• Craft vs. Crafty: A Statement from the Brewers Association

    It seems we’re not the only ones that dislike big beer using the term “craft beer” to push brands like Goose Island and Blue Moon.  The Brewers Association has also taken issue with moniker.

    The Brewers Association, the not-for-profit trade association dedicated to small and independent American craft brewers, issued the following statement regarding the increase in production and promotion of craft-like beers by large, non-craft breweries:

     

    An American craft brewer is defined as small and independent. Their annual production is 6 million barrels of beer or less and no more than 25 percent of the craft brewery is owned or controlled by an alcoholic beverage industry member who is not themselves a craft brewer.

     

    The community of small and independent craft brewers has grown as beer enthusiasts embrace new, diverse beers brewed by their neighbors and friends who are invested in their local communities. Beer drinkers are voting with their palates and dollars to support these entrepreneurs and their small and independent businesses.

     

    In 2011, small and independent craft brewers saw their industry grow 13 percent by volume; in the first half of 2012, volume grew by an additional 12 percent. Meanwhile, the overall beer industry was down 1.3 percent by volume and domestic non-craft was down 5 million barrels in 2011.

     

    Witnessing both the tremendous success and growth of craft brewers and the fact that many beer lovers are turning away from mass-produced light lagers, the large brewers have been seeking entry into the craft beer marketplace. Many started producing their own craft-imitating beers, while some purchased (or are attempting to purchase) large or full stakes in small and independent breweries.

     

    While this is certainly a nod to the innovation and ingenuity of today’s small and independent brewers, it’s important to remember that if a large brewer has a controlling share of a smaller producing brewery, the brewer is, by definition, not craft.

     

    However, many non-standard, non-light “crafty” beers found in the marketplace today are not labeled as products of large breweries. So when someone is drinking a Blue Moon Belgian Wheat Beer, they often believe that it’s from a craft brewer, since there is no clear indication that it’s made by SABMiller. The same goes for Shock Top, a brand that is 100 percent owned by Anheuser-Bush InBev, and several others that are owned by a multinational brewing and beverage company.

     

    The large, multinational brewers appear to be deliberately attempting to blur the lines between their crafty, craft-like beers and true craft beers from today’s small and independent brewers. We call for transparency in brand ownership and for information to be clearly presented in a way that allows beer drinkers to make an informed choice about who brewed the beer they are drinking.

     

    And for those passionate beer lovers out there, we ask that you take the time to familiarize yourself with who is brewing the beer you are drinking. Is it a product of a small and independent brewer? Or is it from a crafty large brewer, seeking to capitalize on the mounting success of small and independent craft brewers?

    Source: http://www.brewersassociation.org/pages/media/press-releases/show?title=craft-vs-crafty-a-statement-from-the-brewers-association

  • Don’t Let Big Brewers Win Beer Wars

    No Anheuser-Busch

    Anheuser-Busch getting bigger?  It seems that’s what they want to do.

     

    Editor’s note: Steve Hindy is co-founder, president and chairman of The Brooklyn Brewery. Brooklyn Brewery started in 1988 and is among America’s top 15 craft breweries.

     

    The proposed purchase of Mexico’s Modelo beer brands by the world’s largest brewing conglomerate, Anheuser-Busch-InBev, is causing deep concern among America’s craft brewers.

     

    Anheuser-Busch already controls about 47% of the U.S. beer market. Adding Modelo’s Corona beer and other brands would give it another 6%. MillerCoors, the other big player in the United States,controls about 30%.

     

    If the Modelo deal goes through, a duopoly would control more than 80% of the U.S. beer market.

     

    The concentration of market share in two global companies means they have tremendous influence over distributors and retailers. This gives an advantage to big brewer beer brands over small brands created by America’s independent craft brewers. Ultimately, with limited choices, the beer consumer loses.

     

    The Department of Justice is determining whether the sale would violate antitrust laws.

     

    As I understand it, Anheuser-Busch claims it would have no say in the marketing or sale of Modelo brands in the United States. Those functions would be left to Crown Imports, the Chicago-based marketing and sales company that is owned by Constellation Brands, the world’s largest wine company.

     

    In 10 years, Anheuser-Busch would have the right to buy Crown.

     

    It’s hard to understand how a brewery could own another brewery and not have some control over sales and marketing. Doesn’t the owner control the price of beer sold to the importer/marketer? Doesn’t the owner contribute to the sales and marketing programs and costs of the importer/marketer? Doesn’t the owner have some say over the hiring of personnel for the brewery it owns?

     

    And isn’t the owner responsible to its shareholders to ensure the brewery is maximizing shareholder value?

     

    America’s small brewers have been on a roll in the past decade, claiming more than 6% of the U.S. beer market since the craft brewing revolution began in the early ’80s. That 6% is divided by 2,400 small companies.

     

    The duopoly already has tremendous influence over beer distribution in America.

     

    In most markets, brewers have two choices, a so-called Blue and Silver distributor, who sells MillerCoors brands, or a Red distributor, who sells Anheuser-Busch brands. (The color codes describe the primary colors of the brewers’ labels.)

     

    Through so-called “equity contracts,” the large brewers prescribe how much money distributors spend to sell and market their brands. In some cases, they have the right to approve or disapprove the manager of the distribution company. In some cases, they have the right to approve the succession plan of the distributor. In some cases, they have the right to approve the sale of a distributor.

     

    Craft brewers constantly struggle to get the attention of these distributors.

     

    In the mid-1990s, the CEO of Anheuser-Busch, August Busch III, declared that he wanted “100% share of mind” from his wholesalers. Some Red distributors ejected non-Anheuser-Busch brands from their warehouses. Distributors who gave his 100% were given more favorable terms for their purchase of beer. August III is gone, but the new owners of Anheuser-Busch have called for distributors to get “aligned” with the brands they control.

     

    Large brewers also have control over some retail sales of beer. Many chain supermarkets and stores appoint “category captains” to determine which beers are sold in refrigerated aisles and which beers go on the warm shelves. If the category captain is a Blue and Silver distributor, MillerCoors will play a key role in choosing which brands get sold where. If it is a Red distributor, Anheuser-Busch makes the calls.

     

    This results in a tug-of-war between large brewers trying to get maximum placement of their brands and small brewers trying to get a spot. Obviously, a company that controls 53% of the U.S. beer market is going to have a better shot at shelf space than my company.

     

    Both members of the duopoly have wholly owned brands like Shock Top and Goose Island that are presented as craft brands. They own large shares of some other breweries like Red Hook and Kona. There is concern that these brands would get greater attention from wholesalers than independent craft brands, like mine. This can greatly limit the beer consumer’s choices.

     

    In sports venues like arenas and stadiums, the large brewers monopolize space. They typically have advertising contracts with the venues, and this results in their having a dominant share of the beer taps and other beer placements. If you want a Brooklyn Lager at Yankee Stadium or CitiField or the new Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn, you’d better be prepared to spend some time searching. Brooklyn Brewery is in those venues, but in a very limited way.

     

    Those are my concerns, and the concerns of other craft brewers. Obviously, I am not an attorney. I know little about antitrust law. I recently read a couple of books about the oil industry and learned that antitrust rulings in that industry have drawn a line for defining a company with too much market share.

     

    Given this, I am baffled by the state of the U.S. brewing industry. How did we ever get to a situation where two companies control 80%? And how can we allow them to control more?

     

    Source: http://www.cnn.com/

  • The Top 25 Beers of 2012

    The Top 25 Beers of 2012 photo: winemag.com

     

    The Top 25 Beers of 2012 photo: winemag.com

    The Top 25 Beers of 2012
    photo: winemag.com

    Wine Enthusiast Magazine has put together its top 25 beer list for 2012, and while all lists of this nature are subjective, there are definitely a few good ones in the mix.

    A quick breakdown of what was included in the judging:

    Beer Review Breakdown by Country:
    Belgium – 6
    England – 5
    Germany – 5
    New Zealand – 1
    Norway – 1
    Portugal – 2
    Scotland – 1
    Spain – 1
    United States – 95

    U.S. Review Breakdown by State:
    Alaska – 2
    California – 22
    Colorado – 11
    Delaware – 2
    Massachusetts – 11
    Maryland – 2
    Maine – 2
    Michigan – 4
    Missouri – 2
    New Hampshire – 2
    New York – 10
    Oregon – 10
    Pennsylvania – 2
    Texas – 2
    Utah – 8
    Virginia – 2
    Wisconsin – 1

    The Top 25 List

    1. The Bruery Saison Rue Belgian-Style Ale (Saison/Farmhouse Ale; The Bruery, CA)
    2. Traquair House Ale (Scotch Ale; Traquair House Brewery, Scotland)
    3. Sam Adams Utopias 10th Anniversary (American Strong Ale; The Boston Beer Co., MA).
    4. Left Hand Polestar Pilsner (German-style Pilsener; Left Hand Brewing Co., CO).
    5. Deschutes Hop Trip Pale Ale (American Pale Ale; Deschutes Brewery, OR)
    6. Uinta Dubhe Imperial Black IPA (American-style Black Ale; Uinta Brewing Co., UT)
    7. Dogfish Head Noble Rot (Fruit Beer/ Saison Hybrid; Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, DE)
    8. Weihenstephaner Vitus Weizenbock (Weizenbock; Brauerei Weihenstephan, Germany)
    9. Founders Bolt Cutter Barley Wine Ale (American Barleywine; Founders Brewing Co., MI)
    10. Odell The Meddler Oud Bruin Ale (AmericanWild Ale; Odell Brewing Co., CO)
    11. Stone Ruintation Tenth Anniversary IPA (American Double/Imperial IPA; Stone Brewing Co., CA)
    12. Ayinger Celebrator Doppelbock (Doppelbock; Brauerei Aying, Germany)
    13. Avery Annual Barrel Series Uncle Jacob’sStout (American Double/ImperialStout; Avery Brewing Co, CO)
    14. Port City Optimal Wit (Witbier; Port City Brewing Company, VA)
    15. Lindemans Cuvée René Grand Cru Gueuze Lambic Beer (Gueuze; BrouwerijLindemans, Belgium)
    16. New Glarus Two Women Lager (German-style Pilsener; New Glarus BrewingCompany, WI)
    17. Smuttynose Big Beer Series S’muttonator Double Bock Beer (Dopplebock; SmuttynoseBrewing Co., NH)
    18. St. Feuillien Saison Belgian Farmhouse Ale (Saison/Farmhouse Ale; St-Feuillien Brewery, Belgium)
    19. Jolly Pumpkin La Roja Artisan Amber Ale (American Wild Ale; Jolly Pumpkin ArtisanAles, LLC, MI)
    20. 21st Amendment Insurrection Series Monk’s Blood (Belgian-style Dark Ale; 21st Amendment Brewery, CA)
    21. Karl Strauss 23rd Anniversary Old Ale (Old Ale; Karl Strauss Brewing Co., CA)
    22. Boulevard Smokestack Series Tank 7 Farmhouse Ale (Saison/Farmhouse Ale; Boulevard Brewing Company, MO)
    23. Captain Lawrence Cuvée de Castleton Batch #5 (American Wild Ale; Captain Lawrence Brewing Co., NY)
    24. Brewery Bockor Omer Traditional Blond Ale (Belgian-style Blonde Ale; Brewery Bockor, Belgium)
    25. DuClaw Retribution (American Double/ Imperial Stout; DuClaw Brewing Company, MD)

    Download the full listing here in PDF format:
    http://www.winemag.com/PDFs/2012%20Top%2025%20Beers.pdf

    Source: http://www.winemag.com/

  • Brewing in South Korea: Fiery food, boring beer

    Here in the United States we are going through a renaissance in beer.  The craft beer craze is sweeping the nation, but that doesn’t necessarily hold true for the rest of the world.  In South Korea, for example, the country is limited (for the most part) to one of two brewing companies.

    The problem for South Korean boozers is that their national market is a cramped duopoly. Hite-Jinro and Oriental Brewery (OB) have nearly 100% of it. Their beers are hard to tell apart; their prices, even harder. At five out of five shops visited by The Economist, their main brands all cost precisely 1,850 won ($1.70) per 330ml can.

     

    Until 2011, regulations required all brewers to have enough capacity to brew well over 1m litres at a time. This in effect kept all but Hite and OB from bringing foamy goodness to the masses. Smaller producers were allowed to sell their beer only on their own premises.

    This is just the type of thing that we’re trying to prevent here at Indy Beers.  But even in the face of this duopoly, there is hope.

    However, only a handful of small brewers have risen to the challenge. One of them, Craftworks Brewing Company, is owned by a Canadian, Dan Vroon. Mr Vroon’s pub in Seoul is packed every night. But several hurdles still make it hard for him to sell his pilsners, stouts and pale ales more widely, he says.

    Of Course, this hope comes at a cost.

    Brewers are taxed heavily if they deliver their own beer. Craftworks’ unpasteurized brews must be kept chilled from the vat to the tap, which creates a problem. Cold distribution is a tiny, pricey niche. This is because the big boys don’t use it: their beers have their tasty, bureaucrat-bothering bacteria removed at the brewery. They can thus be delivered warm and then chilled in the pub.

     

    Punitive tariffs prevent brewing experimentation. The Korean taxman treats malt, hops and yeast as beer ingredients, which are subject to low import duties. Anything else you might put in the brew is deemed an agricultural import, and thus a threat to the nation’s farmers. “Speciality grains like oats aren’t on the approved list, so we must pay more than 500% if we want to use them,” says Park Chul, another frustrated brewer.

     

    Those who do not qualify for a wholesale licence have it even worse. Though they sell only through their own pubs, government inspectors place meters on their vats. These can become contaminated, causing costly stoppages. “It’s enough to drive you to drink,” sighs Mr Vroon.

    So next time you’re out at the pub having a great craft beer from an independent brewer, remember, not everyone in the world who has access to beer gets good beer.

    Source: http://www.economist.com/

  • Chain Restaurants Look to Craft Beer

    Big beer is getting the squeeze from big restaurants.   No longer is big beer the dominate tap handle at your local chain restaurant, instead these establishments are increasingly turning to craft beers for their beer selections.

    More signs that American culinary tastes are changing, or perhaps becoming more diverse: 15 Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG +2.24%) restaurants in Chicago have begun to sell locally-made “craft beers” on a trial basis, theChicago Tribune reports.

     

    Earlier this year, the pasta restaurant chain Noodles & Co. announced a similar policy, offering its customers craft beers and upscale wines.

     

    American craft brews are a big growth business. The Brewers Association reports dollar sales for the country’s small and independent craft brewers were up 14% in the first half of 2012, while the volume of craft brewed beer sold rose 12% in that same time period. Oh, and the number of total breweries in the U.S. is currently at a 125-year high.

     

    “Generally, most craft brewers are continuing to see strong growth in production, sales, brewing capacity and employment, which is to be celebrated during challenged times for many of today’s small businesses,” said Brewers Association Director Paul Gatza in a statement. “Plus, it’s a fact that beer drinkers are responding to the quality and diversity created by small American brewing companies. India pale ales, seasonal beers, Belgian-inspired ales and a range of specialty beers are just a few of the beer styles that are growing rapidly.”

     

    Industry experts say the trend of national chain restaurants selling local beer brands is hardly shocking news.

     

    “I would say it’s not surprising as all, given the growing popularity and the enthusiasm and the passion that’s being driven by the craft beer segment in the United States,” says Eric Shepard, executive editor at Beer Marketer’s Insights, which covers the beer industry. “It’s still only 6% of the total volume, but seems to grow under a lot more of that in terms of the passion and media coverage.”

     

    Shepard points towards the so-called “locavore” movement — where consumers prefer food, beverages and produce grown regionally — as a model for the national restaurant chains to consider.

     

    “I think some of the other restaurant chains have already adopted this to a certain extent,” he said, “where they give a certain amount of freedom to their franchisees to choose based on where they are and the local tastes and food as well. That they would do that in beer as well just makes a whole lot of sense.”

     

    But nothing is simple, and that’s certainly true when you talk about defining what exactly is a craft beer.

     

    The big brewers are creating their own craft beers — such as Blue Moon, produced by MillerCoors (TAP +1.23%) or Shock Top from Anheuser Busch (BUD +2.57%). “They see where the growth in the industry is and it’s been fairly explosive in crafts over the last four or five years,” says Shepard. “And they want to play in that space as well. Ultimately the consumer will sort all of this out.”

     

    Source:  http://money.msn.com/

  • A Great Beer Site: http://bloggersofbeer.com/

    Looking for a one stop shop for all your beer reading needs?  Look no further than http://bloggersofbeer.com/.  This site is a large collection of beer blogs from around the world that updates several times an hour with new content.  If you need some beer related reading material to get you through the holiday season http://bloggersofbeer.com/ is the site you want to check out. I’m really just amazed at the amount of new, original content that shows up.  The site doesn’t allow comments, as the intent is to feed traffic to the source of the content, but there is plenty of content on http://bloggersofbeer.com/ to keep you busy for a long time.  Have a look at the site and let us know what you think.

  • Is Pot Beer on the Horizon in Light of Colorado Marijuana Legalization?

    So as many of you may already know, hops (Humulus lupulus) and marijuana (Cannabis sativa) are both in the family same family (Cannabaceae).  We even have a shirt stating this fact:

    So with the two plants so closely related, and marijuana now becoming legal in Colorado (and Washington), it surely is only a matter of time before someone creates a commercial “pot” beer.

    A beer that will get you drunk and high sounds like a lethal combination, but it could be bubbling up in your neighbor’s garage.

     

    With the move by voters to legalize adult marijuana possession, cultivation and sales in Colorado as part of Amendment 64 Tuesday, the likelihood of pot beer is out of the question for commercial brewers, but already in the works by homebrewers.

     

    While commercial brewers have no plans to use marijuana in their beers based on the fact that brewers’ recipes are regulated by a federal government that still considers marijuana illegal, homebrewers have been, and are expected to continue, using marijuana in homemade beer.

     

    Boulder-based American Homebrewer Association Director Gary Glass said homebrewers have been using marijuana in homebrews before Amendment 64 passed. He is not sure how pot legalization will impact the homebrewing market. He noted marijuana could be an expensive ingredient to add to a beer.

     

    At a Boulder Dredhop Homebrew competition, Glass said he had the opportunity to sample a beer brewed with marijuana.

     

    Glass said he didn’t particularly like the beer and would not seek it out, but noted that with innovations coming out of the homebrewing community there is room for a whole new style of beer with marijuana.

     

    Zach Weakland, co-owner of High Hops Brewing and Hops Farm and Brew Shop, 6461 Colorado Highway 392, said, despite the name, they have no plans to brew with or grow marijuana. As far as homebrewers go, Weakland has heard of some brewing with marijuana. “I think it has already been going on and I think it will increase now,” he said.

     

    Sean Nook, homebrewer and owner of Black Bottle Brewery, said he has known brewers who have dabbled with incorporating marijuana into their beers, but has never tried it.

     

    “Hops and marijuana are in the same family, but totally different. Hops are meant as a flavoring bitter agent and the marijuana buds, I have been told by people, that it won’t work for some reason,” said Nook who has no plans to brew with the drug. “They (homebrewers) will do anything. I look to homebrewers for inspiration.”

     

    Active homebrewer Josh Grenz is the treasurer for the WeizGuys Loveland homebrew club, member of the Fort Collins Liquid Poets Society homebrew club and co-owner of Verboten Brewery, a new brewery in Loveland that received its federal license Wednesday and is expected to open in December. He is familiar with homebrewers using hemp in the brewing process, and noted there could be an increase in marijuana in brewing.

     

    Since the amendment passed Grenz hasn’t heard any talk among the homebrew community about using cannabis in beer, but noted there hasn’t been a meeting since Tuesday.

     

    The mechanics of making marijuana beer, and whether you can get high from it, are questionable. The Internet is littered with various recipes and tips on how to best incorporate cannabis tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, into a beer.

     

    Commercial brewers who distribute out of state, such as New Belgium Brewing Co., said they have no intentions of using marijuana to brew in light of Amendment 64.

     

    Source:  http://www.coloradoan.com

  • Sam Adams’ Utopias Beer Costs $190 A Bottle

    How much would you spend on a bottle of beer?  How about one that has been aged for 16 years?  From the Same Adams Website:

    Truly the epitome of brewing’s two thousand year evolution, Samuel Adams Utopias® offers a flavor not just unlike any other beer but unlike any other beverage in the world. The 2009 release is a blend of batches, some having been aged up to 16 years in the barrel room of our Boston Brewery, in a variety of woods. We aged a portion of the beer in hand-selected, single-use bourbon casks from the award-winning Buffalo Trace Distillery. The latest batch also spent time in Portuguese muscatel finishing casks, as well as sherry, brandy and Cognac casks. This flavorful, slightly fruity brew has a sweet, malty flavor that is reminiscent of a deep, rich vintage port, fine cognac or aged sherry.

     

    The history of Samuel Adams Utopias comes from the extreme beers of Triple Bock and Millenium that came before it. With those brews we began the exploration of aging beer in barrels for a different flavor contribution. With Utopias, we took that process to another level by introducing a variety of casks that the beer was aged in, each offering their own unique flavor. We also experimented with blending different vintages of beer to create its final character. The idea of aging in casks and blending was inspired by the techniques of whiskey makers in how they were able to craft the taste of their liquid from several of these elements. We expanded that notion to include casks of different origins. Applying these techniques to beer not only led to a completely unique beer, but also to a new taste experience.

    The beer comes in at about 27% ABV.  For me, that is just a little too much to spend on beer, but if a friend were to offer me some, how could I say no?

    Source: http://www.samueladams.com/

  • The Plot to Destroy America’s Beer

     

    Anyone who reads this site knows we’re not big fans of Anheuser-Busch, but it seems we’re not alone.  Bloomsberg Businessweek post a scathing article about the state of affairs with AB InBev (BUD) and the man in charge, Carlos Brito, CEO of Anheuser-Busch InBev.  It’s a great article, but it’s pretty long, so check out the source link below.  The article covers the cost cutting efforts of AB:

    For a number-crunching manager like Brito, an old, family-run company like Anheuser-Busch provided plenty of opportunities for cuts. He laid off approximately 1,400 people, about 6 percent of the U.S. workforce. He sold $9.4 billion in assets, including Busch Gardens and SeaWorld. AB InBev also tried to save money on materials. It used smaller labels and thinner glass for its bottles. It tried weaker cardboard for its 12-packs and cases. The old Anheuser-Busch insisted on using whole grains of rice in its beer. AB InBev was fine with the broken kind. “Our purchasing of rice has to do with how fresh the rice is, not whether it is whole or broken,” says Vallis.

    There is also talk of how AB buys what it can’t do itself:

    AB InBev is taking a similar approach to Goose Island, a small but respected Chicago brewery it bought in 2011 to combat the growing craft beer threat. Three months after the deal, AB InBev started brewing Goose Island signature 312 Imperial Pale Ale—named after a Chicago area code—in Baldwinsville, N.Y., where the area code is 315. Graham Haverfield, beer director at the Wine Library in Springfield Township, N.J., says he’s received an IPA made in Portsmouth, N.H.; a harvest ale made in upstate New York; and Belgian-style beers from Goose Island’s Chicago brewery.

     

    This creates problems for Haverfield. “If I’m asked upfront by a customer, ‘Have you had this?’ Well, I don’t know,” he sighs. “The last time I had it, it was brewed in a different place.” He’s still a Goose Island fan, but he doesn’t know what AB InBev is doing with it. “I have a problem with a craft beer like Goose Island being treated like a mass-produced brand,” Haverfield says. “It’s a slippery slope.” Vallis disagrees: “We want Goose Island to grow in a way that’s right for the brewery and the brands.”

    Essentially, AB may be a good business at making money, but they’re horrible at making beer.  Have a look at the full article and decide for yourself.

    Source: http://www.businessweek.com/printer/articles/78040-the-plot-to-destroy-americas-beer

  • World’s Strongest Beer is Just Released at 65% ABV

    Looking for a strong beer?  How about the strongest in the world?  The new beer “Armageddon” from Brewmeister Brewery in the UK comes in at 65% ABV.  From their website:

    The world’s strongest beer at 65%. Ingredients include crystal malt, wheat, flaked oats and of course 100% Scottish spring water. We then freeze ferment the beer to bring up the ABV. Consume this like a fine whisky.

     

    Despite being 65%, the beer has a lot of flavour – malty, hoppy, slightly sweet and lots of yeast still in the beer. Be careful though, smelling it is probably enough to put you over the limit!

    I guess by way of ingredients this is considered a beer, but strong is the (wo)man who can drink more than one.  But is something of this high volume of alcohol really needed in a beer?

    Brewmeister’s co-founder, Lewis Shand, defended his firm’s new beer and told STV it was intended to be savoured like a brandy, not swallowed in bucketloads.

     

    He said: “The Armageddon drink tastes very alcoholic, it is also sweet, hoppy and quite thick, and yes, it is very strong. All our other beers are around four or five per cent proof, and this new brand is meant to be enjoyed in small quantities.

     

    “We are certainly not encouraging anybody to drink it in pints. When it is sold, it will be in brandy-sized doses and that is how we recommend people try it when it comes on the market.”

     

    Brewery productions director, John MacKenzie, said the beer had a “viscous quality to it, due to the special freeze fermentation method, which we use to produce such a high alcoholic beer.” However, Shand cut to the chase when he was asked to describe the its potency.

     

    “The phrase “delivers a punch” probably doesn’t do it justice. “Delivers a supersonic-charged explosion and conveys the taster to Drunksville” is probably more appropriate,” said Shand, a 26-year-old graduate in law and psychology. “In some respects, it is closer to a liqueur than a beer, but it is classified as a beer and we are pleased with it.”

    Source: http://local.stv.tv/