Waiting in Line for Beer

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by woodychandler, Feb 23, 2016.

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  1. SammyJaxxxx

    SammyJaxxxx Poo-Bah (2,326) Feb 23, 2012 New Jersey

    I don't agree with most of this statement.
    "They're turning craft beer into something it never was and never should be: unrelatable, unaffordable, and unwelcoming. Beer is inclusive by nature, but lines only exist to exclude. With each line stood and each trophy beer captured, they threaten the community's fundamentally democratic nature."

    However, the part of the line that makes it ecclusionary is the part of the line that is there to supply the secondary market. I can imagine that a line becomes very unwelcoming when you are surrounded by people who are there, not for the love of the beer, but are there because they can triple their money.

    It is my position that the authors complaints are actually about the secondary market. The lines are simply, at least partially, the product of that secondary market
  2. WesMantooth

    WesMantooth Poo-Bah (3,057) Jan 8, 2014 Ohio
    Society Trader

    I have driven 160 miles and stood outside in miserable weather in the wee hours of the morning for Reds Opening Day tickets back in the days before my seasons tickets and the internet, so waiting awhile for beer doesn't bother me occasionally. I also drive all over Ohio for limited/special releases. It is about the experience that includes meeting/reuniting with other Ba's and old friends as much as the beer.

    That being said, I have no problem with people questioning the practice. I am a bit hypocritical because I think the people that camp out for Black Friday specials are crazy, but to me that is because I look at it from a money/savings standpoint. Some people just like the chase/experience. My wife loves shopping in the middle of the night (aka people watching). As long as you realize that it is just a material item at the end of the day and don't treat people like shit because of it, to each their own.

    The only problem I had with the article is the "I will be the guy over here drinking a Left Hand Milk Stout I bought at the gas station, laughing at you clowns waiting for bombers". I love LH as much as anyone, in fact, now I am craving one. However, I will be the one laughing, manically, while I drink my Jackie O's Bourbon Barrel Champion Ground. There is a reason some beers are less available than others, and it's not always hype.
  3. DrStiffington

    DrStiffington Meyvn (1,074) Oct 27, 2010 New Jersey

    I don't tell people what to do or not do. But I don't wait in these crazy long lines for hours for these special release beers. I do have the opinion that the "arrive hours early and line up for special release" mentality is part of the negative side of the beer industry because it does bring a lot of the muling, hoarding, line-jumping, finger pointing, angry Facebook posting, and most importantly, makes the next release more likely to have a longer line and hence the cycle continues and grows. I hope to live to see the days that any time a beer is released, we can just go to a store or brewery and buy it, special release or not, take it home and enjoy it. But that's me.
    jrnyc and Jaycase like this.
  4. Jaycase

    Jaycase Meyvn (1,357) Jan 13, 2007 Illinois

    I agree with you here. The author definitely missed on a big reason causing the extremeness of lines (perhaps not necessarily the lines themselves but the length and how long in advance they form these days) and it is due to resellers/traders.
  5. socon67

    socon67 Poo-Bah (2,310) Jun 18, 2010 New York

    There is a reality now that certain beers that are limited will require waiting in line to purchase. You can be a craft beer enthusiast and forego this practice. There are plenty of incredible beers that are readily available. For some there is the need to seek out limited releases and these people will wait in line. Not much different than movie premieres, restaurant openings, or Black Friday sales. The line waiting does not "ruin" craft beer culture.
    HuskyHawk likes this.
  6. chrisjws

    chrisjws Champion (873) Dec 3, 2014 California

    I don't do much line waiting, but I'm usually pretty pragmatic about it. When I got Pliny the Younger last Saturday I brought my homework and got all of it done while I waited in line. Weeks ago I waited in line to get some Bourbon County rare. It was a week day so I brought my laptop and used the place's wifi to work as I sat and waited. Both times I met some awesome people and made some great friends while I was at it. I was productive, I met great people, I drank awesome beer and I generally had a great time.

    The hype trains do annoy me and I try not to contribute too much to it. That's the main reason I barely trade anymore. The latest trendy beer always trades so high it's ridiculous. I'll keep the stuff I can get and enjoy it rather than trading it at ridiculous ratios to try to get a taste of the the latest turbid IPA or annual RIS release. I'll wait in a line, but I keep it within reason. I don't do it to tick, I don't do it to get something to sell or trade. I do it because I enjoy the beer, I enjoy the culture, and I have ways of using that line time in a productive manner.
  7. RBassSFHOPit2ME

    RBassSFHOPit2ME Meyvn (1,056) Mar 1, 2009 California

    Author of article is "hey, check me out, I'm better than you cuz I have an opinion." Well, friend, check YOU out...

    I, for one am willing to wait in line for 30oz opposed to the same line elsewhere for 5oz.
  8. Chcshammonde

    Chcshammonde Devotee (499) Sep 20, 2014 California

    I agree the article is stupid. It's just some writer targeting a very small segment of the craft beer world, and patronizing it just for the purposes of writing an article.

    I haven't personally waited in line at a beer release, but then again, there aren't any breweries near me that have lines for releases. It's only Russian River, and I haven't made the time to do PtY otherwise I for sure would have stood in that line. Hoping next year I can make it.

    A new brewery, Alpha Acid, did post a picture of a line at their BA stout release, but I mean it wasn't crazy long. Probably like 40 people or so.

    I am expecting possible lines and craziness when SARA does the West Ashley though.
  9. HokiesandBeer

    HokiesandBeer Initiate (0) Jan 10, 2013 Pennsylvania

    If you want to wait in line for beer feel free....I'll never do it though. I just don't get it. I guess I'm not BA enough.
  10. cavedave

    cavedave Poo-Bah (2,971) Mar 12, 2009 New York
    Society Trader

    Hey, how come I see all you guys who say they will never wait in line in every line I wait on?
  11. drtth

    drtth Poo-Bah (4,006) Nov 25, 2007 Pennsylvania

    You have an active imagination? :-)
  12. NYR-Zuuuuc

    NYR-Zuuuuc Disciple (335) Jan 1, 2013 Connecticut

    What's wrong with being in Maine? I enjoy visiting ME.
    ArsMoriendiOU818 likes this.
  13. dennis3951

    dennis3951 Meyvn (1,011) Mar 6, 2008 New Jersey

    To each their own, if you enjoy waiting on line with other BA's more power to you. I am sure I would enjoy all the beers in the top 250 (except the sours). I'm also sure I wouldn't enjoy them much if any more from the other top beers in their style.
  14. Pisthetaerus

    Pisthetaerus Initiate (130) Dec 3, 2014 Connecticut

    That's my take on it too. It's an unfortunate byproduct of success and limited capacity to make a particular beer. If I want the beer, I'll wait in line.

    But at the same time I think some people here either have just had consistently positive experiences or are looking back with rose tinted glasses on their experiences with beer lines. They can be a bit of an asshole magnet with people double dipping or coming in with a parade of mules etc. etc.
    cavedave likes this.
  15. richobrien

    richobrien Devotee (470) Dec 29, 2013 California

    I think the constant examination of what people do in craft beer is far more decisive than (most) of their actions. Much more time being spent worrying about how others enjoy their hobby. Seems like wasted energy to me.
  16. cavedave

    cavedave Poo-Bah (2,971) Mar 12, 2009 New York
    Society Trader

    There have been well discussed positive and negative experiences over the years for sure. I have had many positive and only one really negative. I grew up waiting in lines to buy Dead tickets, so lines aren't something new to me, and I might be more forgiving and patient than others.

    Funny to see some comments in this thread about supermarkets versus waiting in line at the brewery, when flavors of the day like Grimm, which distributes and has no brewery, are blowing up to the point people are actually waiting in lines at supermarkets.
    Pisthetaerus likes this.
  17. HeavyDandtheGirls

    HeavyDandtheGirls Aspirant (218) Mar 7, 2014 Massachusetts

    I have waited in line for beer twice. Both times at Treehouse on growler fill days.

    First time I waited I was passing through the area before open and decided to stop, it was a nice day, I dropped a cooler off in the line, hopped on a conference call and once that ended shot the shit with folks in line. Little over a 2hr wait because I got there before open due to timing of my travel and that put me in the 1st 20 people or so.
    Second time I was with co-workers and we arrived after opening and waited over 3hrs, we were 150 something in line, if I was alone I wouldn't have waited.

    Been to Treehouse multiple times on can only Wednesdays with little or no waiting in line, in and out in 15 minutes or so.

    I seem to always hit Trillium right and have never waited in a line, 15 minutes in and out.

    A wait to me is over 30 minutes.

    Would I wait in line again? If it was on my terms like the first scenario of me being early and then having no real wait once they opened, sure. Second scenario with 150+ people in front of me probably not, time is too valuable to me.

    Wound I wait in line for a chance to have 1 pour of some super rare beer, no way.
  18. jvgoor3786

    jvgoor3786 Poo-Bah (1,925) May 28, 2015 Arkansas
    Society Trader

    I have a hard time taking a "published" article seriously when the author used profanity. You can't make your argument without it and actually sound intelligent? Just me. I'm not offended by it; I just feel it's out of place and takes away from the credibility.
    Pisthetaerus likes this.
  19. dennis3951

    dennis3951 Meyvn (1,011) Mar 6, 2008 New Jersey

    That's true and if the Breweries sold their beer for what the market will bear the would be much smaller and might even vanish.
  20. dennis3951

    dennis3951 Meyvn (1,011) Mar 6, 2008 New Jersey

    Of course once their is a "dramatically increase access to their beers" many BA's will no longer covet them.
  21. KingCobra686

    KingCobra686 Initiate (129) Aug 13, 2014 Connecticut

    Nothing wrong with Maine. The timing is just real tough for that release for anyone out of state..
  22. KingCobra686

    KingCobra686 Initiate (129) Aug 13, 2014 Connecticut

    Yeah you can't take top 250 too seriously. All the beers on it are amazing, but like you said, there are tons of other amazing beers out there too.
  23. HuskyHawk

    HuskyHawk Disciple (396) Jun 5, 2014 Massachusetts

    Fantatstic! More for me. I've never even managed to get their non HT beers. Looking forward to some Focal Banger. For the record...I think the place will be mobbed.
  24. Mcj6986

    Mcj6986 Initiate (147) Dec 14, 2013 Ohio

    You must be a neckbeard...
  25. BearsOnAcid

    BearsOnAcid Savant (952) Mar 17, 2009 Washington

    Back in the day, the beer people stood in line for was actually rare. Now everyone just stands in line for the same cans of IPA every week.
  26. RLVineh

    RLVineh Initiate (139) Jun 21, 2014 California

    Do it, Don't do it, who cares? I personally don't mind it, but it all depends on the beer and the time. I will not camp out overnight, but if the line is 3-4 hours, sure why not. I would much rather do that and ensure that I get a bottle, than miss out on a bottle due to BPT. Nothing annoys me more than being beat to a bottle from one of my local breweries (that I support all year long) by some twat from out of state. Looking at you Alesmith:angry:!!!!
  27. stonermouse

    stonermouse Devotee (478) Aug 16, 2006 Massachusetts

    I perform a time value : product value calculation. I've been to most of the big boys in New England, and none of them are worth the wait times anymore. To me personally. Because I try to place a realistic value on my time, and 20-60 mins of my time is worth more than the result, which is decently yummy beer and a much lighter wallet.

    I work long hours, have a wife and 4 kids, a house that needs lots of work... Those who have fewer outside time demands may value their free time differently. I just can't justify it anymore.
  28. jageraholic

    jageraholic Disciple (338) Sep 16, 2009 Massachusetts

    I really wish there was beer on the shelf in my town that tasted as good as Tree House but there isn't so every now and then when I have enough time, I venture out to the brewery and wait in line to buy their beer.
    SammyJaxxxx likes this.
  29. kodt

    kodt Defender (619) Mar 6, 2013 Illinois

    "If no-one lined up for beer, then I could just walk up and buy all the rare stuff without a hassle like 10 years ago before it was so popular."
    Corrado42 and Dando274 like this.
  30. ThomasMetal75

    ThomasMetal75 Initiate (0) Jun 15, 2009 Massachusetts

    I stood in line to get a growler of Trillium Congress Street IPA. It was worth it taste wise for sure, but I'll never do it again. This was the first time I had been to the brewery, so I didn't know any better. But now I'll never stand in line again for it. But I'm glad to drink it whenever I possibly can as it's a true IPA lover's beer. I still have 1 of 2 cans left of some Heady Topper my father's former boss gave him for me. I am glad I didn't wait in any lines to get it. Because there are (to me at least) just as good of IPAs out there as Heady Topper most of us around the country can get. The ones that come to mind are Sierra Nevada Hoptimium and Victory Dirtwolf. And now I'm really starting to like Revolution's Anti-Hero IPA. So I don't feel the need to ever get in line for Heady Topper, but I do understand 100% why people adore it. And I do as well. But I don't think it's worth a wait in line.
  31. Leebo

    Leebo Initiate (192) Feb 7, 2013 Massachusetts

    I find Trillium on the shelf these days. As well as Singlecut, Alpine, Night shift and many others.
  32. ISpendTooMuchOnBeer

    ISpendTooMuchOnBeer Initiate (105) Oct 29, 2015 Illinois

    To those saying they would never wait in line or never have: BS
    To those who criticize those who wait in line: who cares? it's their money, time, effort, etc., it does not affect you
    To those who wait in line: I've done it to get a beer I really wanted at a fair retail price. That's why most others do too. So what?
    To those who make others wait longer in line or miss out because they are there to make a profit: that's what is F'd up and negative for the community.

    Overall, this subject is nauseating. Do whatever you please as long as you are not hurting someone else in the process.
    LeRose, sosbombs and MS22 like this.
  33. jageraholic

    jageraholic Disciple (338) Sep 16, 2009 Massachusetts

    Those would definitely qualify for me and also aren't in my area (Western Mass), except for maybe the Alpine. They are good, but have more of the bitterness for me and aren't as fruit forward. Also love the mouthfeel of a lot of tree house and trillium beers.
  34. McMatt7

    McMatt7 Disciple (348) Jul 30, 2014 Pennsylvania

    I've never waited in line for a special release or tapping or anything. I ALMOST got in line for a 4oz pour of CBS once but i didn't feel like waiting in line, so i didn't, and i didn't get any CBS. :slight_frown:

    What's bullshit about that? :slight_smile:
  35. KevinBrink

    KevinBrink Initiate (39) Apr 13, 2015 New Jersey

    If I owned a brewery, particularly in the case of those that release their "Rare Beers" at the brewery and have crazy lines, I would just not announce a beers release, I would just throw it out for sale on a random day with no announcement made and not deal with the hype, let the people who were going to come to the brewery anyway get the first crack. All you get for appeasing people who want a "system" in place for a release is some happy customers and a bunch of people who say you did it wrong.
    UrbanCaveman likes this.
  36. Sturgeon83

    Sturgeon83 Disciple (313) Mar 11, 2015 Kentucky

    You guys would really be bummed about the lines for bourbon.

    I don't agree with a lot of the things that people do in the name of beer, but I don't have to do them, so I don't. Waiting in line is something that never bothered me.
    thesherrybomber likes this.
  37. UrbanCaveman

    UrbanCaveman Zealot (570) Sep 30, 2014 Illinois

    I don't wait in lines, but I've bloviated about the personal whys behind that a fair bit already. It boils down to not enjoying any specific beer so much more than other beers I can buy off shelves that I feel the extra expenditure is worth it.

    I do count time as expenditure, so time spent waiting in line for a beer adds what I value my time at to the cost of the beer. If the cost subsequently outweighs any enjoyment I feel I will get out of the beer, bearing in mind that I tend to be disappointed in rare/hyped beer which is not literally orders of magnitude better than any beer that doesn't involve waiting, then I don't bother.

    If I enjoyed waiting in lines with friends, meeting strangers, and/or bottle shares, that might affect my cost-benefit analysis. However, given my palate and beer preferences, some of the camaraderie aspect and quite a lot of the bottle share aspect are net negatives as well. Ah, the joys of being in a niche within a niche by genetic luck.

    Other people can wait in line all they want. I'll be the guy who's still buying doppelbocks left over from the early spring production runs all year round.
    KevinBrink likes this.
  38. jtodeasa

    jtodeasa Initiate (126) Nov 11, 2015 Connecticut

    I love waiting in line. One of the best bonding experiences ever is enduring something unpleasant, and I've made some really good friends while waiting in line at NEBCO and TH.
    sosbombs likes this.
  39. rgordon

    rgordon Meyvn (1,076) Apr 26, 2012 North Carolina

    I could not agree more. The last few times that we went to Asheville and went to Wicked Weed, we just walked in, had great burgers, perfect service, and great beer -as an aside on service, I'll just add... (I loved the big pot of stew in Yugoslavia with the flies that I ignored because we were very hungry). You and I are relative contemporaries and I might have waited for Steppenwolf for just a bit! I think that I saw every group but them.
  40. dennis3951

    dennis3951 Meyvn (1,011) Mar 6, 2008 New Jersey

    I waited in line for concert tickets also. Didn't really care about the concert, just wanted to score with a redhead.
    SammyJaxxxx likes this.
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