New Craft Beer
New craft beer is a reflection of the many ways in which microbreweries experiment with ingredients, styles and processes. These innovations are often obscure to the everyday consumer, but they play a key role in defining the quality and taste of modern beer.
New craft beers are an essential element of the craft brewing movement. The renaissance began with a rejection of fizzy yellow lagers and a desire to make great-tasting beers using classic European flavors and ingredients. The American craft breweries who embraced pilsners like Victory Prima Pils and Westbrook Gose helped give the movement its signature style, a clean, crisp lager that balances herbal hop flavors with a fleeting bitterness that tickles your tongue.
More recently, IPAs have taken over the corner of the market where most consumers shop, but not all drinkers want a double dry-hopped hopped up IPA. Many microbreweries have been adept at conceiving popular lagers that appeal to the tastes of these shoppers while introducing them to other styles.
While a variety of different beers presents operational challenges for some breweries, it also gives them the opportunity to distinguish their brands by promoting the concept of craft beyond beer. Sierra Nevada, for example, diversified in 2022 by launching Strainge Beast, an alcohol-free hard kombucha beverage that includes reishi mushrooms, and by offering Stone Buenafiesta Margaritas, a line of hard tequila seltzer. These offerings exemplify how craft breweries are using their brands to promote healthy lifestyles and a more healthful drinking experience.