The Firkin for February 2019

When lactose started showing up in beers, I wasn’t aghast. It is just another ingredient in the brewing cupboard.

When labels started showing up on cans that mimicked cereal, candy and other sugary treats, I was more wondering about the lack of creativity in the designs.

But this morning, I broke. I saw a conceptual design for a bar that had swings. Like a playground. As I typed on Facebook, “We are at peak kid-ification.” Or as Yorkshire Square Brewmaster, Andy Black said….

The American palate has certainly shifted to massive sugar levels. (As well as massive caffeine and spice levels) which is part of this surging trend but the marketing push hearkens to a certain nostalgia which makes for a formidable selling duo. As we saw, Make America Great Again as stupid and un-factual as it is, worked on many Americans.

But to me, this pastry/milkshake/cereal thing is a bit of a devolution. More chasing taste buds than creating new styles. I am not going to be so brazen as to tell a brewery what to sell but I feel like tossing in gummy bears or Trix is not about creating a balanced multi-dimensional beer and I have trouble believing (unless proven otherwise) that a brewing team would kick back at the end of the day drinking one of these diabetes bombs.

And to add kid zones to places where you drink? That is just weird. We can be young and old at once, we hold multitudes as the (butchered by me) saying goes, but let’s not forget what age we really are. Adding a swing to a bar may seem whimsical but in reality, its someone falling off and hurting themselves after a couple beers.

Finally, let’s take stock when countermeasures such as Flagship February start popping up. Because those are course corrections to prevailing winds.