With new craft breweries and even some older breweries, bringing about a trend of fruity brews, we wonder where this could go next. While adding fruit flavors to brews is not truly a “new” idea, it does seem to have quite a following in recent years. And while there are many who will say “No, this is a new concept!”, we beg to differ. Fruit infused craft brews have actually been around for centuries with flavors such as orange and lemon creeping up quite often, not to mention the range of wine inspired brews that have come and gone over time. We do concede, however, that the idea has certainly gained itself a substantial amount of notice recently with a wide variety of creations catching the public eye.
We’ve all wondered this at one point or another. Brews like Angry Orchard, Redd’s Apple Ale, Redd’s Strawberry Ale and the like have been popping up and gaining a large amount of popularity. This is due, in part, to the gluten free quality of some of these brews! Yes, folks, gluten really is an issue and there are plenty of people out there who are learning to love the new brews just for the simple fact that they can actually drink them! I have personally met several people who, while they love beer, cannot drink 95% of the brews on the market due to celiac disease or other gluten allergies.
Imagine a life where you have to spend the majority of your time shopping reading labels on everything you purchase. A life where going to the bar with friends means that you are drinking only Malibu while they get to try all of the new mixes on the market without a single worry about how they’ll feel for the next week.
Sounds pretty frustrating right? I think so too. I have actually gone shopping with a friend suffering from celiac disease and the process is excruciating. Every label must be checked and cross-checked and if there is a hint of a doubt as to whether the item will fit into their diet, it must be discarded, no matter how much they want it.
The risk is simply not worth the ill feeling that could last a very long time if they guess wrong. While gluten is not the only reason these brews have gained popularity, it is certainly one to consider right at the top of the list of causes.
In addition to the fruit infused brew craze, we have the up and coming wine barrel aging that has gained its own following. On average, the ABV of these brews are often higher than your standard pilsner or ale and the taste is so layered that you often end up asking more about the brew. This is something the brewmasters love, as they get a chance to explain the craft.
After all, they love what they do and sharing that knowledge and experience with others is a way to spread the craft further! We’re certainly not going to turn down an offer to learn more about the brews we enjoy either, so it becomes a win/win situation for both brewmaster and enthusiast that may end with a new craft brewery being created in the long run!
Another benefit to wine barrel aged brews is recycling. Wine barrels have a limited life span in the winemaking industry. After they have served their purpose, they have no other job. This problem is easily solved by the new craft breweries that have taken to this method of aging, as they are able to source barrels from the wineries, thus creating less waste in landfills. Yes, we’re saying this process also helps the environment. That is definitely a good thing because everyone loves a process that creates great tasting beer and helps the environment too right?
Thanks to these two concepts, people have come to love the craft brewing industry more than ever. The long-lasting effects of this following show in the dedication of the brewmasters and the loyalty of their customers. After all, how can we knock something new when that new process creates more jobs, helps to protect our environment, and gives us something delicious to drink? I can easily see why people are loving the new/old trend and why it shows great merit for the future.
If you happen to enjoy these new brews as much as I do, check out some of the local breweries in West Palm Beach and south Florida in general. There are a wealth of new craft breweries for you to visit and they would all love to see you! Stop in at Funky Buddha Brewery in Oakland Park, where they are known for their multi-flavor brews and, of course, their taproom which features some outstanding food as well! Also make a stop at Wynwood Brewing Company in Wynwood, where they have Tuesday night trivia and feature seasonal and limited edition brews. What better chance to try something new when it’s almost always a limited edition? Make sure to fill up your growler before you go, because the next time you stop in the options may have changed!
Don’t hesitate to stop in here at West Palm Beach Brewery & Wine Vault later this year as well. We plan to open our doors in April and we’d love to see you! Come in and check out what we have on tap or try a glass of wine from our featured wine list, then relax or grab a tour. We’ve recently received our tanks and we’re looking forward to what 2017 has to bring!