This Issue of Beverage Master Magazine

Beekeeping: Trials, Tribulations and Solutions

Just like a bee hive that looks small and compact from the outside, when opened up and dissected, it is large and complex. This is how the beekeeping and honey industry is in the USA. The inner workings of the beekeeping world is large and issue-filled. They are dealing with a plethora of issues from politics to the lifecycle and work of bees. From production of honey to the pollination of almond trees and other crops. From viruses, mites and fungicides to lack of pasture for bees to work.  Scientists studying bees have their work cut out for them. Many universities have teams of scientists working on these issues. “The number one problem with honey production is the loss of […]

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Moonshine University: What’s the Story?

There is a lot of talk about Moonshine University, launched in early 2013. As this Louisville, Kentucky training center moves toward year five of educating new distillers, I contacted some of the principals, to see how it’s going. The questions are from me, and most of the answers are from Christin Head, Registrar at Moonshine University. 1. What is Moonshine University? Moonshine University is the educational division of Distilled Spirits Epicenter, an artisan distillery and education center. Our distillery is adjacent to our state-of-the-art classroom and is set up for small runs and hands-on distilling training. We offer technical training and business management education for start-ups, industry professionals, and those looking for careers in the distilling industry. Our courses are […]

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Uniquely Ninkasi: Music, Metal, Art, and Beer

I had never used the words “cultured” or “compassionate” to describe a craft brewery before I discovered the Ninkasi Brewery and its wondrous marketing machine. Ninkasi, a popular microbrewery located in Eugene, Oregon, is a manifestation of a philosophy and creative marketing strategy that is pretty cool. Ninkasi’s founders, Nikos Ridge and Jamie Floyd, wanted Ninkasi to differ from the usual male-oriented brands. Instead of focusing on gender or age, Ninkasi focuses on the positive connection between beer and community. Ninkasi’s “Beer is Love” tag line sums up the brewery’s emphasis on community, discourse, and culture—resurrecting the community-centered connection that breweries epitomized in earlier times. The name Ninkasi was chosen in homage to the Sumerian goddess of fermentation. Jamie Floyd […]

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In the Yukon It’s Quality Not Quantity

Beer Canada’s 2015 Industry Trends reported that there were 644 licensed breweries in Canada. Over half were in Ontario and Quebec, 200 and 160, respectively. British Columbia claimed 120. This is not a real surprise as, for the most part, that’s where the people are. These three provinces account for roughly 75% of the entire Canadian population. But there are some Canadian souls who are as far from the crowds of Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver as you can get and still be in Canada. The Yukon Territory is home to about 35,000 people on half a million square km. There aren’t many Yukoners, but they drink their fair share of beer. According to Beer Canada, the Yukon has the highest […]

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Empire Brewing Company: Raising the Bar on Agritourism

David Katleski has always been one step ahead of the game in the craft beer industry.  He launched his first brewpub, Empire Brewing Company, in downtown Syracuse, New York, in 1994 when craft brewing was in its infancy. In 2003, he founded the New York State Brewers Association (NYSBA), when there were only 38 New York breweries. There are 288 today, and the association is at the center of a thriving industry that has gained the attention of their state lawmakers.  “I think the NYSBA is the envy of many guilds in the country,” Katleski told Beverage Master Magazine, “because we have an administration in Albany (Governor Andrew Cuomo) that is a friend of craft breweries, and they recognize the […]

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Pilot Malt House Profile

Erik May wants to tell you a story. No, he doesn’t want to tell you about his time in the Air Force, although he could. He wants to tell you a story about the earth. A story about beer. Once upon a time, May, the Founder and President of Pilot Malt House in Byron Center, Michigan, noticed something. Whenever he talked to Michigan brewers about where they got their malt, over and over again he heard the same answer. People knew the company they purchased their malt from, but when he asked where it was grown and who grew it, he was left with blank stares, and that bothered him. “I’d go back to my mom telling me not to […]

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Fast Aging Technology – Maybe it’s Nice to Fool Mother Nature After All!

In 2015, a distillery sent out for review bottles of a spirit billed as 20-year old mature rum.  Soon it was receiving positive critical reviews, including a Best of Class award at the 2015 Miami Rum Renaissance Festival.  Analyzed independently, it was proven to be chemically 15-20 years old.  This is nothing new – rums win awards and are chemically analyzed all the time, right? Yes, but this 20-year rum was actually made in just 6 days!  For those of you old enough to remember a margarine commercial from the 1970s…cue up the lightning, roll the thunder, and hear a woman’s voice exclaim, “It’s not nice to fool Mother Nature!” Or, is it after all?  Welcome to the world of […]

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All-American Craft Beer

Perhaps one of the surest signs that craft beer created and secured a significant position within the U.S. beer market is not the fast growth (which persists) or the segment’s market share (which continues to enlarge) but instead the increasing prominence of craft brewers in the middle of the country. Craft beer is no trendy bi-coastal phenomenon; craft beer is nationwide. While the biggest craft brewers remain those from traditional craft brewing strongholds like the Pacific Northwest, New England and California, beer makers in the Midwest, the South and elsewhere are increasingly making their presence felt. In 2015, for instance, Bell’s Brewery of Comstock, Michigan, grew faster than the craft beer market as a whole and ranked as the tenth […]

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The Bottle vs. Can Debate: Packaging Trends in the Brewing Industry

How do you like your beer: in bottles or cans? To many beer lovers, this is a personal choice, but an increasing number of breweries are selling their beer in both bottles and cans these days. Packaging continues to trend towards cans, and many brewers around the country are passionate about the reasons behind this packaging choice. However, the majority of craft beer today is still packaged in bottles. In this article we will discuss advantages and disadvantages of these two packaging methods and highlight the reasons why some breweries have made a choice that works for them. A Brief History of Bottled Beer Legend has it that bottled beer dates back at least 450 years when a forgetful Church […]

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