2012: An election year, and the supposed end of the world.
Youâ€™re bound to find some articles with titles like â€œ12 Real Signs of the Apocalypseâ€ or â€œ7 Pieces of Legislation [Candidate] Has Passed That Will Make it Legal to Kick You in the Nutsâ€.
Frankly, it can all be very depressing and, even worse, repetitive. So considering all the negativity running around our newsfeeds, itâ€™s nice to see that the beer world has kept things positive. Without further ado…
3 Ways Beer Is Still Awesome
1. Craft beer is on the upswing.
According last weekâ€™s press release from The Brewerâ€™s Association (via BrewPulse), â€œ Dollar sales [for small and independent craft brewers] were up 14 percent in the first half of 2012, while volume of craft brewed beer sold jumped 12 percent during that same time period.â€
This is excellent news! Despite â€œthis economyâ€, people are still coming out in increasing droves to drink tasty beer. Whatâ€™s more interesting is that the growth is specific to craft beer since overall beer sales have declined. Not to knock the less-tasty macros, but if people are focusing less on quantity and more on (quantity of) quality, I think thatâ€™s something to celebrate.
2. There are more IPAs today than ever before
Another thing to celebrate? More IPAs. Say what you want about beer styles; have your pet favorites if you will, but the IPA isÂ the Kanye of the craft beer world. In spite of his â€œI donâ€™t give a f*** how bitter you think I amâ€ attitude (and probably because of it), we have to admit that he’s good. Like really good.
So what if IPA is dating Kim Kardashian? Does this make his flow less perfect? His beats less flawless? Okay, the metaphor ended a second ago, but the point is we can all appreciate a good IPA. And, as Ashley Routson points out in this articleÂ for CraftBeer.com, we now have a few more to appreciate.
In addition to the typical American-style IPA, English-style IPA, and the higher-than-high gravity Double IPAs, Routson lists and provides examples for a number of emerging sub-categories. My personal favorite is the Black IPA. If youâ€™ve never had one, definitely seek it out. Itâ€™s a twist on the usual bitterness, and a perfect example when explaining why one should never judge a beerâ€™s taste by its color.
3. â€œCraft Beerâ€ is in the DICTIONARY
Merriam-Websterâ€™s Collegiate Dictionary adds about 100 new words upon its annual review, but The Washington Post was able to share this yearâ€™s top 25, and â€œcraft beerâ€ made the cut. The official definition:
craft beer n (1986): a specialty beer produced in limited quantities: MICROBREW
Itâ€™s in good company, joined by such gems as gastropub (â€œa pub, bar, or tavern that also offers meals of high qualityâ€), mancave (â€œa room or space (as in a basement) designed according to the taste of the man of the house to be used as his personal area for hobbies and leisure activitiesâ€), and f-bomb (no explanation necessary).
So the world may be ending and we all hate each other, but beer is plentiful, diverse, and recognized in our official lexicon. S**t’s not all bad!