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Archive for December, 2012

Beer and Music

I had to laugh when I read the comment from Rod Herstich on my previous blog – Craft vs Crafty. He wrote, “Why can’t we all just get along?” Ironically, the day before his comment, I had started writing a new blog and it began like this – With my last blog on Craft vs Crafty, I felt like the Rodney King of brewers. “Can’t we all just get along?!?” (Way to read my mind, Rod!)

Seriously, I am a huge supporter of the Brewer’s Association (BA). They, along with their predecessor, the Association of Brewers (AOB), have always worked hard to educate the public about craft beer. With BA events like the Great American Beer Festival, the World Beer Cup, the Craft Brewers Conference, and SAVOR, and the many opportunities the BA provides their members to attend events put on by other organizations such as the NBWA or the Nightclub and Bar Tradeshow, the BA has played a pivotal role in the growth of craft beer.

So to Charlie, Bob, Paul, Julia and everyone else at the Brewer’s Association, I say, “Great job! Terrapin, and many other breweries would not be where we are today, without your help. Thank you.” (more…)

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Craft vs. Crafty?

If you’ve been paying any attention to the world of “craft” beer the last few days, you’ve seen the Brewer’s Association’s latest message regarding “real” craft beer vs. “faux” craft beer. According to the BA, a “true” craft brewer produces less than 6 million barrels per year, uses “traditional” ingredients, and is less than 25% owned by a non craft brewer (i.e. anyone that produces more than 6 million barrels or whose flagship uses “non-traditional” ingredients).

Theoretically, these three criteria are all OK. Especially when one considers them as what they really are. They are an attempt by a trade organization, the Brewer’s Association, to define their clientele. Taken in that light, no big deal. The BA is trying to organize the chaotic beer world in a way that allows them to draw a line and say, “These are the companies that are part of our organization. These are the breweries who we, as a trade organization, represent.”

So far, so good. This rough division has been the status-quo (with some occasional, random grumbling) for the past few years. Everyone knew where they fit into the BA definition and they dealt with it as a minor annoyance.

But now the BA is trying to reserve the term “craft beer” to only their members. The BA is  saying, “We have defined our constituents; we know exactly who we represent. By the way Mr. Consumer, here is a list of breweries that we have decided can not be members of the BA. These non members are “faux” craft brewers. Don’t support them; they are not “true” craft brewers.” In my opinion, this was a huge mistake. (more…)

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Hey there; guest poster here!

A few weeks ago, John and Spike spent a few days in sunny Florida as the Special Guest Brewers of Honor for the 22nd annual Sunshine Challenge 2012. Sunshine Challenge is a two-day homebrew festival and competition organized by the Central Florida Home Brewers. As the Guest Brewers of Honor, John and Spike not only got to enjoy the festival but got to lead a seminar for the homebrewers in attendance. As part of their talk, they reminisced on their days as homebrewers before running a production brewery was even an idea.

And look how far they’ve come!  (more…)

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