What’s your current beverage of choice? It seems today I see more beer sitting on restaurant tables than glasses of wine with the exception of fine dining. When given the choice I believe more people today would opt for a beer over a wine. Perhaps it is a sign of consumers looking for craft and flavor as opposed to quantity and effect. Craft beer was once a geeky endeavor with a small loyal following while wine was all the rage. Today wine still enjoys a slight sense of upper crust, but beer has found it’s way into acceptance everywhere. The popularity of wine led to a saturation of brands on the market as more vineyards popped up across the country and now beer is quickly starting to become saturated as well. The stores are full to the brim with various brands and so new breweries are finding it more difficult to get shelf space and tap handles. I love the myriad of choices we enjoy today, but I occasionally miss the hunt of trying to find various brands when the choices were much smaller. At one time with diligence you could beg, borrow, or steal each new release, but today I could not even keep up with the new releases in the North Carolina market. With 175+/- breweries operating if each released six seasonals per year that would be over a thousand beers. With over four thousand breweries in the US, the number becomes a staggering twenty-four thousand beers. I think beer has replaced wine as the beverage of choice with most Americans, but we are a thirsty nation and wine will always be there for those who refuse to try and find craft beers they might appreciate.

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