populist things and impossible questions

I swear to Crom that as soon as I clean out some kegs and get a day to myself there will be another brew day writeup, citizens – maybe even some how-to pieces – but for now, some gentle pontificating.

Recently, Collin at Brewed for Thought wrote about the problematic notion of “best” breweries or beers, as promulgated by those “Top 10” clickbait lists you see everywhere:

“The whole reason we have 3000 breweries in this country is because we, the beer drinking public, have rejected the Highlander, there-can-be-only-one conception of breweries.”

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recap: NHC 2014

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To be honest, I worked a lot and didn’t get out much, but what I did see of this year’s National Homebrew Conference was great – a little more intimate than Philly, I picked up a couple new books to read; there was lots of interesting homebrew (see beet juice Berliner Weisse in the slideshow, and a 14.5% October beer shared at the banquet) and a lively local beer scene. It was a privilege to meet some of you blog readers in meatspace and share a beer.

(tiny) bubbles in my beer, pt. 4

“Should the best stay small?” was the title of the response piece to the New York Times article. It was in reference to Hill Farmstead Brewery capping production at 5000 barrels a year; and it wasn’t a rhetorical so much as an unanswered question.

Far be it from me to deny the Interwebs more vitally important bloviation on the sacred cows of craft beer: onward, citizens. It’s answerin’ time. Continue reading

bubbles in my beer, pt. 3

via wearethelastbeatniksfiles.wordpress.com

“For several years now, beer hijacking has been an issue for small and independent commercial brewers. They’ve been working hard to differentiate themselves from very large brewing companies that offer special beers and would prefer that beer drinkers believe that their beers come from small and independent breweries. Speaking for myself, this is a turnoff. The beer is probably great quality, but the marketing is deceptive and erodes the perception of credibility.”

“I’m the only thing standing between the death of Irish music and … and … the life of Irish music. Hss hss hss hss!”

One of these is a quote from an op-ed piece in the New Brewer on the need for a clear, commonly-understood definition of “craft beer,” and the other is a quote from the Shane MacGowan biopic If I Should Fall from Grace. Continue reading