Ireland Craft Beers

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10 Reasons Why I Love Irish Craft Beer

Posted By Shane McCarthy on May 18, 2015

As we embark on this new and exciting business venture which focuses primarily on craft beer I got to thinking – why do we love craft beer so much? What’s the big attraction and how has it become such a popular choice across Ireland and the globe

As craft beer lovers go, you can imagine I had a pretty long list of reasons why it’s great, but to avoid boring you to tears, I’ve narrowed it to 10.

1. Choice, Choice, Choice

Back in our days of youthful carelessness, alcohol was alcohol plain and simple. Didn’t matter if it came in the form of a can of cider, a quarter bottle of whisky or a can of larger. It wasn’t really there to be enjoyed - it had one single purpose.

As we’ve grown into more sophisticated adults who’ve become accustomed to taste, culture, travel and alcohol, beer in particular, has become something to savour, sample and enjoy.

The choice of craft beers available is growing steadily and I love that I can walk into certain bars and off-licences and make a choice which expands further than the usual black stuff or generic lagers. As a consumer, choice is key!

2. Craft Beer Tastes Better

Craft beer tastes much better because craft brewers spend their time focusing on the quality of their beer rather than focusing on their marketing campaigns and stock prices. Craft brewers use unique fresh ingredients in their brews and don’t cut corners. The end result is something unique and delicious.

3. Love Trying New Things

My third reason ties in neatly with the second. I love to try new tastes, read the ingredients and get my pallet used to certain flavours. I definitely have a few personal favourite Irish craft beers but if a new label catches my eye, curiosity will always prevail and I’ll have to try it. I will admit, I’ve tasted a few absolute horrors in my time but its part and parcel of expanding the pallet and trying new things!

4. Local Produce

Maybe it’s an Irish thing but supporting local Irish produce has been drummed into me since childhood. The meat MUST come from ‘Sean’ the butcher who sources it from ‘Jim’ the farmer down the road, as does any other fresh produce we could get our hands on. I get a very disapproving look from my father-in-law if I take milk home from a well-known supermarket giant that’s renowned to be unsupportive of small Irish farmers.

It’s always been a sign of quality if you know where something comes from and better still if you know the producer by name.

For this reason craft beer ticks the box again. We are spoiled with the choice of local Irish craft beers available to us from around the Island and it’s a feel good factor to enjoy a fresh beer while supporting local Irish businesses.

5. Each Beer Tells A Story

The Irish are the world’s best storytellers. OK I don’t know if this is an official title but it’s my opinion. Read the ‘about’ section of some of our Irish breweries and you’ll find some truly profound stories. From couples who quit their day jobs to brew beer to friends who took a punt on their dream, it’s genuinely inspiring and another reason why I love craft beers. I get the feeling that I know the person who stands behind the product. I know their story and it adds another dimension to what they’re selling.

6. Branding, Packaging And Personality

Craft breweries pay special attention to their packaging and branding and this is reflected in their bottle labels and beer names. Some beer names and bottle graphics are truly genius and really reflect the personality of the brewers. I will refrain from naming my favourites as there may be trouble but it really makes them stand to attention on the shelves of the offy or bar. I love to keep an eye out for a label I haven’t seen before.

7. The Community

The craft beer brewing community are tight knit and extremely supportive of each other and this is something we’ve been lucky enough to learn early on. When speaking with brewers and doing market research before we launched our business, we were blown away by the comradery and support they all have for one another, despite the fact they are in competition. The same can be said for the craft beer social media community. Everyone is happy to co-exist, share information and help one another out. It’s an excellent show of solidarity for the craft beer community.

8. The Science

While science was never my strong point in school, I have begun to pay attention to words such as fermentation when it relates to a nice cold craft beer. Because there is such a wide variety of craft beers available, from pale ales to dark ales to IPAs it allows me to learn a bit about how the different tastes and flavours are made. It’s a science that I finally have interest in.

9. Alcohol Volume

Craft beers range from 5-10% abv (alcohol by volume), but some craft beers can reach 20%, 30%, and even 65% abv – Brewmeister Armegaddon! I don’t think I need to expand any more on this reason.

10. Variety Of Sizes

Craft beers come in all shapes and sizes to suit any occasion. They can vary from 330mls bottles and cans to one 1litre growlers. Smaller bottles are perfect for BBQ's or summer drinks and the larger 1litres suit me perfect on a Friday night when I don’t want too many trips to the fridge!

We’d love to hear some of your reasons for loving Irish craft beer? Are any the same as ours?