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Thursday, June 9, 2011

Why craft beer?

We had my daughter's second birthday party a few weeks ago. It was small, mostly family, a few friends. As always, I tried to select a beer selection that would appeal to the craft beer drinkers and the non-craft drinkers. We had a small guest list, and limited budget, and I really wanted one mix case to please them all. This is more easily said that done.

Craft drinkers are fairly easy to please- they have more... lets say "promiscuous" beer drinking habits. They, excuse me, "we" .. like to drink around. We're basically beer sluts, let's be honest here. We'll give most beer's a try. This is probably why when I asked my brother in law why he brought his own beer, he said, rather succinctly- "you always have some weird crap lying around". And he's right, I usually do, although I prefer to think of it as good stuff and not weird crap...although sometimes it is really weird stuff,  like Dogfish Heads Palo Santo Marron (which , franky, taste like wood. Profoundly like wood).

Non craft drinkers are really very monogamous to their beer of choice. They rarely stray from the major brands, the Budweisers, Miller, Coors products. Why is this?

Here's what I think. While I don't prefer Bud, their brewers are widely respected in the industry for maintaining amazing consistency from batch to batch. I saw an interview with a Belgian brewmaster once who sang the praises of the Budweiser brewers, saying he wished he could have their consistency. You buy a Bud, its gonna taste like the last one, guaranteed. I think sometimes that's all people want. I had a Bud yesterday, it was good, I want another tomorrow. Why try something else?

While I applaud the quality control and consistency in the product the mass brewers produce, I just don't like the taste. Honestly,  I find it rather bland. It has no aroma. Shouldn't food and drink smell like something? It has a weak, unhealthy pale color. This is because the mass brewers use more adjuncts in their brews- rice, corn, barley, wheat- than craft brewers, who use mainly malt, hops, wheat.

Why do they do this? Cost. Craft brewers put their money into making the beer. The mass brewers put the money into advertising it.

And good craft brewers put money into both so the can mock the big guys. Gott love the folks at Breckenridge...(I'll post more of these, but there are more on you tube)


Karin said...

While not a fan of the Bud/Coors etc. brands myself (entirely with you on the taste and body is worth more) ... I agree that they have a place. For many women (and gay men) I know, they drink light beer because it has fewer calories and, go figure, if the desire is to get drunk, there are fewer cheaper ways.

Last Saturday I was at a wedding reception and consumed 2 tall vodka/cranberry cocktails and about 5 glasses of wine. At the end of this, some enthusiastic 20-something dancer, standing at the bar next to me, demanded a round of light beer for the group. And I am surprised to admit that I enjoyed my Coors Light very much, in the context of a light-bodied palate cleanser.

me said...

Are you sure you didn't enjoy the Coors Light because of the 5 glasses of wine etc. :)