Are you ready to say good bye to 2012 and hello to 2013?
The government probably wishes that they had a few more days/weeks or even months to avoid the fiscal cliff, but I'm excited for what 2013 is going to bring.
Here are a few predictions:
- More breweries and expansions: In 2012, over 740 new breweries opened their doors and many more expanded their operations/opened a second location. There was a lot of news around East Coast expansion in North Carolina, while some others choose more central locations in the Midwest.
- Cans, cans and more cans: Packaging is a key component in brand recognition, but also very important for protecting the ingredients. In the past few years, we've seen many breweries choosing a can over a bottle. In New England, the cans have been a bit hit in Maine, with breweries such as Baxter Brewing and Marshall Wharf. The best beer in the world is brewed and packed in tall cans, in Vermont (Yes, that's Heady Topper). Also canned in Vermont, are Long Trail and Harpoon. In Massachusetts, Wachusett Brewing Company installed a massive canning line and will be releasing more beers this year --- in a CAN. Not to be left out, our very own Newburyport Brewing Company will be canning beer in 2013. I could go on an on (I really could). Cans are here to stay - don't pass them over, or you might be missing a gem!
- More Options/Less Shelf Space: Easy math here. More Breweries = More Beer, which results in less shelf space. It's time to move those dusty wine racks the side, to make room for beer!
- Focus on supporting local breweries: With all of the new breweries, the opportunity to pick up a fresh growler increases. If you don't have a new brewery in your town, you surely may have one close by. Stop by and pick up a growler -- it's a great opportunity to learn more about the passion behind the beer. We frequent Riverwalk Brewing, Blue Lobster Brewing, Throwback Brewery and Earth Eagle Brewings for awesome sources for growler fills!
- Increase of session beers: As consumers get savvy, the brewers must also shift. From the mind of a self-conscious consumer, ABV stands out. When we're out having a brew with dinner, we look for something very tasty. Bring on the tasty session brews!
While you're filling out the important 2013 events in your calendar, here are 10 beer festivals and events to add....
- 4th Annual Portsmouth Beer Week - February 23rd to March 4th. Portsmouth, NH.
- American Craft Beer Festival/Boston Beer Week - March 8th to 17th. Boston, MA.
- 17 Annual NERAX (New England Real Ale eXhibition) Cask Festival - March 20th to 23rd. Somerville, MA.
- Drink Craft Beer Springfest, A Celebration of Hops - April 5th to 6th. Boston, MA.
- American Craft Beer Week - May 13th to 19th. Everywhere.
- NH Craft Beer Week - June 22nd to June 29th. New Hampshire
- 4th Annual Beer Bloggers Conference - July 26th to 28th. Boston, MA.
- National IPA Day - August 2nd. Everywhere.
- Great American Beer Festival - October 10th to 12th, 2013. Denver, CO.
- 4th Annual North Shore Beer Week - September 21st to 29th.
Happy New Year!
Drink Craft Beer, You've Earned It!!!