The worst trends in beer according to brewers

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by Snowcrash000, Jul 31, 2019.

  1. Snowcrash000

    Snowcrash000 Poo-Bah (1,967) Oct 4, 2017 Germany
    Moderator Society Trader

    "We Asked 20 Brewers: What Are the Worst Trends in Beer Right Now?

    Not all beer trends are created equal. Some have staying power and become national or global phenomena, while others fizzle quickly. There are several movements coursing through American breweries that are worth celebrating, but, for now, let’s focus on the absolute worst. We’re examining the garbage gimmicks that deserve a good riddance. That leave a bad taste in your mouth."
    (words: Niko Krommydas)

    https://vinepair.com/articles/20-worst-beer-trends-craft/

    “A trend making me sad, but I don’t see it ever going away, unfortunately, is the ouroboros of hype. People want to get a beer everyone’s talking about, stand in line for its release or pay scandalous money, sometimes more than eightfold the initial price, and of course they will rate it marvelous even if it’s just O.K. Nobody wants to admit putting a lot of effort, be it time or money or both, into just a good beer. So they call it exceptional and more people want it. And here we go again. This leaves out of the spectrum of attention thousands of really good breweries. Plus, there is enjoyment-versus-price ratio. Do you feel that beer was worth every penny you paid? Sometimes you pay a lot but feel cheated because the beer wasn’t as great as you expected it to be. And if someone pays way more than the brewery price and is not happy, all the discontent unfairly goes to the brewer, not to the secondary market trader in part driving the hype.” — Lana Svitankova, Speaker, Varvar Brew

    “I think ratings on apps and websites have taken some of the human element out of craft beer. While it’s great to have craft-beer fans excited about beer X, Y, or Z, I often see consumers relying too heavily on ratings to drive what they purchase as opposed to having a conversation with their bartenders and brewers. Most all of my beer ‘Aha!’ moments have come through connecting with someone and trying something completely new and unfamiliar. I think it’s our jobs as brewers and bartenders to help guide more of those experiences for craft-beer fans.” —
    Corey Gargiulo, General Manager, Evil Twin Brewing NYC

    “The beer community is a vocal one, and we love how people freely review, discuss, and share their opinions about beers they try. However, a trend I see that isn’t constructive is a tendency of people to default their reviews to a comparison of any given beer to an archetype of that beer style. As opposed to evaluating a beer as an independent expression of a style — and most importantly whether they liked it! — it becomes more a question of does it taste like X beer or is it better than Y beer. We as a brewery place primary importance on innovation and are never trying to duplicate an expression of any given style. So, we believe it would be a positive move for craft beer if the community would keep an open mind and evaluate beers as unique steps along an evolution of a style, not a catalog of archetype imitations.” — Harris Stewart, Founder and CEO, TrimTab Brewing

    “I’m tired of breweries ignoring sexual harassment and sexism and treating it as ‘boys being boys.’ In over half of the breweries I’ve worked at, I‘ve experienced examples as blatant as a head brewer telling everyone he would screw me straight. Or less obvious instances where a man asks why I’m the one carrying something heavy. It’s 2019 and I demand equality and respect.” — Megan Stone, Brewer

    “Not enough minorities, blacks, and Hispanics drinking craft beer. I’ve been in the brewing industry since 2015 and have experienced nothing but greatness from the beer to the people who enter our establishment. What I do not see, though, is a lot of color. … Overall, I’ve experienced great beers and breweries but I would love to see more diversity in the industry.” — James Higgs, Intern, Forager Brewery
     
  2. meefmoff

    meefmoff Defender (647) Jul 6, 2014 Massachusetts
    Society Trader

    Can anyone fill me in on what a "slow pour" pilsner is exactly?
     
  3. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,098) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Society

    I suspect that some folks will select their ‘favorites’ from that list for further discussion.

    I found the below to be a telling observation:

    “…a trend I see that isn’t constructive is a tendency of people to default their reviews to a comparison of any given beer to an archetype of that beer style. As opposed to evaluating a beer as an independent expression of a style — and most importantly whether they liked it! — it becomes more a question of does it taste like X beer or is it better than Y beer.”

    I have frequently seen this expressed in BA threads with statements like Brewery x makes a ‘nice’ beer style y beer but it was nothing like the beer I had from Brewery z that is located in Antarctica (or some other obscure place).

    If you liked the beer then be thankful for having an enjoyable drinking experience.

    Cheers to good beer!
     
  4. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,311) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    https://thetakeout.com/the-patient-art-of-the-slow-pour-pilsner-1822321388

    I looked at another article to see if it was any better than the above (it wasn't), and it had this line: "The slow pour changes the flavour in a number of ways. One, it warms the beer, so rather than being ice cold it’s served at just over room temperature."

    Um :thinking_face:. How will this bring an "ice cold" beer above room temp in a few minutes? Is the glass also on a burner?
     
  5. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,311) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    It's worth using the link in the OP to read the full list of brewer responses. That article was much more thoughtful than I expected it to be.
     
  6. Snowcrash000

    Snowcrash000 Poo-Bah (1,967) Oct 4, 2017 Germany
    Moderator Society Trader

    It's an archaic form of pouring a Pilsner from tap whereby the beer is poured very aggressively, creating lots of foam, which is then allowed to settle and this process is repeated until the beer can be topped off, also known as the "7-Minute-Pilsner".

    This was supposed to accentuate the aromas and create a softer carbonation, but has largely been debuncted as an outdated myth. According to the German Brewer's Association, all a slow pour does is turn the beer stale and warm.

    There's a whole, rather recent thread on it here on BA in the Germany sub-forum.
     
  7. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (10,900) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    I totally agree with this but it's by far not just the beer industry...

    “I’m tired of breweries ignoring sexual harassment and sexism and treating it as ‘boys being boys.’ In over half of the breweries I’ve worked at, I‘ve experienced examples as blatant as a head brewer telling everyone he would screw me straight. Or less obvious instances where a man asks why I’m the one carrying something heavy. It’s 2019 and I demand equality and respect.” — Megan Stone, Brewer
     
  8. Snowcrash000

    Snowcrash000 Poo-Bah (1,967) Oct 4, 2017 Germany
    Moderator Society Trader

    Honestly this is a terrible article from an American perspective that is woefully out of touch with the realities of the current German beer landscape. I was not able to find a single German article that still regards the slow pour as a good thing and claiming that this is "just how it's served in Germany" is ludicrous.
     
  9. ypsifly

    ypsifly Meyvn (1,048) Sep 22, 2004 Michigan

    FB and Untapped have hurt beer in that they have created a hive mind that only sees beer as awesome or crap with no room in between. It pains me when someone comes into the store and turns down any help but will spend forever tapping away at their phone trying to find the beers with the highest scores. How about asking me what something tastes like or compares to, in real time. Maybe we can each learn something about beer through an actual conversation.

    Its becoming anti-social media.
     
  10. joerooster

    joerooster Initiate (36) May 15, 2018 Virginia

    Anyone have an example of the following:

    “Big Beer creating new breweries in popular beer-centric destinations while posing them as independent startups. The average consumer is unaware that their money is not supporting the local craft-beer community, but rather the international beer conglomerates.”
     
  11. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (10,900) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    I think this is stupid...

    “I think ratings on apps and websites have taken some of the human element out of craft beer. While it’s great to have craft-beer fans excited about beer X, Y, or Z, I often see consumers relying too heavily on ratings to drive what they purchase as opposed to having a conversation with their bartenders and brewers. Most all of my beer ‘Aha!’ moments have come through connecting with someone and trying something completely new and unfamiliar. I think it’s our jobs as brewers and bartenders to help guide more of those experiences for craft-beer fans.” — Corey Gargiulo, General Manager, Evil Twin Brewing NYC

    I've personally never had an "Aha!" moment based on a bartender or brewer's suggestion, and to be honest most of the bartenders I talk to are dunces. Cheers to those who know their shit, but they're few and far between.

    Additionally I believe in the power of numbers regarding reviews. There will always be high raters and fads, and low raters, but in the end it all balances out to just about the right number.

    Has it taken a "human element out of craft beer"? Yes, but the brilliance of being able to transfer and receive information on a global scale via the internet way outweighs that.
     
  12. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (10,900) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    While I agree with this it's easier said than done...

    “The packaging and selling of unfinished beer. Many small breweries don’t have the necessary pasteurization capabilities in order to make a product stable after blending in various fruits and juices, so they package it in cans and warn the consumer to ‘keep it cold’ to avoid the cans exploding. For me, this is a trend I’d like to see fade away. Either buy a pasteurizer for your cans, or simply keep it on tap in your taproom where it can be controlled.” — Paul Wasmund, Head Brewer and Blender, Barrel Culture Brewing and Blending

    Does Paul Wasmund have a pasteurizer? The pasteurizers I've seen are bigger than some of the entire brewing space that some smaller breweries have.
     
  13. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (10,900) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    THIS ONE I 100% AGREE WITH...

    Seltzers in breweries. I think the trend will leave a negative impact on the integrity of the industry. I understand the desire to diversify, especially given stagnant sales across the industry of late, but hard seltzer is not the answer. I can get down with hazy IPAs, pastry stouts, and even beer cocktails. Seltzer is a quick copout for a lot of fledgling places. I’d like to see low-calorie beer or even nonalcoholic craft options fill the void. At least it’s still beer.” — Chris Gilmore, Brewer, Lone Tree Brewing Company
     
  14. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (10,900) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    I unfortunately believe that this goes on...

    “A trend making me sad, but I don’t see it ever going away, unfortunately, is the ouroboros of hype. People want to get a beer everyone’s talking about, stand in line for its release or pay scandalous money, sometimes more than eightfold the initial price, and of course they will rate it marvelous even if it’s just O.K. Nobody wants to admit putting a lot of effort, be it time or money or both, into just a good beer. So they call it exceptional and more people want it. And here we go again. This leaves out of the spectrum of attention thousands of really good breweries. Plus, there is enjoyment-versus-price ratio. Do you feel that beer was worth every penny you paid? Sometimes you pay a lot but feel cheated because the beer wasn’t as great as you expected it to be. And if someone pays way more than the brewery price and is not happy, all the discontent unfairly goes to the brewer, not to the secondary market trader in part driving the hype.” — Lana Svitankova, Speaker, Varvar Brew

    But in the end I also believe that with enough reviews everything comes into focus and the numbers turn out right. Are there beers out there that are over-rated because of this - yes! But those are beers that were limited and never got enough reviews to balance out the ratings.
     
  15. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (10,900) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    Mike Schatzel wins it with this one...

    “Was glitter beer ever a trend?” — Mike Shatzel, Co-Owner, Thin Man Brewery
     
  16. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (10,900) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    I wholeheartedly agree with Ethan on this one, there are too many breweries putting out lesser beers in the name of stretching the boundaries of creativity. Fried chicken beer from The Veil comes to mind. It shouldn't just be gimmick. If it hasn't made the beer better it's pointless in my mind...

    “Whole pastries, instead of constituent ingredients, going into stouts. You’re not even thinking about flavors anymore, you’re just trying to do something for Instagram.” — Ethan Buckman, Co-Owner and Head Brewer, Stickman Brews
     
  17. rozzom

    rozzom Champion (837) Jan 22, 2011 New York
    Trader

    Warning: post limit exceeded
     
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  18. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (10,900) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    Is this true? I've never heard that double dry-hopping was based exclusively on adding hops during active fermentation and then in secondary...

    “The liberal interpretation of double dry hopping, or DDH, is a pet peeve of mine. DDH is an actual process where the first dry hop is added during active fermentation and the second in secondary. But most people simply just dry hop multiple days. And also, double of what? Since most brewers don’t disclose their original dry hop rate, they’ve started a dry hopping arms race. I’ve seen as high as 15 pounds per barrel, and that’s just a waste! Only so much hop oil can dissolve in beer. At a certain point it’s literally throwing money down the drain.” — Morgan Clark Snyder Jr., Owner and Brewer, Buttonwoods Brewery

    I do agree that at a certain point it is just throwing money down the drain.
     
  19. rozzom

    rozzom Champion (837) Jan 22, 2011 New York
    Trader

    When I read that one I thought for sure it was going to be Augie Carton @augiecarton
     
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  20. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (10,900) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    Yeah, I don't know Augie but I can kind of see that.
     
  21. champ103

    champ103 Poo-Bah (4,461) Sep 3, 2007 Texas
    Society

    I don't take the best pictures, and this is after the head has died down a bit, but a brewery near me does this with their lagers. They just pour it slowly so they can get big foam and I personally get lots of aromatics. I like it, mostly because the beers are really good, and partly because they are in 20oz mugs. If the beer wasn't good, wouldn't care. This is Holler Brewing's Czech My Phone, and one of my favorites in the Houston area.

    [​IMG]
     
  22. Ten_SeventySix_Brewhouse

    Ten_SeventySix_Brewhouse Disciple (325) Jul 20, 2016 Indiana
    Society

    In Miami Concrete Beach was started by Boston Beer Company (I guess they’re still craft, but I feel like this fits the spirit), and Veza Sur was launched by AB InBev. I’m pretty sure neither of these places were ever independent.
     
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  23. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (10,900) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    I've only encountered the slow pour in Berlin, DE and Prague, CZ. It seems like they're trying to build a big head at first, which will then become dense and creamy as it's topped off slowly. Given the quality of the beers that I was drinking I found it fairly pointless. It is a thing though, and I've encountered it in several family homes in Berlin. They really dig that head. Does it improve the beer? I would say no, but it does feel a bit smoother in the end.
     
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  24. riegler

    riegler Initiate (88) Apr 30, 2015 Iowa

    This is one I totally agree with and bugs the shit out of me. Obviously if people like it and it is selling beer, I can't fault the brewers or even the people buying it. You like what you like. However breweries that are advertising that they used "X amount of donuts" for this, or "we had a birthday party and used all the leftover cake in this IPA" or "this fruit pie sour uses a bajillion pounds of graham cracker for the crust flavor" are just ridiculous. The use of Instagram has just exacerbated this situation. I compare it to the way dog food is advertised. They put a picture of a huge steak or roasted chicken on the package so the consumer buys it thinking, "wow those items are delicious, this dog food must be great. Fido will love this" when we all really know dog food probably tastes like shit. You're buying it based off of thinking the flavor literally aligns with that item on the packaging. People on Instagram see a huge pile of Jelly filled donuts going in a fermenter and they think "I love me some jelly filled donuts, I'd like one of those beers". When in actuality you're probably getting very little flavor out of that donut, and most likely just drinking a really sweet stout/IPA/Sour etc.
     
  25. M-Fox24

    M-Fox24 Savant (922) Mar 17, 2013 New Jersey
    Trader

    Another article that touches on the idea behind Slow Pour, with the mention of Pilsner Urquell's density level treatment:

    • “Charles Bamforth, the celebrated beer educator who is often called the Pope of Foam, says one of the best-known examples of a slow pour is Guinness. When pints of the dry Irish stout are poured according to the brewer’s suggestion, the whole process takes almost 2 minutes (119 seconds, to be exact), with the first half of that time going to build up a solid base of foam…’What happens when you produce a lot of foam is that you’re driving the proteins and bitter substances into the head, and when they get into the bubble wall, they interact and begin to stabilize the foam…If you don’t produce much foam in the first place, you’re not giving the molecules a chance to interact’”
    • “Pilsner Urquell …often promotes various pours with increasingly dense levels of foam. Each, tasted side by side by side, winds up tasting different from the others. Bamforth makes it clear that he hasn’t done scientific trials to see whether the flavor of a beer is altered if it receives the slow-pour treatment but notes that ‘the larger factor in play here is the foam and the psychology and beauty of it and the storyline the pour tells. Maybe there is a flavor difference; maybe it has lost a bit of its fizzy nature, and you get a mellower mouthfeel, depending on how much of the CO2 has dropped out of the solution. But, I think the visual triggers are more important than the taste ones’”
    • “From a nitro pour to traditional CO2 pours to even cask ale poured through a beer engine outfitted with a sparkler, the slow-poured beer is dominated by creaminess. For the uninitiated, the idea of having to wait for a beer to be poured, especially a lager, can be strange; but Suarez, the folks at Bierstadt, and others are usually ready with a response. And in the case of Suarez, it really takes only about a minute and a half for the beer to be poured and ready…’I think the slow pour speaks to the lizard brain [the most primitive part of the brain] of most people…Waiting a little bit builds the anticipation, gives them a special experience, and anyone who might have grumbled in the beginning is usually saying it’s pretty cool afterwards’”

    Patience for a Pint: The Art and Science of the Slow Pour
     
  26. dennis3951

    dennis3951 Savant (903) Mar 6, 2008 New Jersey

    For the last few years I think the worst trend in beer is beers with so much/many added flavors that they don't taste like beer. At some point a beer crosses a line and becomes a flavored malt beverage.
     
  27. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,311) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    I could be very wrong, but I couldn't imagine @augiecarton saying that. The quote from the brewer is stating that DDH was a defined thing that has been corrupted as opposed to just meaning different things to different brewers/circumstances/consumers.
     
  28. rozzom

    rozzom Champion (837) Jan 22, 2011 New York
    Trader

    sorry zid

    I just remember listening to multiple augie podcast episodes that zeroed in on basically - what the fuck does DDH actually mean. Reading the quote in depth you are right that there are nuances that make it appear wrong, nay, stupid to think it was Augie. But a high level skim made it appear like there was some overlap.

    lessons learned
     
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  29. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,311) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    I'm DDH sorry.
     
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  30. joerooster

    joerooster Initiate (36) May 15, 2018 Virginia

    That's what a lot of people want, can't blame the breweries for catering to the wants of their customers. Our most hyped local brewery puts adjuncts (fruit, coffee, milk sugar, etc) in what seems like 75% of their beers.

    Had a few goses recently that were so thick and fruity, it was like drinking a smoothie. Not for me but I definitely see the appeal.
     
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  31. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,098) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Society

    I was about to reply to Jim (@NeroFiddled) with a similar sentiment but you beat me to it.

    I would be willing to bet (Jim maybe you can share your thoughts here) that most brewers really do not want to throw whole donuts, fried chicken, etc. into their brews but there is a customer demand for these sorts of 'weird' beers. In a consumer/market based economy it is ultimately the customers that drive the products. As to why a beer consumer would desire to purchase a Fried Chicken beer is a mystery to me since I personally avoid drinking 'weird' beers. But I see enough 'weird' beers on brewery taproom menus and beer retailer shelves to know that there must be people out there buying this s@#$.

    Cheers!
     
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  32. Shanex

    Shanex Meyvn (1,339) Dec 10, 2015 France
    Moderator Society Trader

    This article is largely sound and worth a read. I would like to highlight the point of the General Manager of Evil Twin Brewing:

    I think ratings on apps and websites have taken some of the human element out of craft beer. While it’s great to have craft-beer fans excited about beer X, Y, or Z, I often see consumers relying too heavily on ratings to drive what they purchase as opposed to having a conversation with their bartenders and brewers. Most all of my beer ‘Aha!’ moments have come through connecting with someone and trying something completely new and unfamiliar. I think it’s our jobs as brewers and bartenders to help guide more of those experiences for craft-beer fans.” — Corey Gargiulo, General Manager...

    He is obviously right about the whole paragraph, it’s just the bartender part I slightly disagree with. I mean, I would love that EVERY bartender would know the deal, and have a convo with him or her. It’s not always true. I can’t blame them if they are very young and have only worked for some weeks or months, unfortunately the bartender or barmaid won’t always know how to advice the customer which is not an easy task anyway considering the variety of beers available and each and other personal preferences.

    Other than that, thanks for sharing the article.
     
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  33. augiecarton

    augiecarton Initiate (183) Oct 22, 2010 New Jersey
    Industry

    hahaha, to answer the original question no it doesn't mean that except to some it means exactly that. it really depends where your point of reference on the "DDH" time line starts. it can mean a lot of different things which means it means nothing. these days its safe to assume double dry hopped means hopped in a way to focus on the fruitier aromatic aspects of new world hops. but the minute you resolve that it will evolve again.
     
  34. augiecarton

    augiecarton Initiate (183) Oct 22, 2010 New Jersey
    Industry

    ^^^^
     
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  35. officerbill

    officerbill Disciple (303) Feb 9, 2019 New York
    Society

    Are “speakers” and interns considered Brewers?

    Carrying heavy loads for a lady is called being a gentleman

    But what about those of us who rarely go to bars, let alone bars with beer-knowledgable bartenders and buy the majority of their beer at grocery stores? Besides, a brewer is bound to boast about the brews brewed by that brewer's brewery.
     
  36. jonphisher

    jonphisher Aspirant (203) Aug 9, 2015 New Jersey
    Trader

    Gotta agree most with the ratings comments that were on there. Inflated rating based on justification of attaining a beer. So many great beers being ignored IMO, they’re just too easy to get I guess.
     
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  37. Snowcrash000

    Snowcrash000 Poo-Bah (1,967) Oct 4, 2017 Germany
    Moderator Society Trader

    What is perhaps most interesting about this article is the fact that not a single brewer mentioned the New England IPA, even though we can hardly go for a month on this forum without yet another thread deriding it as the worst thing to happen to beer ever.
     
  38. meefmoff

    meefmoff Defender (647) Jul 6, 2014 Massachusetts
    Society Trader

    Thanks for the info (and thx to the other folks who responded as well).

    Is it related to a Mliko pour by any chance? Notch brewing offers these though they use a funky kind of spigot that allows them to get the full glass of foam fairly quickly to my eye (so it's not really a "slow pour" the way others seem to be describing it).

    @AlcahueteJ posted a picture in the NE forum:

    https://www.beeradvocate.com/community/threads/notch-brewing-2019.602155/page-3#post-6494052
     
    #38 meefmoff, Jul 31, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2019
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  39. dennis3951

    dennis3951 Savant (903) Mar 6, 2008 New Jersey

    I don't disagree with what your saying just that it's a bad trend. Imperial Stouts are favorite style of mine. Sadly many brewers don't seem to be able to leave them as is. You end up with a drink that tastes like something would buy at an ice cream fountain.
     
  40. Domingo

    Domingo Poo-Bah (2,605) Apr 23, 2005 Colorado
    Society

    Just curious, how many American breweries are doing the slow pour thing?
    I know Bierstadt obviously is, but the only other time I've encountered that is with Coors' Barmen Pils. Are there many other places doing that or is someone just annoyed by Bierstadt in particular?
     
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