Melvin Brewing on Beer Culture
Many social traditions and activities are very associated with drinking beer, such as playing cards, darts, or other games. The consumption of beer in isolation and excess may be associated with people drinking away their troubles, while drinking in excess with company may be associated with binge drinking.
The story of craft beer is the story of America’s broken love affair with suds. As said, brewing is an age-old art, and actually came to this country before, well, independence, with record of the first known brewery in New Amsterdam (aka NYC) in 1612. (Of course Native Americans were not only here first, they were fermenting first, in this case an early alcoholic beverage made from corn.)
Let's talk about a little history here..
As agriculture and later industrialization took hold of the young nation, so too did a love of beer and brewing. The nineteenth century saw huge growth in the number of American breweries, not to mention an influx of immigrants and other beer styles (including the German import, lager) which took an especially strong foothold). And while there was some evidence of consolidation—small breweries being absorbed into bigger ones—brewing was still a diversified industry in the nineteenth century.
Repeal Prohibition!But by 1920, a little thing called the Temperance Movement had mutated into the great, big, federally-mandated monster known as Prohibition. And while alcohol didn’t quite disappear during that time, small American breweries took a major hit. Nor did they entirely recover when Prohibition was repealed in 1933: industrialization saw even more rapid consolidation of breweries, all while lighter lager emerged as the dominant style. Brewery numbers shrinking, light lager appeal growing—bad news for variety in American beer.
But then a funny thing happened. With only 45 independent breweries left in 1978 (89 total breweries), a small but enterprising group of home brewers started brewing beer themselves, reviving styles that were no longer widely available. See, by that point, due to increases in travel and a couple World Wars, Americans had been introduced to the still robust beer drinking cultures of Europe. But when they got home, beer drinking options were extremely limited. Homebrewing – legalized by Congress in 1978 – was the answer.
Of course, given the revelatory deliciousness of well-made beer, the leap from home to professional “craft” brewing didn’t take long. Something like Melvin Brewing.
“Craft Brewer,” is a term that can earn a brewery certain rights, marketing cachet, and even tax breaks, so defining what qualifies as a craft brewery is pretty essential. And that’s what the Brewers Association does, with three words: small, independent, and traditional.
Of course, what these words refer to has actually changed over time, and for good reason: the craft industry is growing. But let’s take a look:
- Small, for instance, used to mean a production output limited to 2 million barrels per year. By 2014, it was 6 million. And in their update, the BA added an alternative percentage measure—basically a “craft brewery” could only produce 3% of the market, meaning if the market output grows, a craft brewery can grow right along with it.
- Independent means basically the same thing—only 25% of a brewery can be owned by anyone not identified as a craft brewer.
- But traditional definitely changed in 2014, with the BA now defining it has having a “majority of its total beverage alcohol volume in beers whose flavor derives from traditional or innovative brewing ingredients in their fermentation.”
Around the world
All over the world, beer is consumed. There are several breweries in the Middle East countries as well, such as Iraq and Syria. There is also breweries in African countries and other remote countries such as Mongolia as well.
Getting an appropriate beer glass is considered desirable by some drinkers. There are some drinkers of beer that may sometimes drink out of the bottle or can, while others may choose to pour their beer into a glass. Drinking from a bottle picks up aromas by the nose, so if a drinker wishes to appreciate the aroma of a beer, the beer is first poured into a mug, glass, or stein.
Similar to wine, there is specialized styles of glasses for some types of beer, with some breweries producing glassware intended for their own styles of beer.
The conditions for serving beer have a big influence on a drinker's experiences. An important factor when drinking is the temperature - as colder temperatures will start to inhibit the chemical senses of the tongue and throat, which will narrow down the flavor profile of beer, allow certain lagers to release their crispness.
The process of pouring will have an influence on the presentation of beer. The flow rate from the tap, titling of the glass, and position of the pour into the glass will all affect the outcome, such as the size and longevity of the head and the turbulence of the bar as it begins to release the carbonation.
The more heavily carbonated beers such as German pilseners will need settling time before they are served, although many of them are served with the addition of the remaining yeast at the bottom to add extra color and flavor.
The rating of beer is a craze that combines the enjoyment of drinking beer with the hobby of collecting it. Those that drink beer sometimes tend to record their scores and comments on various internet websites.
This is a worldwide activity, as people in the United States will swap bottles of beer with those living in New Zealand and Russia. The scores may then be tallied together to create lists of the most popular beers in each country as well as those throughout the world.