Friday, April 02, 2010

British "malt manifesto" in an American context?

There's plenty to think about in this piece. Not all of the points therein are applicable to America or to our craft beer culture, but some points are well taken, and when there is time, I hope to return to them.

I have a manifesto of my own in the works, although it remains sketchy.

The malt manifesto, by Tony Naylor (Guardian Word of Mouth blog)

Current efforts to portray traditional beers as modern unisex drinks seem to be missing the point. It's not bitter on Twitter or the 'ale' in 'female' that counts if you want to turn young, funky types on to cask ales

1 comment:

Doctor Tarr said...

I read that article and many of the comments (some I skimmed).

I don't think all that much is applicable here.

Sure, there are young people drinking Pabst because it's been marketed as the cool, cheap beer, and, sure, some of the people in the Public House (myself included), especially in the bar area, could be visually grouped with those CAMRA guys, but, for the most part, I think good beer is popular with a large group of people, including the young ones.

There are still large areas of the country where the beer choice in a regular bar or restaurant is dire, but in a lot of places you'll find one or two local or regional beers on tap in most restaurants.

At the very least you'll find Goose Island. Yes, I know that's due to the distribution arrangement with A-B Inbev, but it's a decent beer, and it's showing up all over the place.

Your beers are popping up all over the place in Louisville, and I see some Browning's on tap at places other than the ball park.

I visit Atlanta often, and the popular bars and restaurants generally have a couple of the regional beers on tap, especially the Sweetwater 420. Yes, I get why, but it shows that a decent beer with clever marketing can work. Atlanta bars also often have the Terrapin rye ale, which doesn't rely on a drug reference.

I just don't think that good beer has the same stigma here it apparently does in England. Most people would rather drink Bud/Miller/Corona/etc., but I think that's in large part what they want. The marketing only influences their choice of watery lager.