I didn't read Chelsie's piece until after I'd already written these words.
AFTER THE FIRE: Before the deluge, or knowing how this whole beer business started.
... My contrarian instincts tell me that the beer climate is ripe for a modest, thoughtful return to basics, emblemized by a relatively small list of classics on draft, and in bottles and cans, to be accompanied by some good, old-fashioned beer education, which seems to have been tossed aside in the era of mile-wide, inch-deep “craft” fandom.
It would be churlish to differ with Chelsie on stylistic grounds, because all the relevant points are there for consideration.
She is describing reality as it is viewed by the digital white whale chasers, and if the digital white whale chasers view their scene as reality, so it must be -- it says so right here, on the Internet -- except the contrarian in me stubbornly believes that this viewpoint skips past the default setting of a significant chunk of better beer lovers.
Hence my current fascination with piloting the vessel straight back to the future, and establishing a pub beer program that is as stolid and set as the remainder of "craft" beer is flashy and ever-changing. Lots of people are drinking Victory Prima Pils and Saison Dupont. If not, these brands wouldn't be available.
Why not consciously appeal to beer lovers who don't chase the white whale, don't stockpile swap booty, and just wish to enjoy a good beer or three over conversation?
Maybe it's impossible, but maybe it's just being undervalued. Maybe it isn't being tried, though maybe the tried and true is tomorrow's freshest approach.
Death of the Flagships: But Why?, by Chelsie (Stouts and Stilettos)
I must admit. I have had this post swirling around in my head for well over a year now… maybe even longer. I’ve often talked about the downturn of flagship beers in great length to many-a-folks who belly up to the bar with me and on Twitter with fellow craft beer minded individuals. Now it’s time to document it all and get it out to the masses, because it’s a recent phenomena that’s really disheartening to some and to others it’s “goodbye. good riddance!” It’s an emotional parting of something classic and sacred yet on the other hand a parting of something boring and forgettable.