I personally believe there is a time and place for every beer; from the stankiest and nastiest of swills to the ambrosia of the gods. Every beer has something to tell you if you are willing understand the context it was produced and consumed. That doesn’t mean that this has to be the time or the place where its strengths or weaknesses are made clear.
That being said, Jolly Good Fellows falls pretty heavily down on the side of the craft and microbrew side of things. Below is a simple Venn diagram that shows a visual representation of where we want to stake our claim. We realize there is a lot more diversity in the beer world but this gets the point across. (It is important to note that we have a strong favorable impression of imports also.)
We will spend a majority of our time exploring and celebrating the diversity of beer, reveling in the fact that for most of its existence beer has a heterogeneous history. We are witnessing the rise of this again right before our very eyes in America where micro and craft brewers have placed an emphasis both on creativity and quality.
This doesn’t mean that we will ignore macrobrews though. As a post-modern beer drinker, you simply can’t. Macrobrewing still has hegemony in the market; both in what is consumed and how beer is created. Their sheer size alone and global reach means they have incredible influence and a dominate position in price for ingredients. (This is particularly true with hops.)
They also wield incredible political clout. They are profitable big businesses that have survived for a long time and are marketing and lobbying powerhouses. At the very minimum they must be acknowledged for setting the “standard” to improve from and for serving as the monolith that micros and crafts needed to respond to.
So don’t be surprised when on occasion we explore these monoliths and their hold on the world, looking to understand their contributions, their context in the brewing world, and how they continue to influence how beer is both produced and enjoyed.
With all that out of the way, our main purpose here is to celebrate beer in all its wonderful diversity, creativity, history, future and our enjoyment of all of it. Thanks for reading and as always please share your thoughts in the comments!