Session #69: The Perfect Beer World

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Our 69th Session, is hosted by Jorge, who writes Brew Beer And Drink It. The topic he’s chosen is what is the The Perfect Beer World? Essentially, he wants to know what will “lead us into the Perfect Beer World? or how do you describe the Perfect Beer World?” You can see more examples or a fuller explanation at his announcement, but here’s an abridged version of what Jorge is looking for:

I like seeing:

  1. more people share the wealth of this industry rather than just a few companies
  2. passionate people brewing because they love the craft more than they care about pleasing the pockets of shareholders, and
  3. micro-breweries actually getting involved with the community and hold events that benefit non-profits…

The Perfect Beer World… that’s how I picture it…

So with that being said… what is something you would like to see change… something that will take us closer to the Perfect Beer World?

The topic is wide open… even if you think that what you want to change for the better is not important or ridiculous… share it!

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I should say at the outset that despite there being many things I’d like to see improve in the state of beer, the fact is that the way things are at present are a lot better than when I was a kid — or young adult — and first starting to love beer. For those of us old enough to have been alive before the rise of craft beer, it’s tempting to say things are near perfect now. And while I don’t believe they are perfect, or indeed nearing it, they are so much better than they used to be, it must be said. In many ways, I’m somewhat jealous of anyone turning 21 today and finding themselves in a world of beer that’s nearly unrecognizable from the world of 1980, the year I could first legally drink (not including trips to New Jersey, New York and Virginia where it was 18 or 19 at different times or on the military base where it was legal at 18).

But, of course, there’s always room for improvement. So what would my perfect beer world look like? I’m not sure there ever will be one, but I’m game to make a wish list. If even some of these eventually came to pass, the world would be a far better place, at least to me, and possibly other beer lovers.

  1. Craft percentage would be at least 50%. If craft beer was about half, or more, of all beer sold, then we could stop calling it craft beer, or struggling with what to call it, and just call it “beer.” Plus, there would likely be far more choices available.
  2. Newspapers & magazines will stop calling their drinks coverage, or in some cases their title, “the wine section,” “wine & food,” the “food & wine section” or some such, and either include beer in the title or make it more generic so it includes all alcoholic beverages. They already cover beer, and it’s insulting that they don’t update their headings to match that reality.
  3. Retailers, especially grocery, liquor and convenience stores, stock a good selection of better beer and stop carrying every package of macrobeer.
  4. Restaurants start carrying beer lists that are every bit as thoughtful and extensive as their wine lists.
  5. Waitstaff and bartenders know what they’re selling, at least enough that they can actually help customers decide what to order.
  6. Chefs get a clue about how well beer and food work together, and start cooking with it and thinking about what to pair their menu items with. This is especially important for the ones who currently continue to be willfully ignorant about beer.
  7. Thanks to common sense, the good work of small craft breweries in local communities and a sudden breakout of perspective cause neo-prohibitionist and anti-alcohol organizations to lose so many members that they effectively go out of business.
  8. Beer distributors, in larger numbers, recognize the profitability of craft beer and stop placing as much focus on the bigger brands. This has changed a lot over the past decade, but could still improve in some areas of the country.
  9. The minimum age for drinking is either lowered to 18 across the board, is lowered to 18 for just beer, or is permitted for active duty servicemen and veterans who are at least 18 but under 21.
  10. People stop drinking low-calorie light diet beer, and turn instead to session beers.

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