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Old 01-11-2013, 02:24 AM   #11
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I am not objecting to American craft beer, or saying that anything should be done differently. I prefer traditional english and german beers, that is my personal taste. Anyone can brew whatever they want. I'm asking the question why American breweries are making these hop bombs, or flavoring beer with unusual ingredients?
Because that's other people's personal tastes?
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Old 01-11-2013, 02:25 AM   #12
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I am not objecting to American craft beer, or saying that anything should be done differently. I prefer traditional english and german beers, that is my personal taste. Anyone can brew whatever they want. I'm asking the question why American breweries are making these hop bombs, or flavoring beer with unusual ingredients? Is that the American taste, are American breweries trying to be different, trying to create their own styles, or just trying to out do each other?
Probably a bit of all of those things. But beers are always brewed to the taste of the brewer in reality. Dogfish makes big beers cause that's what Sam Calagione liked. Hugh Sisson brewed (or commissioned) Loose Cannon because he wanted a super hoppy beer that wasn't available in their area.
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Old 01-11-2013, 02:26 AM   #13
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Many breweries in the 'old days' were constrained by weather, ingredients available, and the water source. Certain water profiles work well with certain styles, combined with what was available ingredient wise. With industrialization and global commerce, brewers have much more access to strange ingredients--and more of it than most old brewers ever had. With the availability of these new ingredients and water chemistry, creativity is able to thrive.

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Old 01-11-2013, 02:32 AM   #14
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Because that's other people's personal tastes?
That might be the best response I've gotten!
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Old 01-11-2013, 02:53 AM   #15
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Well, I'd point to Mikkeller for doing weirder things than most American breweries. That weasel cat stout? I haven't tried it, but I don't think you can top cat $h!t coffee beer. Or their 1000 IBU beer. I'd also point to the whole high-ABV arms race that those couple Scottish breweries embraced. The point being, using strange ingredients isn't uniquely American. Nor is brewing something "extreme" in any regard.

That said, I too grow weary of this "how many hops can we cram in" or "how high of an ABV can we make" or "who can make the stoutiest stout" thing. They definitely have their place. But these are the beers that make headlines (at least within the beer world) and thus manufacture demand. There's multitudes of American brewers making great, balanced, drinkable beers.

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Old 01-11-2013, 02:54 AM   #16
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I think a lot of it is because this is 'Murica and American's way of thinking. We are a boiling pot of cultures, so there isn't this strict adherence to traditions and such. We just don't have them. We invented the double down (KFCs chicken sandwich that uses chicken instead of bread), deep fried Kool-Aid, Kool-Aid pickles and Chinese food. Why? Because this is 'Murica and no one can tell us what a beer is any more than they can tell us what a chicken sandwich is.

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Old 01-11-2013, 02:59 AM   #17
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Well, I'd point to Mikkeller for doing weirder things than most American breweries. That weasel cat stout? I haven't tried it, but I don't think you can top cat $h!t coffee beer. Or their 1000 IBU beer. I'd also point to the whole high-ABV arms race that those couple Scottish breweries embraced. The point being, using strange ingredients isn't uniquely American. Nor is brewing something "extreme" in any regard.

That said, I too grow weary of this "how many hops can we cram in" or "how high of an ABV can we make" or "who can make the stoutiest stout" thing. They definitely have their place. But these are the beers that make headlines (at least within the beer world) and thus manufacture demand. There's multitudes of American brewers making great, balanced, drinkable beers.
Thanks for your reply, I think you have it right. There are a lot of great beers out there, but bull testicle stout makes the headlines.
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Old 01-11-2013, 03:01 AM   #18
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I think a lot of it is because this is 'Murica and American's way of thinking. We are a boiling pot of cultures, so there isn't this strict adherence to traditions and such. We just don't have them. We invented the double down (KFCs chicken sandwich that uses chicken instead of bread), deep fried Kool-Aid, Kool-Aid pickles and Chinese food. Why? Because this is 'Murica and no one can tell us what a beer is any more than they can tell us what a chicken sandwich is.
it's kind of unfortunate, but I think you might be right here. the media kind of make it necessary to be extreme or crazy to be noticed instead of being good.
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Old 01-11-2013, 03:11 AM   #19
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Everyone wants to make their mark, be different, be the first, etc. I had an "extreme stout" 2 days ago, it. tasted like s$&t and I dumped the 7$ bottle down the sink. 3 years from now how many of those brews will still be brewed? A really competitive market is good for the craft industry, but brings flashes in the pan or should I say pot.
A client and I were talking, she loves the Irish Guinness on draught, the export not so much. To each his own.

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Old 01-11-2013, 03:21 AM   #20
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American craft breweries make a tremendous amount of beer in traditional styles. Your objection is that they don't make only that?
^^This.

Why does anyone care that a small fraction of beers made by a small fraction of the brewing industry are "extreme"? How does this point to us ignoring our roots? That's ridiculous.
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