IPA's have been around long enough to be well past the "fad" stage. There is a lot of newer stuff going on with IPA's. But fad, no.
  26. jesskidden

    jesskidden Poo-Bah (2,050) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    I guess I think "Dominant" should imply close to half the (Craft) market. I see it as 2/3 of craft isn't IPA .

    And since
    "Craft" (B.A. defined) is only about 12% of the total US beer market and even if one adds the barrelage of the ex-craft (Lagunitas, Founders, GI and the other ABers) -so, IPA is, what -at best - 5% of the total beer market?

    Now "Light Beer" - That's (still - for now) Dominant.
    chimneyjim likes this.
  27. IPAnicked

    IPAnicked Disciple (318) Mar 29, 2018 Canada

    Ummm IPAs have been around since 1840. Or are you referring to the Hazy versions?
    neenerzig and HorseheadsHophead like this.
  28. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,610) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania

    IPAs were around prior to 1840. I would recommend the IPA book written by Mitch Steele to you.

    rgordon and IPAnicked like this.
  29. pjbear05

    pjbear05 Initiate (129) May 28, 2008 Florida

    When I see 2 or 3 IPA's on the tapline of most bars I walk into? Here in South Florida, which I once referred to as a land of "BAC swilling yokels?

    A fad? Yeah, right.
    HorseheadsHophead likes this.
  30. HorseheadsHophead

    HorseheadsHophead Poo-Bah (2,156) Sep 15, 2014 New York

    Yep, you got it! IPAs suck! They've only been popular for a few months and will probably die any day now. I'm sure most IPA fans will easily forget them in a few months when something new comes along. They've never really been all that well-liked or received, anyway. Just another boring fad, for sure.

    Okay, I'm sorry. I couldn't not give a sarcastic answer. :grin::grin::grin:

    Since he like stouts, I'm thinking maybe he solo-domed a four pack of World Wide Stout? :thinking_face::joy::joy:
  31. neenerzig

    neenerzig Poo-Bah (2,650) Feb 15, 2006 Ohio

    I'm also quite a big chili head. I love all different kinds/styles of hot sauce from many different hot sauce companies, just like with beers and breweries! :slight_smile:

  32. GratefulBeerGuy

    GratefulBeerGuy Poo-Bah (3,071) May 20, 2006 New Hampshire
    Society Trader

    New England Style IPA's are also a legit style...here to stay! I would say.
  33. dgmirelli

    dgmirelli Aspirant (271) Mar 21, 2015 New York

    For IPA's to go "away" alot of palates are going to have to make another drastic change....not sure mine will be able to.....I've tried.....
  34. OTB

    OTB Devotee (494) Sep 2, 2011 California

    I dont think your " one of the unfortunate few " with regards to gastro-intestinal issues with yeast driven hazy beers. It's more prevalent than you think.I personally know several people who suffer from the effects that hazes have on the gastro track.

    gopens44 likes this.
  35. FatBoyGotSwagger

    FatBoyGotSwagger Meyvn (1,489) Apr 4, 2009 Pennsylvania

    I would say mainstay but there is a problem here that will ultimately leave IPA a fad. The continued evolution of the style. It went from very malty and very hoppy, to less malty and more hoppy. Then along came NEIPA. The problem is with the evolution you lose some and gain some until as @patto1ro said every style dies. Unless it stops changing this will lead to its own demise.

    To be honest I don't even think brewers today brew better IPAs then in years past. They have different and better hops to lean on. A lot of beer drinkers shouldn't be praising the newer brewers rather than the modern day hop growers.
  36. nc41

    nc41 Poo-Bah (2,430) Sep 25, 2008 North Carolina
    Society Trader

    Disagree, great lagers and Pils cross the boundary between craft drinkers and aal drinkers. They’re approachable and easy drinking in a style that most like. Weird ipa offshoots stand tall as a candidate for fad status, but classical beers not so much.
    AlcahueteJ likes this.
  37. FatBoyGotSwagger

    FatBoyGotSwagger Meyvn (1,489) Apr 4, 2009 Pennsylvania

    The thing about those 2, the Lager and the Pils.. if they die all beer dies.
    Zorro and nc41 like this.
  38. nc41

    nc41 Poo-Bah (2,430) Sep 25, 2008 North Carolina
    Society Trader

    It’s just so very basic, most start off with lighter lagers like Budweiser sneaking a warm 6 in the woods at 16. Back in the day a step up was Lowenbrau and or Heineken, really the only real step up for most. But the style is beers guys have loved for over 100 years or more, definitely more. Lagers are the backbone in the beer industry.
  39. Zorro

    Zorro Poo-Bah (4,883) Dec 25, 2003 California

    IPAs are a fad.

    But a fad as in not every damn beer has to be an IPA, there are other styles. But it is way easier to hide a badly made beer with hops than it is to make a good Lager.
  40. chipawayboy

    chipawayboy Devotee (449) Oct 26, 2007 Massachusetts

    I think that’s changing. I go to the UK at least once a year and the boomerang of style influence from US to UK has happened in a big way. Tons of small start up brewers are making west coast and NEIPA and serving them in all forms — bottle/force carb draft and traditional cask. All of this being served alongside plenty of traditional UK bitters, pales, Milds, ESBs and IPAs. Cheers.