The Shrinking Stein

From the file of things-I-didn’t-think-I-had-to-worry-about, German beer sales are apparently dropping. Bloomberg brings the cold, frosty math: German beer consumption last year was at its lowest level since the government began keeping statistics 15 years ago. Appellation Beer, the thinking man’s beer blog, reports that breweries in Germany have been consolidating for years. In addition, many breweries are now internationally owned.

That’s why there’s now a minor German microbrewery and brewpub movement, according to a recent story from German media company Deutsche Welle. It quotes a Berlin brewpub owner who’s seriously disillusioned with the national palate: “The German beer drinker thinks he knows a lot about beer, but most of them know very, very, little. ... When I go to bars, I usually drink bottled beer because I know the tap beer has usually been physically abused. It’s atrocious.” Ouch.

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