Drunken Speculation

Hot Beer Trends to Look Out For in 2015

It might be the end of January but it’s never too late for a listicle looking at the year ahead.

Hating on breweries

It’s going to be big this year but where to start? There’s

The five year chart is even worse

If there’s one thing I hate, it’s the destruction of shareholder equity by an incompetent board of directors.

  • Route 2 Brews in Indiana. Hint: “L.S. ESB” was originally named “Leg Spreader ESB”. That’s something I want to put in my mouth.
  • Any number of recent, future or potential acquisitions by AB-Inbev (or Lion) because craft beer is a loving, all-inclusive community and when you sell out to the corporate oppressors, you shit all over the community. Bah, who needs you? You were only raising the average level of quality anyway. At the end of the day, I just want pedestrian beer that I could make and to pay a premium for it. Is it too much to ask to get real craft beer?

The great thing about hating breweries is not only does it make you feel big and clever, it also makes choosing a beer to buy much easier.

Purple beer

I don’t know who’s idea it was to take eggplant shavings and add them to the boil but it was a dumb one. Now I can’t seem to go anywhere without a bartender trying to shove a sample of purple beer down my throat. It’s starting with purple IPA but inevitably, there will be purple strong Belgian ale, black purple IPA and imperial purple saison before the year’s out.

Moar brewpubs in Brisbane

Hey, I’m on board. It’s clear that craft beer has reached a permanently high plateau of sales that will never decline and I want in on the fifteenth floor. Assuming the OGLR gives me a liquor licence to operate out of the wardrobe* in the spare bedroom of my flat, I feel a Drunkspec brewpub will be a great addition to the New Farm/Newstead beer scene.

So much potential

So much potential.

It’ll be just as spacious as The Scratch, just as well lit as Tomahawk (when the cupboard doors are closed) and the beer quality will be equal to that of Yardbird, although that is a very high bar to aspire to. There’s already plenty of distressed wood, which is going to be the hot new interior design finish, replacing the exposed brick seen in super-unique venues like Super Whatnot, the Regatta, the Embassy, Hoo Ha Bar, the Mill, Kerbside, Woolly Mammoth, Statler & Waldorf, the Brewhouse, Cardigan Bar, Bitter Suite, three million other sub-60 person bars and for all I know, Brunswick & Ann but I wouldn’t know because I’ve never set foot in there.

Our beer menu will initially consist of pruno (“a recently revived traditional style made only from the finest local ingredients”), a bourbon-barrel-aged purple double IPA-saison hybrid (I will begrudgingly join the trend like a cranky Jim Koch) and an Australian pale ale (“a gentle introduction into the world of craft beer”).


A sneak peak at some of the brewing equipment.

*I sense a Narnia theme coming on: the Aslan Alehouse? Mr Tumnus’ Tavern? Dawn Treader Divebar? The Lion, Witch, the Wardrobe and the Creepy-old-uncle-slash-probable-molester-in-the-first-book Craft Beer Bar? Stop me if I’m boring you.

Sentient yeast

While I think developing a yeast that can mill, mash, boil and pitch itself is a great idea on paper, I can see a few flaws. For example, once the yeast figures out that we basically plan to asphyxiate it in it’s own excrement, I can see a violent, oozing inter-species revolution being a major issue this year and the human race may not be able to deforest/pollute/greenhouse gas our way out of this one. They just had to play God. You fools, you’ve doomed us all!

Everyone was so worried about zombies, they didn't see the sludge coming.

Everyone was so worried about zombies, they didn’t see the sludge apocalypse coming.

Styles will be assigned a gender

Sexism in beer, and society in general, was a hot topic in 2014. In 2015, I hear that the new BJCP guidelines will address this by clarifying how one is to refer to beers. The BJCP currently has twenty-eight classes of style guidelines. Even class numbers will be given a masculine gender, along with a masculine vocabulary, and odd class numbers a correspondingly feminine gender. Meads and ciders can adopt whatever pronoun is politically correct at the time for transgender people.

pocahontasFor example, you might be down the pub and say

“Boy, this American pale ale is so good, it’s like a beery metaphor for myself. I wish he could be my eromenos.”

(Ed: incidentally, I may now be on a government watchlist for that link. I hope you at least blew a bit of air out of your nose in amusement)

“You see, the mainstream media never talks about how men are expected to take on dangerous jobs, or fight wars, or how suicide rates are higher for men. It’s always ‘millennia of patriarchy’ and ‘horrible gender inequality this’ and ‘rape that’. Because it’s a femi-nazi conspiracy, man. Also, I hate this stout. She’s a slut of a beer.”

Soon it’ll be OK to put hyper-sexualised women on beer labels again because certain types of beer will literally be female.

Beer geeks will continue to lose their shit over stuff that doesn’t matter

This isn’t a prediction because it’s not even the end of January and what has been foreseen has already come to pass. The threatened suing of Sierra Nevada by Lagunitas (from what I could gather went long the lines of “something something kerning something IPA something how very dare they”) and the sale of Elysian to AB-Inbev caused noticeable consternation amongst the crafteratti. I could deal with the three dozen retweets of the same thing in my Twitter feed in the morning if only it didn’t come with the moralising on top. People, please, not before I have caffeine in my system. I won’t provide examples but if you’re disappointed that a business deal that has no impact on your whatsoever went ahead, you need to re-examine your priorities.

For fuck’s sake people, it’s beer. It’s a consumer product, not an ideology.

Sigh. I guess one continuing trend from last year is that I’ll get repeatedly pissed off for no good goddamn reason.

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