Excellent article, Timmons. You are hitting the nail on the head.
mnash - If you want specific examples, I will give you a blatant one.
Good For Charleston: Charleston Beer Exchange selling high quality craft beer in sanitized growlers while educating the customers on said beer.
Bad For Charleston: Sunoco "Craft Beer Exchange" (wonder where they got that name from) selling any beer in improperly sanitized growlers, while having no knowledge on said beer.
There are many other examples out there that don't always relate to growler events. I think Timmons was smart to leave the examples out. There are probably more examples for good vs bad than he would possibly be able to list here.
Alcest and Josh - thanks for the growler education.
mnash - I was overly snarky last night. Long day. Apologies.
That said, you seem to be implying that CP somehow censored my piece, or that I censored it myself because I thought CP "cannot present hard-hitting journalism on the same F&B vendors." Wrong.
CP approached me to see if I wanted to write a piece for the Beer Issue. I chose the topic, wrote it, and turned in the final product without their input. They applied a light edit, as is expected, but this was intended to be, and is, an opinion piece. It's not an expose, and it's not hard journalism. Likewise, CP was in no way involved in creating (or manipulating) the content because of some conspiracy with advertisers.
I'm sure I sound defensive, because I am defensive when my integrity as a writer is questioned. I am not a CP staffer, I'm a freelancer expressing my personal opinion. You don't have to agree with me, but the idea that my piece was driven by ad dollars to CP is both insulting and flatly wrong.
(If you're making some larger point about CP having a conflict of interest with F&B, I'd reject that too. If that were the case, they wouldn't do restaurant reviews, they would do restaurant profiles. But since your comment is on my piece, I have to assume you're using me as an example.)
Good day to you, sir/ma'am.
@Cid95 Growlers are great for beers that are hard to come by in the region. A lot of times we can not get bottles of specialty beers and only get kegs of them. Take for instance rare beer tuesdays at CBX. A lot of those kegs are one time deals and we may never see the beer again in the lowcountry. With that, i prefer bottles of beer for your standard beers. The cost is typically the same as a growler and you're not rushed to drink 5 beers in 1-2 days before the beer goes flat and loses the flavors intended by the brewers. When unopened, a growler can last quite a long time. once opened, you have 2 days tops to drink it.
@mnash408 In terms of naming names i don't see a need to. any place that markets the "coldest beer in Charleston" or any event that you can buy a ticket to on groupon is typically destined for failure. If a restaurant wants to promote craft beers their staff needs to be knowledgable about the product more than "it's hoppy".
And one final FYI to everyone out there, the brewery is named New Belgium, NOT Fat Tire!
Cid - If you don't have one, buy a growler, usually only 5 dollars for a half gallon although other sizes can be found, fill it an take it home. Once you open it, drink your 4 pints in 2-3 days so it doesn't go flat. Even if you left it for a ridiculous time in the fridge, really hoppy beers may fade, and boozier beers may mellow but it will not skunk. Some people prefer the taste of draft beer, others like myself get beers they don't normally see in bottles.
Thanks for the comment, Timmons, but my comment was never meant to be directed towards you. These ARE things that happen in Charleston, like they do everywhere, but I'd like to name names. I'll leave it to the readers to decide who's doing what right/wrong.
Hint: A newspaper that is funded by F&B advertising revenue cannot present hard-hitting journalism on the same F&B vendors, writers that join the comments to denigrate their readers sound defensive, and replace "McDonald's" with "Schlitz" to clarify your muddled metaphor.
OK, I know I need to be more trendy, but I admit this growler thing has totally passed me by. I've seen what I presume to be "growler stations" at grocery stores. How does that work? You just bring a big bottle and fill it up with beer and take it home? What is the advantage over buying, say, six smaller bottles? If you don't finish the big bottle, wouldn't the beer go bad if you just put it in the fridge (I believe "get skunked" is the proper technical term)?
Thanks for the comment, mnash, but this was never meant to be a hitpiece. These ARE things that happen in Charleston, like they do everywhere, but I'm not naming names. I'll leave it to you to decide who's doing what right/wrong.
Hint: "Frosty glassware" can be easily spotted by the frost; it's also cold to the touch. Beer poured through a dirty tap line tastes like shit, and misspelled menus have spelling errors.
I enjoyed the article, but I wish the author would be specific (although I understand why he can't - City Paper has ads to sell). Brewvival has been mentioned in the comments, let's hear some others that are suffering growing pains.
i.e., explain this sentence:
"We have to deal with many other offenses thanks to the providers driving the 2012 Fadwagon and consumers riding shotgun: frosty glassware, dirty glassware, dirty tap lines, frosty tap lines, misspelled menus, under-educated staff, under-rotated kegs, etc."
Great article. I have been a consumer in the Craft Beer market since someone turned me on to it in the late 90's. I have had a ring side seat as it grew. And the growing pains have been evident.
This year's Brewvival was a great example. First, let me preface this comment by saying that hands down this is a highlight of my year. I have been to each and every year. David and Jamie at COAST have arguably done more for beer in SC and Charleston especially than anyone. I think they will agree. This year it showed that it was a bit bloated. The lines were chaotic. The idealistic self policing behavior was all but gone. People cut to the front of lines. "Designated drivers" handed off glasses and drank essentially for free. In many a line I saw "old timers" refuse to sink to the level of others and miss out on samples after 30 minutes in line. Maybe we can't put Pandora back in her box, but I would like to believe so...
Great article! Would love to see Brandon do a weekly column.
Save your nacre. These swine aren't worth the time.
Great article Timmons. You highlight some good examples of why more is not more. The few high quality examples of beer-related activities in our area have spurred dozens of less than stellar imposters. It's important for us to spend our time and money supporting those who really have their heart in it and focus on quality and experience, not just profit. Thanks for the insight.
Yay!!!!! Excellent article!!! Long live Old Time!!
I've tried Yuengling so many times but I can't find it to suit my taste. Kinda reminds me of Dr. Browns Creme Soda...by the way, Pennsylvania sucks.
Coors Original is pretty dang good...Hard to find.
I guess I'm stuck with Bud and Bud Light.
I can say with the authority of a native Pennsylvanian that while Yuengling is truly the American workingman's beer, Yuengling Premium is to be avoided and/or left in unsuspecting party-host refrigerators. Lager, Light Lager, B&T, Porter, Chesterfield (never actually had the Bock) are all good in the hood but Premium and Premium Light are just nasty.
And craft beers have a worthy place, but not for mowing lawns, flipping cups, or pong.
This is an advertisement, not an article.
You might not be a beer snob, but sounds like you might be a mustard snob. Poor 'French's'...
Bud is no longer a truly American beer. InBev, a foreign company, bought out Anheuser-Busch several years ago.
For a truly American lager produced by the oldest family owned brewing operation in America, I suggest you purchase Yuengling! If you go to the Safeway on Meeting street, you can occasionally find Yuengling's Bock beer and Lord Chesterfield Ale, in addition to the classic amber lager. All good stuff.
Yes, Bill's is filling growlers in Summerville. Not a huge growler station (I think 3 or 4), but it beats having to drive to downtown or Mt. P.
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