Does the craft beer “revolution” need to end?

This morning, as I was perusing the beer news to find the choicest bits to bring you on the Ale Evangelist Show Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/AleEvangelistShow), I was slapped with the following headline:

“Give me cheap beer or give me sobriety. Just stop this craft beer ‘revolution’.”

A couple of notes about this article from The Guardian. First off, I recognize that the author is writing from Australia, and that her beer scene is not likely my beer scene.  That said, Australia has really benefited from the homebrew revolution in the States from the mid-80’s. If the land down under is anything like the good ol’ U.S. of A., homebrewers there drove the craft beer revolution.  Secondly, I fully admit I have never had an Australian Craft Beer, and know nothing about how they taste.

What is truly frustrating about this article is the author’s assumption that “compost heap flavored” craft beer is the only beer out there. A quick search on good ol’ American Google, turns up this article from a couple years ago: Forget Foster’s; These Are Australia’s Most Popular Beers.

That author is complaining about the lack of flavor in Australia’s most popular beers. The problem with the craft beer hater’s article is that she has a choice. Don’t like ultra-flavored craft beer, don’t drink it.  If Australia is anything like the U.S., there are light lagers aplenty.  I certainly can’t swing a dead Clydesdale without hitting taps for 13 or 14 of them here.

Listen, craft beer may not be for everyone. (GASP!) Yeah, I said it, not everyone is going to have a craft beer epiphany. See, for craft beer to take hold in someone’s heart, they have to be open to it, and not everyone is.  In some cases, one might have to acquire a taste for an aspect of beer they don’t particularly like at first, and many aren’t open to that. That’s fine too. But in that case, don’t knock craft beer, and claim that the “revolution”, (and in the U.S., said revolution is about 36 years old…) needs to end. Those who enjoy the beers you say “taste bad”, are “mouth-puckering, overly flavoursome”, and “taste like licking a compost-heap” disagree, and strongly!

Her other point is that craft beer is too expensive.  I’ll agree wholeheartedly here, and this is one reason I’m more likely to buy bottles and enjoy at home rather than go out: $6 or more for a pint is kind of ridiculous when I can get a 6-pack of the same beer for a couple bucks more. Yeah, I said it…craft beer is too expensive. I just shelled out $20 for a bottle of Barrel-Aged Narwhal Imperial Stout from Sierra Nevada. That hurt the ol’ beer budget. I understand why the Barrel Aged Narwhal is more expensive than other bottles on the shelf, sure, but should it be $20? Clearly the market will bear it, but especially when drinking out, craft beer is way too expensive.

Having said all of this, the author’s complaint is that the craft beer culture is taking over all the pubs where she likes to go. Guess what, no one is forcing those pubs to serve those types of beer except market pressure. Which means that her attitude is clearly not the majority. Change pubs or stay at home, but don’t call for an end to a culture that is the only growing segment of the beer market. That’s just petty.

(Source Article: Give Me Cheap Beer or Give Me Sobriety. Just stop this craft beer revolution)

What’s up with the Ale Evangelist Show?

Good morning, good afternoon, and good evening, my friends! I wanted to announce that this long-neglected blog and Twitter account of mine is in the process of being converted. No, I’m not changing my mind on whether the good news of good booze should be spread. Rather, I’m changing the way in which I will be doing it. The details? Read on! Continue reading

Missionary Work: Brewing this Saturday!

Most of my ale evangelism, it seems, has been focused on the brewing aspect of my life, lately. I’m ok with this. You see, if you’re willing to live the life and go through so much trouble to create something that you can go to the store and buy for less than $10 for a 6-pack, there must be something to this stuff that people just aren’t getting, right? After all, how many people do you know who would take 7 hours out of their Saturday, get a system for chilling their beer down to lagering termps, and work that hard to brew something like Budweiser? The answer? Not too many. Simply investing the time and money in the hobby is enough to tell someone how passionate you are about this beer. Some people will shake their head at you. Others will start to wonder if there’s something about this “beer” stuff that they’ve been missing for all this time.
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Pastoral Counseling: Learning to brew / appreciate better beer

Brewing can be a science, but does it have to be? I mean, when we think about the history of brewing, haven’t people been brewing beer since before the human race even knew what yeast really was? With that in mind, can we possibly be overthinking brewing and beer in general? Do we need to know every little nano-aspect of brewing to the Nth degree? Well, I think there’s some wisdom in that, but let’s talk about it some, shall we?
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In it to win it? Why A.E. isn’t a fan of homebrew competitions.

Put your money where your mouth is. Play to win. Fight for the right to party. Our culture is a very competitive one, is it not? Many brewers have made the switch from homebrewing to pro brewing to avoid the rat race. Fighting their way to the top of the corporate ladder wasn’t cutting it for our professional zymurgist friends, so they decided to get off at the next stop and start doing what they loved in order to live. And yet homebrew competitions are more popular than ever, with brewers submitting their concoctions in any number of style categories all to win money, prizes, and bragging rights among their fellow amateur competitors. But is it worth it? Ultimately, the answer is that it depends on what you are “in it” for. For me, the answer is a resounding “NO!” But allow me to explain.
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