Interesting But A Little Dry (like a Brut)
3 out of 5 stars
I’m pretty into the world of beer. I also write a beer blog when I’m not working or reading audiobooks. When I saw that there was a book coming out about “How Beer Explains The World” I was intrigued. In execution it was… okay. That’s the proper wording of it. Sure, there are parts that were fascinating and were well thought out and executed but the combination of some misses here and there and a narrator that didn’t work for me made this book fall just a little short for me.
The premises inside were interesting, and I found some of them more intriguing than others. Having graduated from college with a BS in Marketing I had to take my fair share of Economics classes and they can be a bit dry. Beeronomics falls into the same issue but makes it a little easier to learn/listen to by making it about beer. If I hadn’t almost slept through my Econ classes before I probably would have loved to have heard this first.
As I mentioned above, the narration fell a little short for me. I just couldn’t get into his voice and cadence and it would throw me off. I know that others won’t have any issues at all, but for me, it didn’t work.
Overall though, if you are interested in interesting analogies from the beer world to the rest of the world then this book is for you. The audio might work for you too, listen to the sample and see for yourself!
As a part-time amateur designer – I have to mention that the cover really caught my attention. So great job on that. It really made me interested in what the book had to say.
As someone who still really needs to take the dive into home brewing – I knew I had to read this book. I don’t know what’s holding me back (other than the fact that I work a full-time job and write both a book and a beer blog in my downtime. Along with being married and wanting to start a family). But, homebrewers always find time to make their beer and I really want to get into it. I think if my dad was closer we would have already done numerous batches together and figured it out, but I digress.
Knowing that I wanted to get into homebrewing lead me to this book from Tantor Audio. I was super excited that they’ve been producing/releasing a ton of beer-related content lately and I had to jump on The Secrets of the Master Brewers. I kind of wish that I had this sucker in paperback or hardcover since I think it would be both a good reference and one of those “proud to own” types of books.
I’d never heard of Alworth before this, but I will be checking out his other work along with any other blogging or online stuff that he’s done. He has a great ‘voice’ and makes telling a non-fiction book easy to read. Pair that with the narration done by Stephen Bowlby and you have a great book that was easy to listen to.
I will most likely pick up the kindle version of The Secrets of Master Brewers (when publishing it was priced at 2.99 on Amazon) since there were some points I would like to reference back to, but if you own that I believe that the audiobook would only be 7ish dollars — well worth it in my opinion. You can listen to this while you’re out there having a brew day in your basement or garage.
About the Author:
Jeff Alworth is a writer living in Portland, Oregon. He writes about beer, cider, and occasionally, politics. His books include The Beer Bible (Workman), Cider Made Simple (Chronicle), and The Secrets of Master Brewers (Storey). His books have twice been cited by the North American Guild of Beer Writers as best book, and in 2016 the Beer Bible was named best wine, spirits, or beer book by the International Association of Culinary Professionals.
Brewers Association, Beer Institute, Distilled Spirits Council of the United States, American Craft Spirits Association, Wine Institute and WineAmerica praise majority support in both House and Senate for Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act
Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act Reaches Backing from 51 Senators
WASHINGTON, DC— Leaders of the Beer Institute, Brewers Association, Distilled Spirits Council of the United States, American Craft Spirits Association, Wine Institute and WineAmerica released the following statement after Senator Jim Inhofe (R-Oklahoma) became the 51st member of the United States Senate to officially endorse the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act (S. 236). Senator Inhofe co-sponsoring the bill means that now a majority of members from both the House of Representatives and United States Senate support this legislation.
“America’s small craft brewers are incredibly proud and appreciative of the strong bipartisan and bicameral support that we have received from the United States Congress,” said Bob Pease, President and CEO of the Brewers Association. “We are small Main Street manufacturers located in virtually every Congressional District in the country, and employing more than 130,000 Americans. We truly are an American success story built on the passion that our small brewers have for their craft and their communities. Members of Congress see that passion, determination and success, and want to foster it. That is why more than half the United States Congress has co-sponsored the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act. We are hopeful that this consensus legislation can be enacted this year.”
“Beer is bipartisan, and I want to thank the broad coalition of Senators and House members from across the country for supporting this common sense legislation that will provide critical tax relief to America’s brewers and beer importers,” said Jim McGreevy, President and CEO of the Beer Institute, which represents brewers, beer importers and supply industries. “The beer industry helps to support more than 2.2 million American jobs in every congressional district across the country. I look forward to Congress taking up the bill and moving it to President Trump for his signature so that brewers and beer importers can continue to invest in their businesses to meet consumers’ demand for beer.”
“As the distilling sector continues its growth with more than 1,200 operating distilleries nationwide, lawmakers clearly appreciate the important role these distilleries play in creating jobs, boosting tourism and supporting agriculture,” said Distilled Spirits Council President & CEO Kraig R. Naasz. “Passing this much-needed tax reform legislation will spur further investment and job creation by reducing the excessive tax burden on distillers small and large.”
“California wine is a signature industry for our state and nation. This legislation will simplify and reduce the tax burden on our 4,700 wineries, which produce 85% of U.S. wine,” saidRobert P. (Bobby) Koch, President and CEO of Wine Institute. “As the very epitome of value-added agriculture, wine and vineyards represent a long-term commitment uniquely tied to the land, generating jobs, tax revenue, trade, tourism and international appeal.”
“Wine is truly an all-American beverage produced in all 50 states. There are now more than 10,000 wineries with grapes from over 670,000 acres preserving precious agricultural land, The American wine industry’s total economic impact of nearly $220 billion includes 1.7 million jobs and $75 billion in wages,” said Jim Trezise, President of WineAmerica, the national association of American wineries. “We are grateful that so many Senators see wine as an economic engine as well as a delightful beverage that enhances the quality of life.”
Introduced by Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Roy Blunt (R-MO) in January, the bipartisan legislation creates a fair and equitable tax structure for brewers, winemakers, distillers and importers of all beverage alcohol, which will allow them to continue to invest in their businesses and grow jobs across the country.
H.R. 747, identical legislation introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Representatives Erik Paulsen (R-MN) and Ron Kind (D-WI), has also garnered 281co-sponsors from both sides of the aisle.
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Craft brewers across the country are enthusiastic about the legislation:
“At around 1,000 barrels projected for 2018, on the surface, tax reform for a company our size doesn’t seem like such a big deal. However, that assumption could not be farther from the truth. Tax reform initiatives like CBMTRA directly impact the workable cash flow that allows for small producers like us to build infrastructure. Expanding infrastructure is essential to growth and job creation. Small breweries like ours are providing jobs, supporting families, and building an American industry to replace those that have dried up. It’s cyclical. The tax savings help us purchase more equipment while creating more manufacturing jobs. Additional labor and equipment allow us to create more beer. Creating more beer requires more positions to aid in sales of the product. Ultimately, more sales equate to additional tax revenues. When it comes down to it, the abilities that breweries have been afforded with recent legislative changes concerning the brewing industry and tax relief have opened up vehicles for growth. It has allowed us to have a higher cash flow that is immediately reinvested into the business. By continuing tax relief efforts, breweries like Zeroday can continue to grow and help support the people and places they employ and populate.” – Brandalynn Armstrong, Zeroday Brewing Co. Harrisburg PA
“Double digit annual growth, keeps us in a constant state of hiring and production/ construction. Relief from bi- weekly debt of over $100,000 would result in additional hiring, bricks and mortar construction, environmental improvements and economic stability for this growing business. 60 million dollars of impact in this rural struggling region is important.” – Deb Carey, New Glarus Brewing, New Glarus WI
“With the CBMTRA’s reduction in federal excise tax, we would offer a combination of pay increases, job creation and increased innovation in our beer program, which would sell more beer and grow our company.” – Leah Wong Ashburn, Highland Brewing Company, Asheville NC
“The Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act would allow our brewery to reinvest in equipment to grow our business. Specifically, with one year’s savings we could add a new tank to increase our annual capacity by 20%. The ripple effect is the addition of more jobs and purchases of raw materials.” – Megan McKay, Peacetree Brewing, Knoxville IA
“We make about 14,000 barrels per year. That tax reduction would yield our company in the neighborhood of $50K. I would immediately invest in another sales rep and another (American made) tank if this (CBMTRA) becomes law. I know that I am not alone among my fellow brewers. I imagine the vast majority would re-invest.” – Dave Fougeron, Southern Star Brewing Company, Conroe TX
“CBMTRA would have a significant impact here at Due South. While we are a fairly small brewery (about 5,000 barrels per year), we do compete in the large market as our beer is available in draft and in package (cans). We don’t have the marketing budget the big beer companies have so it’s a constant struggle to get our beer on the shelf and an even bigger one to keep it there. Additional tax savings would allow us to put more folks to work so we can continue to grow our business and help ensure the security of the 24 employees already at the brewery.” – Mike Halker, Due South Brewing Company, Boyntan Beach FL
November 4 is the 19th Annual ‘Learn to Homebrew Day’
—Celebrated by Beginner, Hobbyist and Professional Brewers All Over The World—
Boulder, CO • October 17, 2017 – On November 4, the American Homebrewers Association (AHA) celebrates the 19th annual Learn to Homebrew Day, an opportunity for homebrewers to draft their non-brewer friends and family to learn how to make beer at home. Hundreds of fun, educational events are held at homes, breweries, shops and clubs worldwide. Over 300 local celebrations and more than 4,000 participants are expected for this year’s celebration both in the U.S. and abroad.
“AHA Learn to Homebrew Day brings together thousands of people from all over the world, and we encourage anyone who enjoys beer—from brewing beginners and hobbyists, to professionals, to those who might be curious about homebrewing and interested in trying something new—to get involved,” said Gary Glass, director, American Homebrewers Association. “It’s exciting to see the continued growth in popularity of the hobby, which, for beginners, is really easy to get started.”
The AHA offers a variety of resources to help people of all skill levels begin brewing. Among them is Brew Guru™, a free mobile app which delivers money-saving deals on beer, food and homebrew supplies, plus the finest homebrew recipes on the planet. Membership is not required to use the app.
Additional beginner-friendly resources from the AHA include:
Let’s Brew: Access tips and tutorials on making better beer and tasty recipes.
AHA Forum: Ask and answer questions on homebrewing with the AHA community.
How to Brew by John Palmer: Learn from the definitive guide to making quality beers at home.
Learn to Homebrew Day was started in 1999 by the AHA to promote homebrewing education in America. The event has now expanded globally, with people participating and hosting their own events around the world. To be part of the celebration, find an event nearby or register your own.
The American Homebrewers Association (AHA) has worked on behalf of the homebrewing community since 1978 and celebrates a membership of more than 46,000 homebrewers. The American Homebrewers Association organizes events including Homebrew Con and the National Homebrew Competition. The AHA also publishes Zymurgy magazine and offers the Brew Guru™ mobile app. The AHA is part of the Brewers Association (BA), whose independent craft brewer seal is a widely adopted symbol that differentiates beers by small and independent craft brewers. The BA’s Brewers Publications™ division is the leading publisher of contemporary and relevant brewing literature for today’s craft brewers and homebrewers.
Beer lovers and anyone interested in making their own beer are invited to learn more at HomebrewersAssociation.org. Follow the AHA on Twitter, and join us on Facebook and Instagram.
The Brewers Association is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, or marital/familial status. The BA complies with provisions of Executive Order 11246 and the rules, regulations, and relevant orders of the Secretary of Labor.
America’s Small and Independent Brewers Aim to Buy Anheuser-Busch InBev
–Take Craft Back, Seeking $213 Billion, Is Largest Crowdfunding Campaign Ever–
Boulder, Colo., October 16, 2017—It’s official: The Brewers Association (BA), the not-for-profit organization that represents America’s small and independent brewers, has announced the craft brewing community’s intent to Take Craft Back from Big Beer. The #TakeCraftBack campaign—launched at TakeCraftBack.com—seeks to crowdsource the funds to buy Anheuser-Busch InBev, the international conglomerate that has been busy acquiring small breweries across the country.
Over the past several years, Big Beer has been attempting to buy their way into the craft beer movement by acquiring small breweries at a rapid rate and using their acquisitions to invent craft brewing bona-fides.
The Take Craft Back campaign features a not-yet-superstar, Andy—an avowed lover of craft beer—who has stated that his affinity for craft beer makes him highly qualified to serve as a campaign spokesperson.
“Since 2011, Anheuser-Busch InBev has quietly acquired 10 small and independent breweries, but they won’t tell you that on their packaging,” said Andy. “Just try to name all 10 without Googling…exactly. Big Beer creates an ‘illusion of choice,’ but we are presenting them with a reality check—and hopefully, at the end of the day, with a real check too.
Join the Movement—Let’s Take Craft Back! - YouTube
“Independent craft brewers refuse to be muscled out by Big Beer,” Andy continued, “And we are uniting on an unprecedented scale to take on Big Beer and their efforts to make it harder for beer drinkers to find their favorite independent craft beers at their favorite bars, liquor stores and restaurants.”
Anheuser-Busch InBev, which is worth an eye-popping $213 billion, represents the biggest—and the most powerful—of Big Beer, so Take Craft Back aims to make them an offer they can’t refuse.
For full details on the campaign and how to contribute, visit TakeCraftBack.com. Pledges will only be collected after all $213 billion has been secured. Until then, free swag will be distributed to all contributors and perhaps a few toasts will be raised along the way.
Beer lovers everywhere can spread the word with hashtags #TakeCraftBack and #IndependentBeer.
Outer Banks Brewing Station in Kill Devil Hills, NC
Beer God’s Notes
I had a feeling that this place was going to be busy and it was. We visited Outer Banks Brewing Station at around lunchtime and it was packed. We had about a half-hour wait, which didn’t feel too rough at all.
Once we were seated, I ordered a flight of beer looking to try the biggest variety of beers I could. I went from a blonde ale all the way to my typical IPA. The beers weren’t jump out of the glass amazing, but I’ve definitely had a much worse beer. There was a lemongrass beer that was SUPER lemony, but I would venture a guess that it would taste amazing after some yard work or for hanging out by the pool. The IPAs were okay — they were balanced but needed to be a little more hop-forward for me to enjoy them more.
Now, this is where the review takes a turn for the good: the food. The food at Outer Banks Brewing Station was phenomenal. Everyone I ate with got something different and they all loved it. I happened to get fish and chips (not sure if that’s what it was called or not), but it there was a ton of fish on the plate. More than I could eat, and I can eat.
Overall, come for the drinks, but definitely order the food. There were four different orders at our table and all four were loved. That’s a good choice for food if I say so.
The Outer Banks Brewing Station restaurant and brewery began as a concept in 1992 while the founders, Eric Reece and Aubrey Davis were Peace Corps volunteers alongside Tina Mackenzie in Thailand. Aubrey had grown up spending summers at his grandparents’ place on the Outer Banks, and felt it was the perfect place to start a brew pub. The Outer Banks Brewing station is now a staple in the OBX restaurant landscape.
Eric and Aubrey had developed an interest in home brewing, and Eric worked at a brewery with Scott Meyer in Berkeley, California. As their concept grew, they envisioned an environmentally friendly restaurant that celebrated the uniqueness of the Outer Banks and its history. The Brewing Station sits at the site of the original JK’s, very popular and unique in its day. They have tried to stay true to their original idea:
“INNOVATIVE BREWING, ENVIRONMENTAL CONSCIOUSNESS”
The building itself, designed by architect Ben Cahoon and constructed by Carolina Beach Builders, is a modern interpretation of a turn-of-the-century Lifesaving Station. The bar represents the lifesaving boat, that pointed toward the sea, is ready to be deployed down the tracks to save the crew of a floundering ship. The tracks are made from beach bricks, part of a modern day casualty of the sea. Tina started collecting the beach bricks, and Eric, tired of moving them, had them sunk into the floor!
Another person instrumental in the brew pub is Scott Meyer, a master brewer out of Berkeley, California. Formerly a vintner, Scott is a national and international gold medal winner in brewing competitions. He will be on hand to answer any questions, and help you become experts in the finer points of beer and the brewing process.
Christina Mackenzie earned her baking certificate at the California Culinary Institute, in Berkeley. She brings lots of experience baking desserts, breads, and wedding cakes, and also coordinates special events and caterings.
Lost Colony Brewery and Cafe in Manteo, NC
Beer God’s Notes
Going into Lost Colony, I had a feeling that this was going to be more of an “old” style place with more British and Irish versions of beer. I was right (I didn’t read that it was that kind of brewery until I went to write this review).
The inside of the “bar/brewery” part that we went to (off to the right) had a real Irish Pub vibe going for it. It was dark with lots of wood everywhere. The atmosphere was friendly and easy going for sure. It was family friendly (there was a family with a kid or two when we were there) and the beer selection was pretty good.
Obviously, if you like British-style beer, this is the place for you. I didn’t try all the beer because I know that I’m not a huge fan of some of those styles, but the beers I did try I enjoyed. Especially the Manteo Porter. LOTS of coffee in this porter, and really easy drinking. It drank like that first cup of coffee in the morning. Easy and fulfilling.
I also tried the Holy Hand Grenade, and that was a really nice interpretation of a Russian Imperial Stout. It wasn’t overly boozy and warm, but it had a nice body to it. It drank a little too easy for being up there in ABV.
Overall, one of two brewery options in the Outer Banks, and my favorite for beer. I did not try the food, so I can’t weigh in there. Nor did I even go over to the cafe/food area of the establishment. If they made a fish and chips that matched their English beer styles — I might have been in heaven.
The Lost Colony Brewery in downtown Manteo specializes in British and Irish style beers. We use Marris Otter malt as our base and then add various combinations of Black Patent, Brown malt, Crystal malt, and Roasted Barley depending on the individual beer. Fuggles, East Kent Golding and Challenger are the hops we use. Our brew house is a 2 Barrel RIMS system filling two barrel fermenters.
Easily one of the best burgers I’ve had in a long time. The burger was cooked to perfection along with the many different choices of fries. I got the old bay seasoned ones while my wife and in-laws got the house seasoned one. They were all good. There are so many choices for burgers that you might get confused but I can tell you that the burger with an egg on it was amazing.
They were busy when we arrived but the service was excellent. There was never a moment where I thought we were waiting for the waitress.
The beer menu was excellent. As a craft beer blogger I’m always worried I’m not going to find beer that I want or like somewhere. That was not a problem at 80/20. The draft list was good and the bottle list was even better. Lots to choose from and a good amount of variety too from stouts to kolsches.
If I return to Norfolk I will be returning to 80/20 for sure.
At 80/20 we strive to use the best ingredients that we have at our disposal. All of our beef is sourced from Leaping Waters Farm in Shenandoah, VA and certified grass-fed and grass-finished. We utilize local proteins and produce available to us.
Our objective is to support our area’s local farmers and their products to provide a healthy, unique, and cost-conscious experience. We boast over 100 beers supporting every local brewery that we can get our hands on.