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Can you afford to buy craft brews?

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Dr_Gordon_Freeman

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Today I was at the local beverage superstore and I was walking down the beer aisles practically drooling. I was thinking about trying some midas touch to see if I might want to brew something similar (just for example) and when I found it, the FOUR pack was like $16! I don't know about you guys, but I sure can't afford to pay that much for beer, beyond a couple every great once in a while. I will pay gladly for very high quality beers, but a lot of these craft brew shops have regular stuff like brown ales at outrageous prices. I am afraid that if I try something expensive, I WILL REALLY LIKE IT! This happened to me with Dead Guy Ale. I could drink millions of bottles of the stuff, but it's just too dang pricey for casual drinking.

The vast majority of the craft beers on those shelves are simply overpriced, including ones that I enjoy greatly :(

I guess it's not a terrible thing, just one more reason to brew my own beer when I enjoy expensive styles.
 

bdupree

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I went by the specialty store on my way home from work tonight. Bought a Duvel for $3 and a Fullers 1845 for $6. It was overpriced as hell. It was some pretty good beer and nice to try something different every now and then. I was thinking while I was drinking them, they were almost as good as the first batch I brewed at home.

To me, it's worth it to try out all those overpriced beers, find one I like, then spend the next few months trying to clone it, asking other home brewers for input, and sometimes making some good beer on accident. I guess I look at it more as research than blowing money on overpriced beer.
 

bdupree

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We don't have a local pub here that will serve craft beers. If you want to drive an hour or so away, it's around $3-4 a piece for some 12oz micro brews that pretty much suck.
 

MetallHed

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hell no. a "make-your-own-six-pack" of micros costs about 13 bucks. I'm broke as hell as it is and I neglect my truck, motorcycle, girlfriend, and basic human needs to pay for homebrew supplies.

maybe once every couple of months i'll build a six pack and grab a cigar and have at 'er.
 

nealf

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I buy craft beer very rarely... If I find something I really do like then the odds are very good that someone has a clone recipe that will get you fairly close to the craft version.
 

Jud

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I get a wild hair up my ass every now and then and go to the store and buy something new. But lately I have been a real cheap ass. I also have a hard time paying 2-6 dollars for a beer, that is hops and special grains. Besides I can plan a brew day and brew a batch of it. Enjoy 2 cases of beer for the price of a 12 pack. It is summer so I am on my PA and IPA kick now. Need to get the stouts ready for winter though. Besides most of what I drink someone has a clone or I play with a recipe and end up with something great.
 

FromZwolle

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i could spend the $$$ for some of the micros, but at $12-20 for a six or even 4-pack, i pass every time. i just don't believe i'll love those four beers more than i would the 24 bottles of homebrew i could make for that money. plus i got bills, so the beer budget stays tight.
 

TheWeeb

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I absolutely love this homebrewing thing, even though I am new to it. In answer to the OPs original question, yes, but it is all relative. Though I know there are many great home brewers who can clone just about anything, I doubt you could easily put together a dupe of Midas Touch, and certainly not cheaply. I am looking right now at a bottle of Avery's Sui Generis, a sour beer blended from 10 different barrels that had aged over two year's time; only 147 cases were made. I paid $8 per 12 oz bottle (I bought the max of six on release day) and feel it was worth it. Some of these just cannot be duplicated at home.

Would I be kicking back 3-4 $8 beers a night? Hell no! But if you think of it as going out to a fine restaurant, to me it makes sense. Once or twice a month, treat yourself!
 

rtracer

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I am a hop head and absolutely LOVE IPA's and hopyy beer.
Luckily I live in Nor Cal and we have lots of craft IPA's and beer festivals.
Unfortunately I do pay top dollar for these expensive craft brews.
Bear Republic, Stone, Lagunitas and Medo are some of my favortites. I pay between $8.99 and $14 for a 6er.
I now have my Keezer up and running, but I just payed $89 for a 1/6th of Racer:eek::eek:

Let me ask you guys.....
I really want to get into home brewing, but I need to give the wife some time as I just dropped a bunch o cash for my Keezer build, patio bar build and all the accessories, but....
Not including all the crap I will need to buy to get started, what am I looking at as an average cost in supplies per Corny keg to brew?
I am going to be paying $70-$90 per 1/6th keg of myh fav's.
(The wife insists that there be a 1/4 or 1/2 keg of "light" beer in the Keezer at all times) :(
 

BogusOwnz

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Once a week I pick up a sixer of something fun or a couple bombers. Last night I bought a sixer of dfh india brown ale for $10 and impulse bought a 12oz bottle of Oaked arrogant bastard for $3. I enjoy the process of buying craft beer and don't see my self ever givin it up.
 

GoldMiner

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Not including all the crap I will need to buy to get started, what am I looking at as an average cost in supplies per Corny keg to brew?
I am going to be paying $70-$90 per 1/6th keg of myh fav's.
(The wife insists that there be a 1/4 or 1/2 keg of "light" beer in the Keezer at all times) :(
It'll be considerably less.

I usually do all-grain kits.

They've ranged in price from $16 for an English Mild to $40+ for a Pliny the Elder clone.
 

bad coffee

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Hell yeah I can. I don't have any other expensive hobbies, (other than living in NYC.) A 6-pack of harp is $9. I paid $17.99 for a 12 pack of Corona for a party, laughing the lady at the cash register. "IT'S CORONA! WHY IS IT $18?"

When I go visit my old roommates I hit up the beer store out there. $7.99 for a big bottle of Chimay Blue, $3.99 for a bottle of Red Rocket. You gotta dodge some crack hos, but the prices are worth it.

B
 

Special Hops

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Can you afford to buy craft brews?
No - that's why I homebrew. I'll buy something occasionally just to try it. Or when I run out of homebrew. But to drop 8-10 bucks for a 6 pack on a regular basis would put me into bankruptcy.
 

slowbie

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To say that these beers are overpriced is a load of crap if you ask me. Many of these craft breweries are trying to expand but can't afford to expand quickly enough to meet demand. This is on top of the fact that these brewers aren't making a ton of money. Yes, DFH midas touch costs more than Bud, but if you look at the ingredients and the economies of scale you shouldn't be surprised by that. Besides that, if a brewery is struggling to meet demand then they are definitely not selling overpriced beer.

Also, I think the prices quoted in this thread are very extreme examples. $12-20 for a six pack? Really? Try buying local beers. In Michigan I could get Bells two hearted for $9/six. Here in NC I can get most local beers for $8/six.
 

Daybis

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I usually won't spend more than $6 on a six pack. I will occasionally spurge on some of the more expensive stuff.
 

summersolstice

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I buy it occasionally but I have too much beer in the basement to buy more. I pay $10 for a six pack of cans of the excellent local Thunderhead Honey Wheat or Dark Wheat.
 

SwampassJ

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Was at the grocery store today (Publix).
9.19 for every Sam Adams 6 pack.
8.49 for Sierra Nevada (Really wanted Summerfest).
9.99 for Guiness Extra Stout 6 pack.
7.49 for Pilsner Urquell (I thought about it then just said screw it).
The prices are going up. I could of gotten a 6 pack of nearly any craft beer at the total wine for what the grocery store wanted. Except that it's a 25 minute drive.

I figured I spent enough on the sampler from Brewzii's (stuff was ok, still think Big Bear is better) and the 22oz of Creme Brulee I just polished off.
 

northernlad

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Today I was at the local beverage superstore and I was walking down the beer aisles practically drooling. I was thinking about trying some midas touch to see if I might want to brew something similar (just for example) and when I found it, the FOUR pack was like $16! I don't know about you guys, but I sure can't afford to pay that much for beer, beyond a couple every great once in a while. I will pay gladly for very high quality beers, but a lot of these craft brew shops have regular stuff like brown ales at outrageous prices. I am afraid that if I try something expensive, I WILL REALLY LIKE IT! This happened to me with Dead Guy Ale. I could drink millions of bottles of the stuff, but it's just too dang pricey for casual drinking.

The vast majority of the craft beers on those shelves are simply overpriced, including ones that I enjoy greatly :(

I guess it's not a terrible thing, just one more reason to brew my own beer when I enjoy expensive styles.
Overpriced compared to what?
 

mullenite

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I can and I buy them all the time. I picked up a 6-pack of Stone IPA while grocery shopping yesterday, in fact.
 
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I love to go to a place in Cincy and drop 100-150 bucks of hard to find bottles, but that's a post birthday or post Xmas trip only when I have cash. I usually have standard SA or SN in the fridge but stick with home brew or PBR or Miller Lite for mass drinking.
 

bkov

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Hell yeah I can. I don't have any other expensive hobbies, (other than living in NYC.) A 6-pack of harp is $9. I paid $17.99 for a 12 pack of Corona for a party, laughing the lady at the cash register. "IT'S CORONA! WHY IS IT $18?"

When I go visit my old roommates I hit up the beer store out there. $7.99 for a big bottle of Chimay Blue, $3.99 for a bottle of Red Rocket. You gotta dodge some crack hos, but the prices are worth it.

B

damn, $18 for a 12? its been a year or 2 but a case of 24 was usually $24

i wouldent buy the craft beers if i didnt homebrew, and was a regular beer drinker. the costs would add up fast. drinking 1 or 2 per weeknight than a 6pack on friday and saturday, you would be spending heavily. i guess enough people buy it though at those prices, supply and demand, or they would lower prices
 

bkov

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and thats drinking at home. at a bar its much more expensive plus tip
 

arturo7

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Relatively speaking, great beer is much cheaper than average wine.

You can't really buy a decent quality bottle o' vino for less than $20. One bottle of wine is aboot 4 glasses, right?
 

northernlad

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You can't really buy a decent quality bottle o' vino for less than $20.
I totallly disagree with that statement. Ravenswood, Kenwood, Bogel (to name a few) have some wonderful wines at $10-20.
A bottle of wine is four 6oz pours plus the angel's share.
 
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After looking through this thread I feel lucky I live where I do. I recently took a trip to Michigan and was amazed by the price of beer there. 10.99 for a six pack of Oberon? New Belgium, Great Divide, Odells, etc in Colorado are not that expensive.

Anyways, I still buy craft beer when I go to the liquor store. Sometimes I get a bomber of something I want to cellar for a while, or a sixer of something good. Very rarely do I go to a liquor store and spend more than what i would for a batch of homebrew.
 

TheWeeb

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After looking through this thread I feel lucky I live where I do. I recently took a trip to Michigan and was amazed by the price of beer there. 10.99 for a six pack of Oberon? New Belgium, Great Divide, Odells, etc in Colorado are not that expensive.
Man, how I miss the Denver metro area, Lukas down there by the mall and Argonaut on Colfax. Hundreds of craft brews from around the world to choose from . . . . the last trip I made, for the International Space Symposium in Colorado Springs, I dropped $250 on craft brew.
 

Special Hops

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To say that these beers are overpriced is a load of crap if you ask me. Many of these craft breweries are trying to expand but can't afford to expand quickly enough to meet demand. This is on top of the fact that these brewers aren't making a ton of money. Yes, DFH midas touch costs more than Bud, but if you look at the ingredients and the economies of scale you shouldn't be surprised by that. Besides that, if a brewery is struggling to meet demand then they are definitely not selling overpriced beer.

Also, I think the prices quoted in this thread are very extreme examples. $12-20 for a six pack? Really? Try buying local beers. In Michigan I could get Bells two hearted for $9/six. Here in NC I can get most local beers for $8/six.
Who is saying overpriced? Overpriced and not affordable are two different things. They charge what they need to to make money and stay in business. I have no problem with that. I just can't afford to spend 40+ bucks a weeks on craft beers. Some can. I can make it at home and that 40 bucks gives me a months worth of beer.
 

slowbie

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Who is saying overpriced? Overpriced and not affordable are two different things. They charge what they need to to make money and stay in business. I have no problem with that. I just can't afford to spend 40+ bucks a weeks on craft beers. Some can. I can make it at home and that 40 bucks gives me a months worth of beer.
From the OP:

The vast majority of the craft beers on those shelves are simply overpriced, including ones that I enjoy greatly :(
 

beowulf

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If you expect to get Midas Touch or Pliny the Elder or Arrogant Bastard for the same price as a Bud Light or Miller, you need to wake up and smell the hops. For any of you who have brewed a clone of some of the craft brews, you know how expensive it can be for the extra malt, hops or honey. You pay for quality ingredients and for a brewery that does not have the economies of scale that you find at one of the BMC outfits. Also, I'd imagine that corn and rice are probably cheaper than malted barley, especially when you buy it in bulk. So, the craft breweries have a lot going against them.

I'm no expert, but my feelings are that craft brews are "appropriately priced", and therefore more expensive. They should be. It's just that we've been accustomed to expecting to pay $3-4 for a sixer of BMC (not sure even what they go for nowadays), and anything more than that seems overpriced. There are always options...drink less or spend more. If you want to spend <$6 per sixer, make your own (which still is often not 'dirt cheap') or be content with a BMC product.
 

phrogpilot73

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My wife and I are DINK. I've got enough beer in my pipeline to keep me supplied for a while - but since I only have three taps - I look to craft beer for my variety. I justify it's high cost for "research". I don't even buy BMC when I'm having a big party (my last party I dropped $80 just on beer).
 

FromZwolle

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If you expect to get Midas Touch or Pliny the Elder or Arrogant Bastard for the same price as a Bud Light or Miller, you need to wake up and smell the hops. For any of you who have brewed a clone of some of the craft brews, you know how expensive it can be for the extra malt, hops or honey. You pay for quality ingredients and for a brewery that does not have the economies of scale that you find at one of the BMC outfits. Also, I'd imagine that corn and rice are probably cheaper than malted barley, especially when you buy it in bulk. So, the craft breweries have a lot going against them.

I'm no expert, but my feelings are that craft brews are "appropriately priced", and therefore more expensive. They should be. It's just that we've been accustomed to expecting to pay $3-4 for a sixer of BMC (not sure even what they go for nowadays), and anything more than that seems overpriced. There are always options...drink less or spend more. If you want to spend <$6 per sixer, make your own (which still is often not 'dirt cheap') or be content with a BMC product.
i'm not sayin that craft beer should be cheap, but at the prices that my local shop has, i just can't afford to to buy em regularly (once a week or so) i do drop a few$$ on research beers once in a while.
 

FromZwolle

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Relatively speaking, great beer is much cheaper than average wine.

You can't really buy a decent quality bottle o' vino for less than $20. One bottle of wine is aboot 4 glasses, right?
cost of grapes vs cost of grain. and long term storage of both. plus how long does it take to make the average beer vs the average bottle of wine.
 
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