Crapft beer case rested

Last week’s post on Crapft Beer, containing such lines as:

…in order to find a niche in a very busy space, crapft beer people have all gone a bit bonkers.

and:

Let me be very clear here, crapft brewers. There is absolutely no need for any further forays into experimentation.

polarised opinion and prompted some differing reactions.

But then, arriving in my inbox today, was proof that I WAS COMPLETELY CORRECT:

Does your dog experience pangs of jealousy when he sees you enjoying your favourite craft brew? Bottom Sniffer, a beer for dogs that just launched in the UK, seeks to put that concern to rest.

The serving suggestion is 1 bottle per day, “as a drink, over food, in their favourite bowl or on a beer mat,” states its creators, Woof & Brew, on their new website. They add, as anyone who’s gone toe to toe with someone twice their size knows all too well, “you may wish to slightly alter this if you have a Great Dane or a Pomeranian”.

u wot m8?

OK, so this is the arse end (pardon the pun) of the spectrum, but it is wholly symptomatic of the entire business, and exactly what I was talking about last week.

bottom_sniffer_beer_for_dogs

I said that crapft brewers were trying to find their niche by adding bizarre ingredients to make their product “different”, and lo and indeed behold:

it’s concocted from non-fermented beer wort with natural chicken flavoring, bladderwrack extract, and herbs like burdock and dandelion

Eww. But it still probably tastes better than most of the crapft beers meant for humans. And, at “just” R70 per 330ml bottle, the ridiculous price feeds right into my narrative as well.

Are you listening yet?
Hmm?

Crapft beer

I know I’m going to be in trouble for this one. And I fully recognise that I will be ridiculed for being horrendously uncool (again), but someone has got to say it, and it looks like no-one else will dare to can be bothered.

Craft beer is overrated. MASSIVELY overrated.

What started out as a fight back against the big breweries and produced some really lovely beers, became a huge movement – fuelled by hipsters and society’s sad need to be seen being achingly trendy – is now past its sell by date. We were out at the Devil’s Peak Brewery last night, and while I’m certainly not suggesting that they are any more at fault than anyone else (and while we had a wonderful evening) the beer was crapft.

The food was really good. Feisty chilli poppers and excellent (if a little small) burgers.

But when people – beer drinking men – are choosing to leave their beer because it tastes so awful, rather than finish it before ordering something else, well, you’ve got a problem.

The issue here for me (and let me be clear: others agreed last night), is that the craft beer market is now saturated. It has been for a while. And in order to find a niche in a very busy space, crapft beer people have all gone a bit bonkers. They are brewing with weird hops from Bolivia, Moldova and the Antarctic. They are adding wild and wonderful ingredients to their brews in order to make them different: oranges, cloves, honey, wood from wine barrels, port, jack russells, mangoes – the list goes on. And yes, it makes your beer taste different, it makes it taste wholly individual.
But it also makes it taste like kak. The object can like to be defeated.

Let me be very clear here, crapft brewers. There is absolutely no need for any further forays into experimentation.
Our longing for something simple like a Black Label or (perish the thought) a Castle Lite draught, expressed while we were in the HQ – the flagship establishment – of one of the biggest names in crapft brewing in the country clearly indicates that this has all gone too far now and actually got a bit silly.

And you can argue that this falls into Uber Cash and Halal Hot Cross Bun territory. It only affects me if I allow it to. I can simply continue with my mainstream beer drinking and allow others to endure enjoy the latest crapft beer. And yes, you’re right. I’m just disappointed that something that started so well and with good intentions has clearly gone right off the rails.

Am I concerned that crapft beer will push SAB and the like out of the SA market? No. Because – much like the Noakes diet, owning a sodding beagle, and gluten intolerance – crapft beer is merely a fad for the rich to enjoy.
It’s just that if the current trends continue, they’re going to have to put on a bigger and bigger act to pretend that they actually are enjoying it.

ADDENDUM: The Tall Accountant (for he was also present last evening) has requested that I add that the prices for the crapft beer last night were overly reasonable, being of the order of R22 for a half measure of crapft beer and somewhere around R32 for a full 500ml measure of crapft beer. This I am happy to do.

Hipster 6000

I’m sitting with my dad, watching some obscure sport (it’s egg-chasing) and drinking a fusion-hops blended craft beer from a small brewery perched in a cliff in Cornwall.

I might have to grow a beard to complete the stereotype.

Fraser’s Folly

Next time you’re down in Agulhas, find yourself a few bottles of this:

image

And then drink all of them.
Marvellous stuff.

One One Eight

Now I like beer as much as the next man, but I’m not quite as fussy as some when it comes to the trendy side of beer: “craft beer”. I love my Darling Brew Bonecrusher, but then I love my SAB Carling Black Label. I quite enjoy Steph Weiss, but I’m also more than happy with a mass-produced Windhoek.

It’s beer. I like beer.

Craft beer is a rapidly growing market though, as the video below will testify. But who exactly is drinking it – and moreover why – are they drinking it? Presumably, given that these guys are hugely knowledgeable about beer, it’s for the unique taste that mass-produced SAB beers don’t have – that special something that only the personal touch can bring.

Step forward One One Eight. It’s the new kid on the craft beer block and it’s not pulling any punches, daringly – with seemingly little thought for its reputation – heading straight into a tasting session with a group of craft beer connoisseurs.

Yep, that’s Top Trolling by Ogilvy for SAB and Castle. Look how silly those all men suddenly look.

Reminds me a bit of weissbeer, actually. It’s got a bit of a weissbeer taste.

says the guy who keeps complaining that his wife puts chalk in his cheddar sandwiches each day.

So yes, they now all look very foolish.
But especially the guy in the pink shirt. Especially him. Because he was the most annoying one.

Because in answer to my earlier question as to why these people drink craft beer: it’s simply to be seen “drinking craft beer”. It’s the same thing as Farmer’s Market Syndrome. In fact, the two go hand in hand, as you’ll see at any Saturday morning city market.
A harsher blogger might put something about “more money than sense” here, but I won’t.

Look, if you want to drink expensive craft beer, then by all means, go and drink it. It’s probably going to be a bit expensive, but it’s probably also going to be very nice. A new experience. Something different. That’s fine.
But if you’re merely drinking it to be seen with a craft beer in your hand, then don’t pretend you’re doing it for any other reason that that.

You’re not fooling anyone with your pseudo-educated chatter, you trendy, irritating wanker.