This week I tried my damndest to look at various reasons why Millennials choose to drink craft beer. You can read part 1, about the binge drinking habits (or lack thereof), and part 2, about possible socio-cultural impacts on the age group.
But the underlying focus of the discussion was this: why drink craft beer over macro options, aside from the fact that it simply tastes better?
Taste is most definitely the driving factor, but what about all these other secondary reasons I was so curious about? As it turns out, anecdotal responses match up, too.
Briana, who started this thought process with an excellent question about Millennial behavior, is from Texas, where we know both the Millennial population and the craft beer scene are soaring. I corresponded with her via email, where she reinforced a couple points I made in my post about Millennials preference for variety and group socialization over beer. When she goes out, she’s seen a growing trend in craft beer appreciation:
I kind of judge them on whether they are going to order a ‘regular’ beer or try out something new and different. When they do, it’s an immediate relationship building topic. We both have an immediate understanding and appreciation for the locals or for the unique and can bond over it with each other, the bartender, or the other patrons.
She also said that breweries have become a popular hangout spot for groups of friends, noting that :the brewery becomes more of an activity rather than just sitting at a local sports dive drinking cheap beer specials while watching a game.”
I also got in touch with Colin Alsheimer, fellow beer enthusiast and beer writer for Central Track, a Dallas-based online alternative news site. Colin’s a big fan of the growth he’s seen in recent years across Texas and pointed out that even though it may put him in a niche group of Millennials, craft beer availability is something he will consider when it comes to living in a certain part of the country. Luckily for him, craft beer is now big in Texas, especially his metro area:
People get very passionate about it. It’s now at the point where we can support multiple beer festivals in a given year, when before I don’t think we had any at all. It’s almost at the point where if your establishment doesn’t at least try with the beer list, folks won’t go (and take that with a grain of salt – my group of friends and the people I talk to aren’t at all an accurate proxy for the average millennial in Dallas).
I posed this question of “why craft beer” to Twitter, where I got a wonderful collection of responses that also just so happen to correspond with some of the points I made in yesterday’s post.
From Millennials or non-Millennials, there are plenty of reasons to drink craft beer beyond the fact it does taste better:
— BryanDRoth (@BryanDRoth) December 12, 2013
I’d love to hear from you as well – aside from taste, why is craft beer your beer of choice?
“Don’t drink to get drunk. Drink to enjoy life.” — Jack Kerouac