A Few More Statistics

A few of the incredible professional beer community members

Because we study and gather qualitative psychographic data, it’s interesting to read quantitative stats. Fascinating!

  • As of March 2012, there were 1,989 operating breweries in the USA.
  • American small and independent breweries provide well over 100,000 jobs. Think of the end number when you add the large brewery employees!
  • The small and independent breweries produced somewhere in the range of 11.47 million barrels in 2011.
  • Over 4000 beers were entered in the 2012 World Beer Cup competition, which included 95 styles from 56 countries judged by 215 from 29 countries.

To celebrate our American Beer landscape, look for festivals, events and other beer related goings on. WEB is involved in many focused on fun education. If you’ll be at SAVOR June 8 & 9 2012 in Washington DC, be sure to look for us there.

Stats courtesy of Brewers Association

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Beer Connections

Whenever we head to a festival, it’s simply a matter of time (usually in minutes) before we connect with someone who:

  • Is someone we already know in the beer community
  • Is an immediate connection to another person in the beer community we know

Willimantic Brewing (CT) Fans

Walt was right: It’s a small world after all and the beer community is even smaller. This is another characteristic of the beer community that makes the pursuit of WEB enjoyable. The professional colleagues, the consumers, the vendors and suppliers, the distributors and retailers. We all make up an incredible web of folks progressing the high quality beers we know and love. And the ones we don’t yet know in a taste bud way yet can’t wait to embrace.

Our picture today is two beer lovers at this summer’s Southern Oregon Craft Brew Festival in Medford, OR. They are sporting Willimantic Brewing shirts. Connection: David Wollner, the good man who owns and operates the brewery, invited us to stay at his home when we were on our cross country trip. And we saw each other again most recently at SAVOR.

Message today: Beer community people are connected and happy to connect with others who share their passion. It’s one of the biggest attractions to the group, me thinks.

And as beer educators, we always look very forward to further deepening these connections and relationships and building new ones.

Queue the music please…

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Beer, Chocolate and Gelato

Today’s post is inspired by Fred Bueltmann, whom I had the pleasure of meeting and drinking and eating with last week at SAVOR. We were on deck for a Friday Salon, the last one of the evening.

National Building Museum, site of 2011 SAVOR

Fred is a terrific person with a gracious crowd manner. Given that the evening had progressed well for all in the salon room (read: some had a small glow on so they were chatty), he was also excellent at moving straight ahead regardless of the banter in the room. For the most part, the guests were very tuned in.

Fred chose to feature and talk about Beer & Chocolate. While it may be old news to some in the beer community, it’s important to remember that there are still millions of people, and millions of those people are women, who don’t think to pair these two goodies together.

The chocolates were from Gail Ambrosius, Chocolatier Extraordinaire, and the beers were of course from Fred’s brewery, New Holland.

I’ll be so bold as to say the entire room enjoyed the pairings, the information and the great delivery of Fred with his flight of 5. They were:

  • Golden Cap Saison Ale with Cointreau Truffle
  • Dragon’s Milk Ale aged in oak barrels with Shitake Truffle
  • Black Tulip Trippel Ale with Lemongrass and Ginger Truffle
  • Pilgrim’s Dole Wheatwine with Sea Salt Caramel Truffle
  • Night Tripper Imperial Stout with Cinnamon & Cayenne Truffle

Wow. Wow.

Tonight then WEB is offering Beer and Gelato for our women’s event. We offered it in answer to a huge positive response based on an Imperial Stout malted milk shake at an event last summer. It should prove to be enlightening since most consumers don’t think to pair beer and gelato (or chocolate), much less with dessert in general.

Cheers and chocolate to Fred. Looking forward to keeping the education machine rolling forward.

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Still Savoring

Julie and Steven of Boulevard Brewing

Thanks today to Steven Pauwels & Julie Weeks of Boulevard, Ken Grossman & Father Thomas of Sierra Nevada and New Clairvaux respectively, and Fred Bueltmann of New Holland.

Thanks equally to Nancy Johnson and the BA, to Stephanie Clayton & the great Federal City Catering Staff.

Why the recognition?

Because they were the reason I was at SAVOR, starting with Nancy. As the Events Director of the BA, she’s the lead on driving the events the BA puts together. I am grateful she responded to my inquiry to help in any way at this spectacular event. I’d have been happy to sweep the floors afterwards. She gave me an opportunity to be part of the Salons. It was fascinating, very fun and another terrific enhancement to the entire event.

High expectations were all exceeded

Steven, Julie, Ken, Father Thomas, and Fred were all the crux of the Salons. Julie helped me get set up for Steven, and the rest were the easy to assist fine featured speakers in the salons. The Salon sessions were tastings sessions full of engaging information from the presenters. Relaxed, beautiful settings allowed the attendees to really get an intimate bubble of time with these remarkable contributors to the craft beer community.

Stephanie and her entire staff were uber helpful, well trained and ready to assist with a nod, and genuinely good people. I’m often impressed by the service staff of any event. They are the ones who make it all tick, handle details most of us don’t even think about, and pull it all off making it look easy. (And often I’m miffed at why more people don’t recognize how important these people are.)

In any (SAVOR) event, my gratitude to participate in the event to them all. They made it easy and even more fun than I had thought I’d have (and I have a high fun-meter expectation).

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Heading to SAVOR 2011

The end of this week will find me in Washington DC, our nation’s capitol, being a small part of the incredible SAVOR event. Hope to see some of you ‘back East’!

The Brewers Association press release shared (full release here):


An American Craft Beer & Food Experience

Brewers Association Adds Second Night to Popular Washington, D.C. Event


Now in its fourth year, SAVOR: An American Craft Beer & Food Experience returns to Washington, D.C. and expands from one to two nights. Presented by the Brewers Association (organizers of the Great American Beer Festival®), SAVOR, the benchmark of beer and food events, is a must-attend happening for beer lovers and foodies alike.

Attendees will sample craft beers from 72 small and independent craft brewers who team up with a duo of expert chefs to pair each craft beer with delicious savory and sweet dishes. Educational salons [where I’ll get to assist] and private tasting salons will provide additional opportunities for attendees to interact with some of America’s most talented craft brewers and chefs.


Friday, June 3 and Saturday, June 4, 2011, 7:30 – 11:00 PM


National Building Museum
401 F Street NW
Washington, D.C. 20001


SAVOR’s rapid growth is strong evidence of the public’s appetite for craft beer along with food that complements and accentuates this artfully brewed beverage. In 2010, the event sold out in less than one day, which is why SAVOR has expanded to two nights for 2011. This year promises to be another memorable event for attendees looking to taste the best that America’s small and independent craft brewers have to offer.

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A SAVORy List Of Breweries

SAVOR your beer

June 3rd & 4th will find an incredible cross section of American Craft Breweries participating in a uber tasty and classy event: SAVOR.

This will be my first year attending, the 4th year it’s been in existence and truly, as the tag line states, “An American Craft Beer And Food Experience.” Here’s the list of participating breweries that will be in attendance. They’re picked by lottery due to the overwhelmingly popular opportunity for craft brewers across the country.

Beer is a universal beverage. And libations bring people together. Partner that with food and you’ve got an unbeatable combination sure to delight, please and inspire.

Save the dates – get ready to scoop up tickets (they go fast!). See you in DC.

Photo by Kate Parks

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