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The next trend in craft beer

Be it good or bad, craft beer has always had trends that a lot of breweries/drinkers like to follow. Once the initial novelty of craft beer wore off IPA’s seemed to the stage. The hoppier the better. And while that still may be true for some drinkers, I think that most have adjusted themselves to enjoy a balanced hoppy beer over a hop-bomb any day.

In my mind the next “big” thing has been oaked beers. While putting beer in oak casks has been around for hundreds of years, it was the thing to do. There were/are tons of beers that are now oak conditions. While I do like some of the characteristics that oak can add to a beer, it seems like moreover the oak barrel is there to put a “unique” spin on the beer. I am sure there have been plenty of other trends that I have missed, but I’ve only been in the craft beer world for three years now, so those trends may not of been as obvious to me.

In my mind the up and coming trend in craft beer is sour beers. I see more and more news/press releases about sour beers than ever before. It seems like everyone is starting to experiment in them. I really haven’t ever enjoyed the whole sour thing, but I can see why people enjoy it. Sour beers have also been around for hundreds of years, but it seems that a lot of craft brewers are just now taking their first steps into the style. I am all for experimentation in beer and I hope that American Craft Brewers keep turning out some of the finest beers in the world, but I want brewers to be themselves and make quality beers that don’t play towards trends.

Beer Pioneers trailer

08-04-01This movie has been in the works for fifteen years now and has all of the big names in the craft beer industry in it. There is a trailer on the website linked here. It is nice to see a bunch of movies taking place about the beer industry. The other movie that recently came out was Beer Wars, and soon we can expect this. I’m really looking forward to this as it looks to tell the story of craft breweries from the owners/brewers perspective. To quote the website,

Beer Pioneers explores the history and evolution of craft beer in America, from Anchor Brewing and New Albion to Merchant du Vin and the Maltose Falcons. The documentary takes an in-depth look at the people, places and events behind the craft beer revolution.

Filmed over a 15 year period, director Jay Sheveck interviews many of the early pioneers and revisits dozens of historic breweries and events that helped shape the modern day craft brewing industry. Archival photos, films and breweriana compliment the narrative, shedding even more light upon the earliest days.

Beer Pioneers reveals the story of the American craft brewing revolution unlike any other documentary to date. The final feature-length documentary will debut in Summer 2010.”