I blog primarily over at "geosciblog" (http://geosciblog.blogspot.com), I am doing this one for fun. It is inspired by 30+ years of beer can collecting and having tried more than 3,000 different American beers during that time. “. . . And beer was drunk with reverence, as it ought to be.” — G. K. Chesterton

Friday, July 13, 2007

Twelve Beers That Changed America

Not the same list as the previous post, these are just my humble opinions and are listed in no particular order.

1. Budweiser - Among other things, Anheuser Busch grew to be No. 1 because of savvy marketing and innovations.
2. Miller Lite - Born as Meister Brau Lite (in Chicago), it wasn't the first low calorie beer, but it was the first nationally-distributed one in 1974.
3. Krueger Special Beer and Krueger Pale Ale - The first beer and ale in cans in 1935.
4. Christian Moerlein - the first regionally-marketed modern American beer by an established brewery (Hudepohl, from Cincinnati) that was brewed to the German Reinheitsgebot standards, containing only barley malt, hops, yeast, and water.
5. Anchor Steam - Anchor Brewing Co. was on the verge of closure when Fritz Maytag purchased it and began a decades-long resurgence. Among their offerings are a barleywine (Old Foghorn), a Christmas Ale, a Pale Ale (Anchor Liberty), and other seasonals. Though not of the "microbrewery" classification, Anchor products are well-produced craft beers and ales.
6. Coors Banquet Beer - the first fad beer which people would actually smuggle from the Western U.S. to the East, in large quantities. The Coors family was wise enough not to go into debt to continually add capacity to their Golden, CO brewery, during their fad growth period.
7. Ballantine India Pale Ale - this was the first hoppy American-brewed ale for most people of our age group.
8. Yuengling Porter - the lone, East Coast holdout of this dark ale style(I don't think Stegmaier Porter was brewed continually, but I could be wrong), by the oldest brewery in the United States. Other breweries had porters in the past or on draft, but most surviving breweries had dropped this style in bottles.
9. Samuel Adams Lager - Helped make craft brews more of a mainstream concept. Introduced people to a wide variety of beers.
10. Pabst Export Lager/Pabst Blue Ribbon - the first canned beer by a national brewer, in 1935. Pabst Brewing Co. was afraid to jeopardize their Blue Ribbon label as cans were still new, so they changed the name to Pabst Export Lager, until sales took off.
11. New Albion Ale - Among the first offerings of the first microbrewery in 1976.
12. Billy Beer - No, don't hate me for this one. The concept was not new, but naming and marketing a beer based on the President's brother was new. Blame it on the Falls City Brewing Co. of Louisville, KY and the collectors' headaches that followed on the MSM.

Any others to add?

Ten Craft Beers That Changed America

From the Appellation Beer Blog post, here is the list with my own brief comments. In my own useage, "microbreweries" are among those small breweries (some of them not so small anymore) that were started after the first one, New Albion Brewing Co. of Sonoma, CA opened its doors in 1978.

You need to go to the source for the original "flavor" of the post. Comments in italics are from the original post.

Submitted for your consideration, here 'tis the list:

1. Anchor Steam - This is not a true "microbrewery" beer, as the brewery had been in business since 1865, but represents the preservation of an indigenous American style. The other Anchor brands were the first introduction to many Americans of holiday beers, barley wines, American Pale Ale, American wheat beer, American porter, and more.

2. Sierra Nevada Pale Ale - This hoppy pale ale became a worldwide standard for its style, an American Pale Ale.

3. Samuel Adams Boston Lager - Some purists may quibble with this choice, as it began as a contract brew and in some locales, the Boston Brewing Co. brands are still being brewed at older, established breweries. Samuel Adams brands also introduced Americans to a wide array of ale and lager styles.

4. Fat Tire - New Belgium Brewing Co. - I haven't had this one is a few years, so I defer to the original post.

5. New Glarus Wisconsin Belgian Red - The words of the original post - "It seems unlikely there will be a pivotal moment for American beer like the 1976 “Judgment of Paris” was for wine. But Belgian Red besting beers brewed in Belgium in the 1996 Brewing Industry International Awards was a pretty big deal."

6. Pliny the Elder - "The first Double IPA, and now Double/Imperial IPA is an official style."

7. Goose Island Bourbon County Stout - "A rarity in 1995, but if BusinessWeek is right then barrel-aged beers have reached the tipping point."

8. Dogfish Head World Wide Stout and Samuel Adams Utopias - These are examples of "extreme beers", of which Samuel Adams Triple Bock was the first in 1994. From the original post (first referring to Samuel Adams): ..."continued to brew stronger versions, but in 1999 Sam Calagione of Dogfish Head made a stronger beer. He held the record a few weeks before Sam Adams introduced Millennium (for the upcoming millennium). That morphed into Utopias, now stronger than 25% abv. The back-and-forth focused mainstream attention on the concept of Extreme Beers."

9. Cuvee de Tomme - "Michael Jackson’s review (the beer expert) in 2000 understates the influence this beer continues to exert." (Honestly, I haven't the slightest idea what this brand is about)

10. Dale’s Pale Ale - This very hoppy pale ale won (in a can) a blind tasting conducted by the New York Times.

Of these, I have had #1-4 and #10. As I don't get to travel as much as I used to, I haven't encountered some of these.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?