Craft is everywhere. Now what?
Breweries have popped up everywhere, and we live in a brave new world of endless pours to try and enjoy. In a world where there’s an ever-changing horizon of beers to explore, we could end up paralyzed with choice. How did we get to Beervana, and what does its future look like in Florida? Craft is everywhere. Now what?
How did we arrive here?
Looking back at American craft over the past several decades, beer wasn't made very widely, and we were fascinated by flag-carrier names.Beers like Pliny the Elder from Russian River, Heady Topper from The Alchemist, and Dark Lord from Three Floyds became famous across the nation and world for pioneering. As these beers in particular became lauded for leading us into new territory, other brewers took chances to make their own marks on similar styles. Compared to several years ago, people aren’t buzzing about these pioneering brews like they used to.
On the more approachable end of the spectrum, breweries like Sam Adams were standing up to big beer and creating approachable, delicious alternatives to macro brews. Along the way, we've discovered amazing, nearly- or entirely- lost methods, recipes, and styles:
- Brewing powerhouses like Dogfish Head have worked with historians and biologists to recreate ancient Egyptian and Chinese beers.
- On a wider scale, brewers across the country embraced mixed and wild fermentation, goses, and other amazing 'new to us' styles.
Let's look closer to home. Since 2010, the number of Breweries in Florida has more than doubled. While the number may not be the same everywhere, this is true across the country: craft has exploded. But, it's special in Florida.
What does it look like now?
The difference in our state means tantalizing combinations of bold and exciting styles popular across the country, and unique ingredients and cultural inspiration to draw from. Cuban coffee milk stouts in South Florida. Hibiscus berliner weisses. Strawberry blondes. Florida’s unique spin on beer is beautiful.
Not only is Florida bringing the heat on style- great beer is becoming accessible to almost everyone. The Brewers Association has 255 Craft Breweries registered in the state! There's a bustling, vibrant community of breweries fashioning delicious, innovative beer now. We see an explosion of brewers- and with that, comes immense availability of creative, locally focus, and innovative beers near us.
We (the drinkers) get to reap the rewards of so many styles being revived, breweries opened, and brewing's renaissance at large. Across the state, styles like the "Florida Weisse" are capturing the best of traditional styles and giving them uniquely Floridian twists- for example, with the use of local tropical fruits.
The new world is a very bright one- lots of breweries, lots of innovative beers, and easy access everywhere. What’s especially great about this is that there will always be something new to try, and great beer will increasingly be served everywhere. In Florida, brewers like Eric Garbarczyk of Hourglass in Longwood is serving up brett-soured farmhouse ales, while Nick Walker of Ology in Tallahassee has wild fermentation on the brain.
Whether you salivate for sours, are eager to find that next killer IPA, or love an easy drinking pale that pairs well with sand and sunshine, get out there, and try something local & awesome.