Sometimes craft beer people forget that drinking beer is more fun than waiting in line.
Craft beer enthusiasts are happy to stand in a long line and spend silly amounts of money for a "limited" crowler release. Even if the beer is outstanding, I am not baking in the sun on a summer weekend waiting for one beer. No matter how good you tell me that beer is, you've wasted your time.
It was made with an experimental hop variety in quantities triggering mild hallucinations!
I don't care.
It's a collaboration from the Capulets and Montegues!
Still don't care.
It was made with ground unicorn horn!
This is me not caring:
I completely understand the compulsion to seek out unique and exciting beers. I have a small but ever-expanding beer cellar, and I have a few beers in there that I'm really excited to have scored. The experience collecting beers to enjoy in the future with the right company of friends or family is one component of the craft beer allure.
On the other hand, bottle collecting is not the same as scoring a crowler of something that has to be drunk (at best) within 28 days of being purchased! Standing in line anticipating a beer you're probably going to drink that day means the marketing folks at the brewery won.
I applaud the branding and marketing effort to get people excited enough to wait in a line that ends with a can a beer instead of a roller coaster. Moreover, this trend appears to be an integral part of the success of the breweries it benefits. If you participate in crowler releases, good on ya.
I'd much rather be drinking beer than anticipating it! If the brewery's open, I'll be inside getting a beer in the present instead of standing in line for a future beer.
If I'm going to be enjoying a pint or two around lunch time during summer, I'm hoisting something light and refreshing. There are a crap-ton of beers that fit this description, but sometimes the budget calls for an American lager.
Let's set aside the politics and business practices of the Mega Breweries versus Craft Brewers for a second and focus on the product. I have little interest in the American Light Lager so we'll narrow it down to American Lager.
The Overall Impression section from the 2015 BJCP Beer Style Guidelines for Category 1B. American Lager reads as follows:
"A very pale, highly-carbonated, lightbodied, well-attenuated lager with a very neutral flavor profile and low bitterness. Served very cold, it can be a very refreshing and thirst quenching drink."
Refreshing and thirst quenching? Yes, please! I'm not going to endorse any particular brand here, but I'm not super picky about American Lagers served cold when the outdoor temperatures soar. If you don't want to spend your dollars supporting one of the big conglomerates, there are some fantastic craft examples out there.
So go ahead and enjoy the crowler! I applaud you for supporting a local business and the local brewing community. I'll be on my way to the rest of my day before you hit the front of the line.