A Good Beer Blog


Have you read The Unbearable Nonsense of Craft Beer - A Rant in Nine Acts by Alan and Max yet? It's out on Kindle as well as Lulu.

Maureen Ogle said this about the book: "... immensely readable, sometimes slightly surreal rumination on beer in general and craft beer in particular. Funny, witty, but most important: Smart. The beer geeks will likely get all cranky about it, but Alan and Max are the masters of cranky..."

Ron Pattinson said: "I'm in a rather odd situation. Because I appear in the book. A fictional version of me. It's a weird feeling."


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Craig -

You would think that this wouldn't be common knowledge to someone not involved with the inter-workings of beer buying in New York, such as myself. Surprisingly enough, this is a pretty common topic of conversation on the barstool. To the consumer, the whole thing isn't apparent at the grocery store or even at beer stores. Where you see it is at pubs and bars, especially those that cater to beer. There is always a contentious relationship between the bar owners and the wholesalers. Pubs that specialize in craft beer want to have a wide selection to offer, and the breweries are more than happy to supply that, however, the wholesalers are really only interested in what sells. That's nothing out of the ordinary, right? It's simple supply and demand. Here's where it gets insidious. Not only do the wholesalers push their big sellers... they also push styles. If hop bombs and high ABV is where the selling trend is moving, then that's what is offered. To the detriment of the brewery and the bar owner. The wholesaler will offer what styles they want to sell. The brewery can't argue, at that point they have no control over what is offered to and the bar owner is legally bound to purchased any specific brewery's beer from it's designated wholesaler. My local pub has, maybe, twenty taps. Of those twenty, a few weeks ago, three were barley wines. How do you turn over 15% of your draught beer as barley wines? I have a number of friends who buy for their respective pubs, they're constantly lamenting, not only the distributors, but the system in general. The stories I've heard would astound you. It's like a mob movie. Only in New York would the lawmakers try and bust up a monopoly by creating another monopoly.

Craig -

Holy cow! Two non-sarcastic replies in a row! I gotta cut back on the Vitamin B.

dave -

Same type of legal situation is in effect in MA. People are trying to get that changed however: http://beernews.org/2011/02/massachusetts-brewers-guild-pushes-legislation-to-modernize-liquor-law/

DanSmallbeer -

Friend of mine looked into distribution for his Ontario brewery. The way he understood it, his distribution deal in the NY area would have been a "for life" contract. That completely scared him off.

Charlie -

You just can't blame people on these situations. The economy is hitting all of us hard.