Time machine: you're in a craft beer bar, and its 1995. What do you drink?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by SCW, Jul 24, 2015.


You've been transported to July 1995 and these are the most popular styles. Which one do you go for?

Poll closed Oct 22, 2015.
  1. 1. Vienna Lager - e.g. Samuel Adams Boston Lager

    77 vote(s)
  2. 2. German Hefeweizen - Paulaner HefeWeizen, Hacker-Pschorr

    102 vote(s)
  3. 3. West Coast Amber - e.g. Mac and Jack's African Amber, Alaskan Amber, Boont Amber

    24 vote(s)
  4. 4. Brown Ale - e.g. Pete's Wicked Ale

    82 vote(s)
  5. 5. American Hefeweizen - e.g. Widmer Hefe, Pyramid Hefe

    22 vote(s)
  6. 6. Belgian Style - e.g. New Belgium Abbey, Celis White

    29 vote(s)
  7. 7. Smoked Beer - e.g. Alaskan Smoked Porter

    38 vote(s)
  8. 8. Scotch Ale - e.g. Bert Grant's Scotch Ale

    14 vote(s)
  9. 9. American Pale Ale - e.g. Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, Snake River Pale Ale

    280 vote(s)
  10. 10. Lambic - e.g. Liefmann's (Cantillon not widely distributed at the time, so not considered)

    15 vote(s)
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  1. singlespeed

    singlespeed Disciple (320) Sep 17, 2005 Delaware

    Sam Adams had a brewpub in Philly, back then. Triple Bock on tap....good times!
  2. PGD120

    PGD120 Initiate (0) Jan 20, 2015 New Jersey

    Same, I'd be 1 haha
    tylerstravis likes this.
  3. SlothB77

    SlothB77 Initiate (0) Dec 28, 2012 Virginia

    Were Sam Adams Old Fezziwig Ale, Chocolate Bock or Holiday Porter available in 1995?
  4. SlothB77

    SlothB77 Initiate (0) Dec 28, 2012 Virginia

    I think people got excited if they saw yuengling back then.
    DarthVorador and russpowell like this.
  5. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,860) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    You're thinking of 1985. Things were well established by 1995.
    yemenmocha likes this.
  6. aratcliffe

    aratcliffe Initiate (0) Jan 6, 2015 Kansas

    I voted for the Pales. I figured that's what 18 year-old me might go for, though I wasn't drinking at all at that point. By the next year, I was legal in Canada and getting high on their supply on Labatt Blue, thank you.
  7. CoverMePorkins

    CoverMePorkins Initiate (0) Sep 17, 2012 New Mexico

    In 1997 I discovered craft beer at The Vine in Iowa City, IA drinking a Pete's Wicked Ale after class. So that version of me would go with a Pete's. If I had a Delorean with a flux capacitor I would still order at Pete's along with a hefe, SNPA and some other German and Belgian imports.
    HectorB, russpowell and JackHorzempa like this.
  8. papposilenus

    papposilenus Poo-Bah (1,680) Jun 21, 2014 New Hampshire

    I voted for Sam Adams because, back around, I can't remember exactly, 1990? the latest 80's? in Boston and Cambridge Jim Koch was going bar to bar standing rounds of Sam. We used to stalk him. Even though he saw me probably four or five times a week, he never gave any indication of remembering who I was. To be fair, I put on a fair show of pretending I'd never tasted it before.
  9. mjryan

    mjryan Initiate (0) Dec 22, 2007 Minnesota

    Make their comeback?
  10. KingforaDay

    KingforaDay Crusader (720) Aug 5, 2010 New Jersey

    Reminds me of the Chuck Mead song "She got the ring, and I got the finger".
    On that list I'll take the SNPA myself. But would vote for Weihenstaphaner Vitus as a write in. That might even be near the top of my list today in 2015.
  11. DoctorD

    DoctorD Initiate (135) May 20, 2015 Maine

    I was in grad school living in NYC in 95 and the mid 90's marked the apex of my beer intake. It was all Pete's and Sierra Nevada (with an occasional Anchor when we could find it) because they were the best readily available options in the local bodegas in Manhattan.
  12. LakerLeith

    LakerLeith Initiate (0) Aug 11, 2013 California

    I was 4 years old in '95, but my first love (as far as craft goes) was SNPA for sure
  13. loafinaround

    loafinaround Initiate (0) Jul 16, 2011 New York

    I currently love stouts and IPAs... but I'm also a kraut, and my heart and history is with bock beers. I would have asked for a bock... if not present, then a brown ale or stout. At that time, I was always drinking something brown.

    so I voted for brown ale.
  14. kidrogers

    kidrogers Initiate (0) Apr 11, 2008 Illinois

    Definitely Sam Adams, outside of Petes or Sierra I don't recall any of the others, that and I was definitely underage, so really anything that wasn't an old style was a micro for me!
  15. SteveB24

    SteveB24 Initiate (0) Aug 29, 2013 New York

    I would drink so much of whatever i saw first that i black out, wake up back in 2015 and buy myself some more 4Beans.

    Plus. probably nothing, as i'd be about three years old, depending on what month i go back to.
    SCW likes this.
  16. SteveB24

    SteveB24 Initiate (0) Aug 29, 2013 New York

    I'll take your milk and buy you a soda, i'd be three.
    tylerstravis likes this.
  17. Bobbyk503

    Bobbyk503 Initiate (0) Jan 6, 2015 Oregon

    Before i saaw the cast your vote i said to myself Widmer Hefe, although i was 12. Still my first though........
  18. riverlen

    riverlen Initiate (0) Sep 16, 2009 Illinois

    There were craft bars in 1995? In '95 when I wanted flavor it was the imports, any of the German, English, Belgium and the occasional Guinness Extra Stout.
  19. johng

    johng Initiate (0) Feb 18, 2006 New York

    Shipyard Old Thumper ESB -- used to drink a lot of that.
    Ipswich Dark Ale -- damn, I loved that beer. Too bad it is in retirement.
    New Amsterdam Amber Ale
  20. russpowell

    russpowell Poo-Bah (10,697) May 24, 2005 Arkansas
    Society Trader

    Drank a few of those too...
    HeartofMiami likes this.
  21. russpowell

    russpowell Poo-Bah (10,697) May 24, 2005 Arkansas
    Society Trader

    Most of friends didn't refer to it as microbrew. They reffered to it as your " nasty over-priced, fancy, candy-assed beer ". Sadly, a few still feel that way, more for me, still!
    JackHorzempa and cavedave like this.
  22. russpowell

    russpowell Poo-Bah (10,697) May 24, 2005 Arkansas
    Society Trader

    That's about the time it got down to North Carolina. I remember that being thing more because of price than anything else.
    TongoRad likes this.
  23. icetrauma

    icetrauma Initiate (0) Sep 7, 2004 Texas

    I would go with Pete's Wicked Ale but Shiner Bock was my go to back then.
  24. JerzDevl2000

    JerzDevl2000 Poo-Bah (3,903) Oct 7, 2005 New Jersey

    Iced Tea - I've just graduated high school and won't turn 21 for another two years. It's probably the first of 500+ times that I'll get carded...
  25. jesskidden

    jesskidden Poo-Bah (2,148) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    For those saying there were no "craft beer bars" in 1995 - coincidentally, that is the same year this 162 pg book (obviously modeled on CAMRA's) was copyrighted and published by the Craft Brewers Guild. As noted in the title, it only covers the NY metro area (5 boroughs / Long Island / Westchester and Rockland counties).
    Numerous other similar guides also existed around the country and such bars were included in the early "beer newspapers" of the era, as well.

    Also, the various editions of Michael Jackson's Pocket Guides of the 1980s and 1990s included a "Where to Drink" section for each US region (East, Midwest, West, South).

    The "craft beer bar" I visited the most in that period was The Old Bay, New Brunswick, NJ (< but don't judge the 1990s version by current reviews), of which, in 1998, a local homebrewing club wrote:
    It should be noted that those "25 taps" actually outnumbered the number of seats at the bar at the time (which is inside a Cajun restaurant) - I'd sure never seen that before. The draught beers I specifically remember having there (many others long forgotten) are Anchor Old Foghorn and Reissdorf Kölsch (in the latter case, 'cause Tom and I killed the keg, we wound up with a couple of the 0.2l glasses which was the tradition - at least, of the afternoon bartender:wink:). [​IMG]

    They were one of the first US locations that carried (occasionally) Fullers' cask beer, so I had one of those at the time but which one is lost in time - my usual first comment upon sitting down and being handed the beer menu was "So, what's on the handpump?". Many other US craft beers were consumed there - Stoudt's even brewed a couple of house beers for them.

    Thought I had some OB menus from that period, but all the ones I can find are from 2000. :slight_frown: Lots of Heavyweight, DFH, Victory, Weyerbacher in those.
    TongoRad, russpowell and BJC like this.
  26. Dweedlebug

    Dweedlebug Disciple (346) Feb 28, 2012 Pennsylvania

    I'd actually be drinking a Sam Smith Oatmeal Stout, just like I did back in 1995.

    By the way, big surprise that "pale ale" is running away with the vote tally.
  27. BeerVikingSailor

    BeerVikingSailor Savant (954) Nov 19, 2009 Ohio

    Around my area, in the mid-90's - I would have been drinking some Great Lakes Dortmunder, some Liberty St Brewing DragonSlayer, and other local brews, along with the classics like SNPA, SA Boston Lager, Anchor Steam, Liberty Ale and Anchor Porter
    russpowell likes this.
  28. BeerVikingSailor

    BeerVikingSailor Savant (954) Nov 19, 2009 Ohio

    Around NE OH. there were not too many (if any) "craft beer bars", there were some bars that sold micro / import beers (they were not called "craft" then), and some locals that had decent tap lists.....I would argue that hefe's (German or American) are not in need of a "comeback" and are already quite popular, as are lambics and some of the other styles in the poll....SA Boston Lager and SNPA are and will continue to be "popular", for many drinkers, these are gateway beers; despite the fact that many on BA rarely drink them, as they are too busy chasing the next big hopped up brew or some BBA whatever.....perspective!
    SCW likes this.
  29. bubseymour

    bubseymour Poo-Bah (3,173) Oct 30, 2010 Maryland
    Society Trader

    Yeah, that model probably isn't the best plan for most beer nerd demographics (90's styles of craft only?), but I actually see so many new startups (mostly by rich middle aged/older men) in mid-Atlantic area here that seem to always start with flagship lineups of similar styles that were prevailent in the 90's. Brown Ales, Pale Ales, Ambers and Wheat beers. Easy and cheap to make I'm guessing. Perhaps you'll also see a Belgian blonde or some of the other more pedestrian styles as well. When they venture into bigger Belgian, DIPAs or barrell aged anything, most aren't done very good. Only a few diamonds in the rough.
  30. bubseymour

    bubseymour Poo-Bah (3,173) Oct 30, 2010 Maryland
    Society Trader

    Were there craft bars in the 1990s? A few microbrew pubs if that counts, but don't recall craft centric taverns/ bars. Maybe in the big cities, but they probably focused more on the imports on tap and bottles from Belgium, England, Germany over a wide variety of American craft offerings.
  31. BJC

    BJC Initiate (180) Nov 9, 2002 New Jersey

    Spent many an afternoon at the Old Bay.

    My wife and I were in Cape May. She was shopping. I was killing time looking at New Jersey magazine and read an article about the Vernon Valley Brewery which stated that their beers were available in New Brunswick. I called them up and found out it was the Old Bay.

    Went there within the week and enjoyed an amber lager, a pale lager and a pale bock as well as meeting Jack, Tony and Rich, three guys who were into beer as much as me. I became a regular. Six months later, I strolled in and saw the entire Sierra Nevada line up available including the Pale Bock. It was like being in Oregon or Washington or San Francisco.

    I vividly remember the cask Fullers ESB in 1994 when Colonel Fuller was there and still have the Fullers’ imperial pint they gave out to select customers. Many a good pint and I often met people who traveled far to visit the Old Bay. (I traveled 4.5 miles.) I haven’t been there for a while. You can’t go home again.
    jesskidden likes this.
  32. jesskidden

    jesskidden Poo-Bah (2,148) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    What's the difference between a "microbrew pub" and a "craft beer bar" ? Wouldn't a "microbrew pub " simply be a pub that primarily sold microbrews?

    Unless you meant (no space) "microbrewpub "? The Association of Brewers (one of the predecessors to today's Brewers Association) said there 502 brewpubs operating in the US in 1995.
    #232 jesskidden, Jul 27, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2015
  33. jparizo

    jparizo Initiate (0) Jan 16, 2011 Indiana

    Sophmore in high school. We would drink Sierra Nevada Pale Ale and Harpoon at the bar and had no idea what craft beer was.
    Sam Adams was too heavy for weekend drinking, so we stuck to Bud Light and OE 40s/64s.
  34. Zonk

    Zonk Initiate (0) Dec 2, 2014 New Jersey

    Aroma and memory definitely have a strong link. The other day I opened a SN Bigfoot which my wife smelled from across the room. She said "That smells like that Bigfoot beer." The last time she has smelled it was from a snifter at the The Old Bay in New Brunswick right around 1995.

    Count that as the beer from 1995 I would reach for. Maybe even one brewed in '95.
    SCW likes this.
  35. lillitnn92

    lillitnn92 Initiate (0) Aug 22, 2009 Virginia

    Sorry, but if I'm going back to '95, I'm not caring about craft beer, I'm telling my dumbass not to get married.
    russpowell and FarmerTed like this.
  36. Wolfhead

    Wolfhead Initiate (0) Sep 1, 2009 Illinois

    I would have to go with Pete's back then
    Seeing as I am in a time machine, I would certainly have some current Sixpoint brews in the trunk and pour them into a solo cup as I wouldn't want to break the space time continuum
  37. Jason

    Jason Founder (8,659) Aug 23, 1996 Massachusetts
    Staff Moderator Fest Crew Society

    No beer bars in Savannah GA that year, the cap had not been popped yet either so all beer was 6% or less. 90%+ of my beer consumption was homebrew.
    cavedave, Kylo76 and russpowell like this.
  38. Kylo76

    Kylo76 Aspirant (275) Aug 29, 2014 Colorado

    I was drinking a lot of Pete's back then and the occasional Sierra.
  39. horsehockey

    horsehockey Initiate (0) Jul 31, 2014 Illinois

    I probably would have chosen a stout of some kind back then. I really liked Schlafly Oatmeal Stout.
  40. bubseymour

    bubseymour Poo-Bah (3,173) Oct 30, 2010 Maryland
    Society Trader

    Microbrew pub = a restaurant where they brew their own beer on site.
    Craft bar = a more typical bar/tavern establishment that has numerous craft beers on tap. Not house brews. My point is that I rarely recall these back then, unless most of their tap handles were imports from Europe.
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