New England Cable News, an NBC News affiliate, had a nice video on Russian River Brewing, and Pliny the Elder and the upcoming Pliny the Younger release, which this year will take place February 1. It’s a nice piece, by Garvin Thomas, but when they return to the Anchor, she should have just kept her mouth shut, instead putting her foot well and truly in it. But watch the video first, concentrate on the good vibes, and see if you notice it, too.
At the end, they talk about the poll that the American Homebrewers Association takes annually, asking nationwide members to pick the best beer in America, and how Pliny has been picked as #1 four years in a row. The 2012 Poll got a record 16,445 votes from homebrewers around the country. But that didn’t stop the snark. Understandably, since this is New England Cable News, the announcer chided the list because there were no New England breweries in the Top 25 and the highest ranked New England beer was Samuel Adams, which tied for #31. I understand that’s their audience but was the snark really necessary? She then states almost all of the beers on the list were from the West Coast, saying “not a surprise since the American Homebrewers Association is based in California,” implying that the voting must have been rigged in favor of West Coast beers. Of course, the AHA has been in Boulder, Colorado since 1978 and has members all across the U.S., not concentrated in the Western states. That was just moronic and completely unnecessary. Congratulations to Vinnie and Natalie on the coverage.
Nice treatment of the Cilurzos (GO VINNIE & NATALIE!); LMAO on the end commentary, especially the bit about Sam Adams (made under the auspices of the guy who used to advertise on TV that he brewed the best beer in America) being #31. No excuse for the bad “homework” on the AHA (including getting the name wrong) HQ location.
That the “BEST BEER IN AMERICA?” tag was onscreen throughout the entire portion when the Cilurzos were talking was bad production; the snark I would attribute to typical Bahst’n pretentiousness & arrogance. Further, I’m not surprised that Dogfish 90 min & SNPA made the top 4 – I’ve never tasted the one that was #2. Nonetheless, #’s 2 & 3 were from the Midwest & Delaware.
I’m not an AHA member, so I haven’t seen the list (which I suspect will include products from New Glarus, Ommegang, & more from CA/CO/OR/WA ahead of Sam). The key point that they forgot to mention to the masses is that the BEST craft brewers don’t need to advertise – word of mouth within the ever-increasing “beer geek” populace suffices, & they expand production to keep up when they can afford to. Yes, a few “sell out” (a la Goose Island & Anchor, the 2 I know the most about) – but if the buyers retain the integrity of the originals (which means keeping the beancounters & marketing types away from the product line expansion decisions) – no harm, no foul.
Jay – if you’ve not published the latest AHA list before, you should do so ASAP as an add-on to this post (my bad if I somehow missed it).