Saturday, 3 November 2007

The Emperor’s new beer?

There’s a lot of stuff in November’s What’s Brewing plugging bottle-conditioned ales and wondering why retailers don’t do more to promote them. I suspect the answer is that they simply don’t sell enough. CAMRA has made a major strategic error in putting so much weight behind BCAs. At the end of the day they will never become a mass-market category because:

(a) there are obvious practical difficulties in storing and pouring them,
(b) they remain wildly inconsistent in quality, particularly those produced by smaller micro-brewers, and
(c) they do not deliver any significant improvement in flavour or character over the better brewery-conditioned bottles – something I have learned through extensive participation in CAMRA tasting panels

People will only go so far in drinking beers they have been told are good, as opposed to those they actually enjoy. All the advertising in the world will only sell a bad product once.

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