The Friday Mash (Boomer Sooner Edition)

One hundred and twenty-five years ago today, at high noon, thousands of people took part in the Oklahoma Land Rush. Within hours, Oklahoma City and Guthrie had instant populations of 10,000.

And now…The Mash!

We begin in Tumwater, Washington, once the home of Olympia Brewing Company. Today, it’s the home of a cluster of legal marijuana growers and processors—including one of the state’s largest.

Peru’s Cerveza San Juan beer brand has replaced the roaring jaguar with barnyard animals on its cans. The reason? The brewery is calling attention to the big cat’s endangered status.

Officials have reinstated beer at the University of Missouri’s “Tiger Prowl”, where graduating seniors eat barbecue, get free merchandise, and get ready to say goodbye to their classmates.

Anheuser-Busch InBev has acquired its eighth craft brewery, Devil’s Backbone of Roseland, Virginia. Established in 2008, Devil’s Backbone has won multiple Great American Beer Festival medals.

The Vietnamese love beer, and craft brewers have begun to enter the market. One new craft is the Pasteur Street Brewing Company, whose founders include Vick’s Florida native John Reid.

Forbes magazine’s Tara Nurin explores “pay-to-play” in beer distribution. Even after a high-profile crackdown in Massachusetts, she says it’s “a common yet whispered business practice”.

Finally, Don Russell aka Joe Sixpack takes us back to the bad old days of Prohibition’s “needle beer”: speakeasy owners injected alcohol into near beer—which was still legal in the 1920s. One customer, who sampled the stuff, compared it to 44-D cough syrup.

The Friday Mash (Vermont Edition)

On this day in 1791, Vermont was admitted to the Union as the 14th U.S. state. It is only one of three states that had previously been an independent republic; the others are California (very briefly, and unrecognized) and Texas (1836-45).

And now…The Mash!

We begin in Chicago, where the Field Museum has teamed up with Off-Color Brewing to re-create a purple-corn beer brewed by Peruvian women a thousand years ago during the Wari Empire.

In Europe, drought conditions resulted in last year’s hop harvest being one of the worst in decades. The resulting scarcity drove up prices, which hit small breweries especially hard.

Franchised beer bars may be coming to your town. Growler USA has two locations in Oregon and North Carolina each with more than 80 taps, and plans to open ten more this year.

“Endless Slogans”, an ad for Toronto-brewed Boneshaker Unfiltered IPA, pokes fun at beer ads by mocking every ad cliche from sexual innuendos to bad puns.

A German environmental group has alleged that the country’s most popular beers violate the Reinheitsgebot because they contain trace amounts of glyphosate, an ingredient used in herbicides.

Celeste Beatty is one of the few African-American women to own a brewery. Her Harlem Brewing Company’s beers will soon go on sale at 39 Wal-Mart stores in New York State.

Finally, Anheuser-Busch InBev finds itself in “investor purgatory” after reporting disappointing earnings last week. A-B InBev’s sales are–pardon the pun–flat, and currency volatility has upped the cost of sales.

Beer…By the Numbers

  • Breweries operating in the U.S. at the end of June 2013: 2,538 (98 percent of which are craft breweries).
  • Breweries in planning at the end of June 2013: 1,605.
  • People employed by craft breweries: 108,440.
  • Low-end beer’s share of the Chinese market: 85 percent.
  • Cost of a bottle of Tsingtao beer in Beijing: $0.32 U.S.
  • Cost of a bottle of Budweiser in Beijing: $0.96 U.S.
  • SAB Miller’s share of Colombia’s beer market: 98 percent.
  • Its share of Peru’s beer market: 94 percent.
  • American Homebrewers Association membership as of June 30: 38,347.
  • Percent increase over last year: 16.2.
  • India pale ales entered in last year’s Great American Beer Festival: 203 (the number-one category in number of entries).
  • Imperial IPAs entered last year: 128 (the number-two category).
  • Alcohol’s current share of America’s food budget: 13 percent.
  • Alcohol’s lowest share of America’s food budget since 1890: 5 percent, during the early years of Prohibition.
  • Its highest share since 1890: 20 percent, during the early 1890s.
  • The Friday Mash (Coach’s Corner Edition)

    Today is the 75th birthday of former football coach Jim Mora. Even though he turned two of the National Football League’s perennial losers into contenders, he’s best known for his post-game meltdowns. Paul’s favorite is this Zen-like rant: “You really don’t know. You think you know, but you don’t know. And you never will.”

    We begin in Britain, which doesn’t have an NFL franchise, but does have a new generation of cask ale drinkers. Twenty-five to 34-year-olds, women in particular, are discovering Real Ale.

    This month’s Session, an online beer discussion, is titled An Unexpected Discovery. It will be hosted by Mike Lynch of Burgers & Brews, and you’re invited to join.

    Peru’s government doesn’t have the same sense of humor as Brahma Beer’s advertising agency, which ran a spot poking fun at Lima’s endlessly-delayed light rail project.

    Dale’s Pale Ale was named one of the hottest brands of 2010 by Advertising Age magazine. The beer finds itself in the company of Burberry, the iPad, and Marvel Entertainment.

    Yes, there’s good beer east of the Cascades. Brian Kevin of Draft magazine online introduces us to small breweries in eastern Oregon.

    Finally, we hope that the Craft Beer Express catches on in Philly. Last Saturday, beer lovers could plunk down $10 to hop on and off a bus that stopped at 11 beer bars.

    NEWS (North, East, South, West)

    Time to hit the road, girls and boys:

    We lead off with Cole Premo of WCCO-TV, who serves up a list of the ten best Minnesota-brewed beers.

    Julia Burke, beer editor for the New York Cork Report, touts Rochester, New York, as “a diamond in the rough” for beer lovers.

    A new Indiana law allows microbreweries to sell beer on Sunday. That same law also requires everyone, regardless of age, to show ID.

    The Independent’s Rhiannon Batten locates England’s 50 best country pubs.

    Finally, as part of its series on unusual customs around the world, BBC News has video of an old Peruvian beer-drinking ritual.

    Powered by WordPress