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Industry

Stirring it Up

12.22.2007 | 3 Comments

I’ve been becoming a bit of a health nut over the past few months. Don’t fear – I’m still drinking plenty of good beer (Guinness is good for you..Right?) but I’ve cut back on over-processed foods in favor of organics, whole grains, and flax seed (keeps you regular). Anyhow, my wife’s cousin works for a

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Trappist monks say “Don’t drink our beer”

11.29.2007 | 6 Comments

The WSJ (that’s Wall Street Journal for you uneducated people out there) ran a great story today about the Trappist monks at St. Sixtus monastery in Westvleteren, Belgium. Monks have been brewing Westvleteren beer at this remote spot near the French border since 1839. Their brew, offered in strengths up to 10.2% alcohol by volume,

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Addendum to “Part of something bigger”

11.21.2007 | 3 Comments

Normally I don’t repost people’s comments, but our friend Brad (the self-proclaimed Unrepentant Individual) has done gone and made a great point ? which happens to back up my position: One more way the internet is changing the world. Beer used to be dominated by the guys who could make fancy commercials and put them

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Part of something bigger

11.21.2007 | 1 Comment

The Thanksgiving Holiday has given me a chance to catch up on some reading. I’m about halfway through Christopher Mark O’Brien’s Fermenting Revolution. Much of the first half of the book on the history of beer and revolution seems to me to be very conjectural (such as: “Maybe Jesus turned water into beer instead of

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We feel the pinch of the hop shortages

11.15.2007 | 6 Comments

Stories of the hops ? and rumored increases in beer prices ? have found their way onto NPR. Kristen sent in this report, which discusses the decreases in hops production and what that means for microbreweries (I’ll give you a hint: it’s bad). We at MNB have dealt with the hops shortages in our own

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The Big Guys Go “Craft”

10.26.2007 | 3 Comments

The Wall Street Journal published a recent article showing that the three major US breweries (Anheus r-Busch, SABMiller and Molson Coors) have grown their “craft” beer sales by nearly 45% in 2007, while independent craft brewery sales have only risen 16%. There are two lines of thinking in the craft beer world about this rapid

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Shortages galore

10.24.2007 | 5 Comments

Beer prices are on the rise. Hop shortages worldwide have already driven up the price of hops fourfold for some varieties. Our friends over at Yours for Good Fermentables have written a good piece, and more can be found here from Seattle P-I. Unfortunately this isn’t the only crisis plaguing beer production in Georgia. Those

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It’s not the fact that Stella sent us a press kit, it’s the principle of the thing

09.14.2007 | 3 Comments

Many big brewers have started to tap into us humble bloggers in an effort to market themselves more effectively (most notably Flying Dog). To this end, Stella Artois recently contacted us and wanted to send a press kit. Now, we’re not huge fans of Stella beer, but the fact that a big brewery contacted us

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Small breweries in a shrinking world

09.07.2007 | 0 Comments

Roger over at The Potable Curmudgeon has been blogging up a storm lately. One of his most recent entries discusses the ability of small breweries (think gallons, not barrels) to do much of their business internationally as opposed to locally. In his words: [I]n Europe at present, impossibly small breweries are mining a lucrative export

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Blind Bat Brewery: a brewery similar to ours, in that it is not an actual brewery yet

08.15.2007 | 0 Comments

Though not technically a brewery, Blind Bat seems to have quite the head start on MNB. I was reading The Daily Catch today and found an interesting post on Blind Bat, a Long Island upstart focusing on “artisanal ales.” I have to admit, I have terrible associations with Long Island (rich, snotty girls with ugly

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Why I love the business of brewing

08.13.2007 | 1 Comment

Most industries are cutthroat. Brewing is no exception, at least at the top. However, the craft brewing and micro scene is a bit different. Beer is not treated as a commodity, but a differentiated product. And making this product is so time-consuming and variable-dependent that no one brewery could possibly brew enough different kinds of

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Out-ninja’d by the big boys?

08.09.2007 | 0 Comments

Many of you have heard of our Roundhouse Pale Ale, our humble homage to all of the great American ninjas. You may not yet have heard of “Guinness” or “Harp,” but these “Irish” brews are now infiltrating our culture, and even threatening the same ninjas that define us. Thanks to The Barley Blog for the

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I officially hate Carlsberg

07.12.2007 | 3 Comments

And that’s after trying only one of their beers (Tetley’s). I recently read an interview in The McKinsey Quarterly with Carlsberg’s senior VP, Alex Myers. The article outlines the steps Carlsberg (which encompasses about 100 different beer brands) is taking to combat proliferating channels, media and customer segments. A few tasty morsels from the interview:

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Good marketing does not equal bad beer

07.11.2007 | 2 Comments

Al over at Hop Talk has just written an excellent post on the power of marketing in beer. The brunt of the argument is this, from writer Bill Virgin: Put samples of half a dozen or so mass-market American beers before a panel of drinkers in a blind taste test, and even the most confirmed

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Update: Georgia’s breweries under fire

07.03.2007 | 0 Comments

As many of you know, Georgia is currently considering some legislation to make our state’s beer laws even MORE lame. There is the distinct possibility that brewery tours and tasting rooms will be limited in serving a meager 2 oz of any beer, up to 16 oz total. While this primarily affects Sweetwater, Atlanta Brewing

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Save Georgia’s m crobrewery!

06.14.2007 | 1 Comment

I have gotten multiple emails today calling for action against an initiative being voted on in the Georgia Department of Revenue. In a nutshell, there is a chance that microbrewery tours in Georgia could become severely restricted in the amount of beer each person can sample. The cap would be 2 oz per beer, with

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Fosters: Australian for “Urine”

06.10.2007 | 0 Comments

So I’ve been “Down Under” (in Australia) for the past week and am finally getting ready to head home. First off, I’ve gotta say that the Aussies are one friendly bunch. I actually mentioned my impression in passing to someone at dinner last night and was informed that they have recently been surpassed by the

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Beerducation Part 2

05.20.2007 | 2 Comments

Not to be outdone by Jeff, I have made a few book purchases of my own to add to our ever-growing Beer Knowledge Library (ribbon cutting ceremony this August). First, Fermenting Revolution by Chris O’Brien. I became interested in the book after stumbling upon Chris’s blog, dedicated to “drinking beer and saving the world.” I’m

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Beer = Energy

05.04.2007 | 0 Comments

A recent AP article highlights collaboration between a Foster’s brewery in Australia and a bunch of scientists. They figured out a way to convert brewery waste water (generally higher in sugars) into clean water and energy. I’m thinking Joel (Mr. Operations) needs to figure out a way to do this for us. With our monster

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Who knew that Brooklyn had something to offer us

04.26.2007 | 4 Comments

The MNB gang has been circulating beer books for awhile as a form of general knowledge building. Beer School (Hindy/Potter) has recently been passed on to m by our pal Joel. This book chronicles the rise of the Brooklyn Brewery. While I’m not necessarily sold on Brooklyn’s beer (their chocolate stout tastes like pure alcohol),

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Aaaagh! There’s whiskey in my beer!

04.12.2007 | 2 Comments

We thought we’d seen the last of the whiskey porter. That dreaded frat brew that was more liquor than beer. I guess that’s what happens when you pour half a handle of Maker’s Mark into a mere five gallons of fermenting beer. If you haven’t caught the reference yet, be sure to check out Joel’s

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All signs point to YES

04.02.2007 | 1 Comment

Jeffrey at Wort’s Going On Here? recently posted about an article outlining the positive trends in craft brewing. His comments: According to a Boston Patriot Ledger article, craft beer sales have risen 30% versus mainstream beers 2% increase, driven by the American public’s desire to enjoy premium items, like artisanal foods, gourmet popcorn and ice

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