Home Brew Bloggers on October 19, 2020 0 Comments Craft beer is a small-scale, individually brewed beer made using traditional and non-mechanized methods. Many people love craft beer for its better taste, health benefits, and low cost. Making beer goes back thousands of years to Mesopotamia, and an ancient recipe can be found in a poem about the Sumerian brewing goddess, Ninkasi. However, craft beer has only been around for a few decades. Following the launch of All About Beer Magazine in 1979, American craft brewers and beer lovers led the transformation and rise of craft beer. A crash course in craft beer will help you understand its history and why it’s one of the hottest trends in America today. The First Craft Beer in the United States The art of brewing began in ancient times with the advent of the cultivation of wheat and barley grains. The history of modern-day craft beer in the United States began in the 1960s when Fritz Maytag decided to buy the Anchor Brewing Company in San Francisco, starting the craft beer revolution. As he approached his thirties, Maytag began searching for an industry where he could make his mark. When he learned that Anchor Brewing Company was facing closure after over six decades in business, he bought 51% of its shares. At first, the Stanford graduate had thought he would only finance the company — until, that is, creditors began approaching him with IOUs. This meant that he had to focus his attention on running the company and try to figure out how to sell more beer. He decided to improve the quality of beer by using new brewing techniques. This led to the introduction of the handcrafted Anchor Porter in 1972, Liberty Ale in 1975, and Christmas Ale in 1975. How Craft Brewing Became Popular After the 1960s, thousands of American citizens began to brew beer at home. They mostly did this for personal consumption, although others launched small businesses to make profits. In 1976, Jack McAuliffe established the New Albion Brewery in California. Since McAuliffe used to serve in the U.S Navy, he had traveled around the world, tasting various kinds of beer. While he was in Scotland, he fell in love with Scottish flavored beers, which inspired him to start his brewery after leaving the service. His work at New Albion led to the first true craft brewing that we have today. However, his company lasted for only six years. Regardless, thousands of people were inspired by the quality of beer New Albion produced and what Jack McAuliffe had accomplished, leading to the launch of dozens of microbreweries. In 1977, beer writer, Michael Jackson, helped enlighten people and spread the message about craft beer. One of his best works is the book, “The World Guide to Beers,” covers a wide variety of beers. The Legalization of Homebrewing From 1920 to 1979, homebrewing was banned by law. After homebrewing had become legal at both the state and federal levels, the 21st Amendment of the U.S. Constitution left alcohol regulation to individual states. Some states restricted the consumption of homebrew to residents who brewed it, while other states allow the sale and transportation of homebrew to events. Craft Beer Popularity Continues In recent years, craft beers accounted for nearly one-fourth of the nation’s $111 billion beer market, and they keep growing in popularity. A wide variety of craft beers have risen in popularity in recent decades and firmly established themselves among the top brews in America. Microbrewery craft beer allows producers to make their unique flavor of the beer. This is the main reason thousands of beer lovers nationwide have come to love these craft brews — especially pale ales and stouts. The beauty of craft beer is that anyone can try their hand at homebrewing – you never know what might become the next cult classic!