Beer Break Vol. 2, No. 38
American Beer Month III
July 11, 2002
You didn't receive Beer Break last week because it was the 4th of July and we
were out drinking American beer. For the record: On the fourth, we had a
brewpub IPA from a growler, Ommegang and a homebrewed smoked porter. Our
first beer of American Beer Month was Anchor Liberty Ale.
With Coors and Anheuser-Busch's Michelob Amber Bock providing advertising
support, ABM III has higher national visibility than the first two versions
-- though its presence in local markets will vary. Sadly, ABM in 2000 and
2001 was met with so little enthusiasm some places that those who tried to
promote it there have backed off.
It's working in Tennessee, where the Boscos family of brewpubs (three, with a
fourth to begin selling Boscos beer in Little Rock, Ark., later this year)
has been solidly behind American Beer Month since the beginning. Two of the
pubs are participating in Realbeer.com's ABM Challenge Cup next week.
Drinkers and employees at the two pubs are already bantering back and forth,
and reading their exchanges
is a treat. We've been squarely behind American Beer Month since the idea was
hatched, but sometimes it is hard to explain to beer drinkers -- whether they
favor mainstream products or specialty beers -- why ABM matters. These
Chuck Skypeck -- a partner who was the first brewer at all three Boscos and
now is in Memphis -- provides particularly thoughtful insight:
"All kidding aside, just for a moment, I would like to make a more serious
post to the 'Boscos vs Boscos' web page. One post stated that Nashville 'has
a German Brewmaster' I believe that it is always easy to misinterpret
comments on the Internet, (and I hope I am not misunderstanding this comment)
but I did take this comment to mean that somehow Nashville was superior to
Memphis because they had a 'German brewmaster.'
"If this is the case, it brings up why we celebrate American Beer Month in
the first place, which is to try and get the general public to understand
that the world's most diverse and exciting beer culture is found in the
United States of American. We have the world's largest number of breweries
producing the world's largest variety of styles. We have both tradition and
innovation in our breweries. Ask Michael Jackson where he finds, across the
board, the most interesting beers in the world. His reply is the United
"This is not to disparage or discredit Germans or German beer culture, just
simply to point out that in the United States we have a beer culture with
both established and developing traditions that are as vibrant as anywhere in
"That being said, I will say, proudly and chauvinistically, that Boscos
Squared has an American brewmaster.
"For those of you that do not know, Fred is a naturalized American citizen
who just so happens to be born in, well, Fred, where were you born? (I have
heard several stories) and trained in Germany as both a brewmaster and
maltmaster. I would love to hear Fred's comments on this matter. My guess is
he considers himself an American brewmaster educated in Germany. Another
example of our diverse beer culture in the United States, another reason to
celebrate American Beer Month."
WID MER HEFWEIZEN
Brewed by Widmer Brothers Brewing in Oregon
Celebrator Tasting Panel notes:
The original American-style wheat beer still tastes great today. It starts
with a rich, spicy floral nose and rich, herbal flavors. A pleasant hop bite
up front opens up with a full, citrus mid-taste and a clean finish. A wow!
SIERRA NEVADA WHEAT BEER
Brewed Sierra Nevada Brewing in California
Celebrator Tasting Panel notes:
Floral, citrusy sweet nose with a great, pillowy head and nice lace.
Lemony-cream taste with slight tart hop bite and a nice, lingering finish.