This Week In Beer News: Funky Buddha and MIA Brewing Hire Brewers, Narrangansett Goes Retro, and Blue Moon Demands Respect
Another week down, another case of beer destroyed. This is not to say that this week in beer news didn't make you drink a few extra. On the weekends we hope that you at least didn't forget to chug.
Last week we saw a few local things going on: Funky Buddha and MIA Brewing hire brewers, which is always refreshing, and Saint Arnold eyes the Florida market.
In honor of Shark Week, Rhode Island's Narragansett beer is bringing back the can design featured in the movie, "Jaws". In the 1975 film, shark hunter Capt. Sam Quint crushes a can of Narragansett with one hand to intimidate the oceanographer played by Richard Dreyfuss. Ain't nothing like a little sharky nostalgia in beer.
John Bansley was stopped by police as he was walking with a case of his favorite swill, Milwaukee's Best. He said he was walking to Chicago after a fight with his ex-wife. The cops took him to his ex-wife's house, who insisted that he not drink anymore. A few hours later Bansley ended up in jail after calling 911 to report that his wife wouldn't give him any more beer, reportedly saying, "She took my beer ... All I got is beer to my name." Poor bastard. We feel you bro, but all craft beer lovers would agree she did you a favor.
Craft beer drinkers find this no surprise whatsoever. In fact, we are rather dumbfounded that this is actually news. According to a survey by Consumer Edge Insight, twenty-seven percent of respondents said they were getting "tired of the taste" of light beer. However, as this may seem like good news, other data suggests light beer drinkers are not moving on to better beer, but drinking more wine and spirits instead. In Gallup's annual Consumption Habits poll, 36 percent of respondents drink beer compared to 35 percent who drink wine -- a huge drop in percentage points for beer, which was up more than 20 points in 1992.
With Ireland's economy in one of the deepest recessions in decades, many people are unable to afford a pint of beer at the local pub, forcing them to stay home. Instead, they're buying it gas stations where it's cheaper. Because of this, more than 1,500 pubs have closed in Ireland. This is sad news for a country that prides itself on its pub culture. Let's raise our pints, say a little Irish prayer, and hope things get better them across the pond.
Now back to good news. Funky Buddha Brewery hired Miami Beach native Alex Postelnek. Alex is a graduate of the Seibel Institute of Technology, a renowned brewing school in Chicago. Postelnek not only knows how to brew fine beer, but has deep knowledge of the industry on an international level.
In an effort to keep itself from going completely under, the United States Postal Service is looking at the possibility of allowing people to mail alcohol, including beer, for a small fee. The move could rake in about $50 million for the agency and facilitate the trading of beer across country. Sending alcohol in the mail is currently against the law, not that we don't already do it anyway.
In an interview with the Houston Chronicle over the weekend, Saint Arnold Brewing Company owner Brock Wagner said he is looking to expand into Colorado and Florida. But he specifically excluded South Florida, saying it's a market that he doesn't understand. We're not sure what to think of this, considering New Belgium and Founder's brewing companies have planted their flags here. Whatever the case, we'd sure like to see Saint Arnold on the shelves.
Miami start-up brewery MIA Brewing has hired Michael Demetrus to be its brewmaster. Coming from Finch's Brewing Company in Chicago, Demetrus has over a decade of industry experience. He helped co-found Finch's three years ago and was operations manager and brewer there. At MIA, he will be head of brewing operations. He is set to arrive in Miami on August 7.
Last year a trade group of micro brewers named MillerCoors in a list of companies too large to be called craft brewers. This apparently didn't set well with the company, which cited strong sales and a 15 percent share of the U.S. craft beer market, and now wants a little respect. Calm down, MillerCoors, we'll give you a second taste. Company CEO Tom Long also said that Blue Moon has been around a lot longer than some of his craft beer rivals.
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