Lite Readin' - B is for Beer

D is for Drain Pour

The enthusiasm we bring to our beer exploration encourages us to try all varieties of beer from a seemingly endless source of breweries. In the beginning we come across flavors we do not enjoy but having just begun our journey, and being honest about our ignorance, cannot easily tell if our lack of appreciation has to do with us or the beer. If others are enjoying the beer perhaps it is our palate that is at fault. With time... [Read More]

Lite Readin' - The Complete Beer Course

Bootstrapping for Beer Buffs

As exciting a time as it is to be a beer drinker today, it is also one of the most confusing times. The number of breweries and variety of styles available can easily overwhelm the casual drinker, let alone a neophyte. It would be a shame to allow all of those good to great flavors pass you by simply due to a little confusion and a touch of intimidation. Titles such as Joshua M. Bernstein’s The Complete Beer Course... [Read More]

Lite Readin' - The Brewer's Tale

Messages in Bottles

Most things are better when shared, including beer. If you have to imagine drinking buddies so be it. William Bostwick suggests eight such pals to help us better understand beer and ourselves. These eight avatars explain human history through the lens of beer making. In our modern times it is easy to dismiss the particularity of created products, something which was only recently done away with by way of the assembly line, mass production and, more recently, mass marketing. Humans... [Read More]

Lite Readin' - Oh Beautiful Beer

In the Eye of the Beer Holder

I appreciate any book that can show the familiar as new, or vice versa. Helping to explain how and why things came to pass, that their creation was a contingent event provides a refreshing and sobering reminder of things need not be accepted as they appear. Grounding extant objects in historical context helps to enliven their meaning and meaningfulness. We are given an opportunity to appreciate items on multiple levels, contextualize the aesthetic or functional aspects, even of a... [Read More]

Lite Readin' - My Beer Year

Credentialize, this

What is it to know? How can we say with any certainty that we know what we assert? These and related questions run through much of (Western) philosophy, certainly playing a major role in modern philosophy, specifically. It is worth noting that these kinds of questions run deep when considering our own claims of knowledge and when being frank about the limits of same. We do not need to delve into ideas about the world as representation or whether or not we, as humans, have access and direct knowledge of... [Read More]

Lite Readin' - The Comic Book Story of Beer

Graphical Bottle

If you thought a comic book would be an appropriate medium for chronicling beer history due to pairing trivial interests you would be right about the effectiveness of the match but sorely overlooking the richness of either topic. Beer’s eclectic, long and rich history is done justice by the use of another prehistory human invention, visual representation. Ostensibly about beer, the book provides compelling examples of lives, cultures, histories, and biological material intertwining with one another to create a rich and complex canvas.... [Read More]

MixSixFix - Premiumisation or Peak

A peek at peak beer and premiumisation in different regions.

The concept of peak beer is regionally verifiable . Peak craft is a more nuanced story and one that is still developing. Around the world we see a decline in conventional lager consumption which dominates nearly all markets on a macro level. The idea of peak craft is a slightly different animal but potentially no less real in certain parts of the world, the US first among candidate examples. Peak craft like peak oil before it will undoubtedly prove to be a regional phenomenon. While... [Read More]

MixSixFix - Yeast & Hops are Wild

Linking wild yeast, "sense of place", and a record hop valuation.

The starting point and inspiration for this edition is an enjoyable three minute video [1] that uses a light touch in covering the steps, certainly a few of the most critical, used by Allagash in producing their wild yeast fermented beers. Our host is Master Brewer Jason Perkins who gives us an overview of the process, emphasizing that while wild yeast is all around us, practically speaking all of the beer in the world is produced with cultured yeast. In order to brew the beer with naturally available... [Read More]

Branching out

One Twig at a Time

While it is not clear if anyone cares to go on looking at the percentage change of brewery counts over time (crickets!) I am not ready to give it up. At least not yet, but this is likely the last word on the matter for a while. It is good to follow through on what you start and I certainly want to be a good influence on my future nephews/nieces. Additionally, there is the self-serving reason of being able to reuse this visualization work in future posts and... [Read More]

Let's keep going with this

A Little Digging

Not Gonna Get Too Dirty… Yet So regarding that deceptively simple plot, once I was done putting it together I got to thinking (uh-ooh) about some questions and points of interest. Sure, we didn’t break any ground with the graphic but it was meant as a starting point for further investigation and that’s what this post is about: digging a little deeper. Data Source: Beer Institute First the “obvious” things. If you knew a little about... [Read More]