Saturday, December 20, 2014

"If there are hoarders, and then there's everybody else, I guess I'm in the plebeian consumer camp."

An oldie but a very, very goodie. Sorry I missed it the first time around, and thanks to A for the link.

We'd been chatting about how different the "craft" world would be if all tastings (and the ratings derived from them) were truly blind -- if all you had was the liquid, sans the pre-knowledge of how rare/special/epochal others already believe it to be.

In a nutshell, hoarding is the physical manifestation of anti-egalitarianism, and as such, it's the hoarder's ignominy, not mine.

Against Hoarding, by Miles Liebtag (Beergraphs)

... There's a decent argument that hoarders drive some business at the retail level -- everyone loves traffic in the door, even if people are only coming in to see what's new or limited that week. Hoarders, however, are by their very nature fickle consumers with little retailer loyalty. They have their local spots like anyone else, of course. But they also spend a lot of time popping into bottle shops and big craft retailers to buy up whatever's being kept behind the counter that week, leaving less of the new hotness for that retailer's regular, loyal customers, the people in the store three or four times a week buying Lagunitas IPA or Left Hand Milk Stout. Most hoarders I know could also give a shit about breweries' bread-and-butter brands, those core beers that allowed the brewery to build a successful business and branch out into more adventurous projects like barrel aging, sours, etc. The intrinsic elitism of hoarding fosters an implicit dismissiveness of everyday beers: core brands are for the punters, the thinking seems to go, and no one gets excited about, say, a classic American stout that's been made consistently for 25 years. Unless you put that shit in a bourbon barrel. Then everyone needs that shit.

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