New Craft Beer Trends
New craft beer is a term that refers to beers produced by smaller, independent breweries. These breweries are often not owned by large national corporations and they focus on quality and innovation, resulting in an array of unique and creative beer styles.
Despite the rise of craft brewing in the United States, it has plateaued at around 12 percent of the beer market and analysts are cautious about its potential to expand its share. This market is also characterized by a variety of production schedules that can limit the ability of marketers to distribute these brands widely on a consistent basis.
In a move to appeal to the increasing number of beer drinkers who have a love for wine, some craft breweries are making unique combinations of both beverages. For example, Westbound & Down brewed its New Light IPA with Waimea, HBC-586, Simcoe, Mosaic and Cryo Columbus hops for a subtle but fruity feel.
A major trend in craft brewing is the use of genetically engineered yeasts, which can add flavor and aroma from exotic fruits and other ingredients to a beer. Omega Yeast in Chicago and Berkeley Yeast in Oakland have developed “thiolized” yeast strains that create scents of passionfruit, guava, grapefruit and other tropical fruits.
Nonalcoholic Ales & Sours
In 2023, expect more breweries to embrace the nonalcoholic beer segment and offer more beer styles that are alcohol-free. Athletic Brewing in Los Angeles is one example with its Upside Dawn, a 50-calorie golden ale that offers “the best flavor of a craft beer without the alcohol,” says founder Gore Suarez.