This week, more than 6,400 craft brew professionals met up in Washington, D.C. to hold beer events, tastings, grant awards and show off what they’ve been doing the past year. Unfortunately, I had to take part in the conference via social media and news articles. Here are some of the things I took away from the conference:
– Craft brewers are seeking tax cuts. The New York Times reports that hundreds of craft brewers met with Congressional staff to ask for a tax cut that would allow them to brew more beer and hire more workers. “For every 31 gallons that we brew, $7 goes to Uncle Sam,” said Jeff Hancock, a co-founder of DC Brau, one of five craft breweries that have opened in the District of Columbia and its close suburbs in the last two years, joining dozens more in the rest of Virginia and Maryland.
The article says the Small BREW Act would reduce tax on the first 60,000 barrels a brewer makes to $3.50 and to $16 after that. Boston Beer Company, maker of Sam Adams, brewed 2.7 million barrels last year. Beyond 2 million barrels, the act says brewers would bay the full $18 tax.
– This cool 360 degree can exists. As craft beer has become more popular (think 21st Amendment, Oskar Blues’ Mama’s Little Yella Pills and Young’s Double Chocolate Stout), one craft brewer is redefining the can. Sly Fox announced this week that it’s created an open-mouthed can for easier drinking. The 360 degree lid comes off completely and turns the beer can into a cup. The wider mouth will allow air to better flow to the beer, though I can’t help but wonder why pouring the beer into the cup yourself isn’t as good if not better.
– Brewery owners often have some crazy beards. The editor of Thrillist D.C. noticed how many great beards were at this week’s conference. The article says, “… craft brewers not only make an amazing product that brings joy and happiness to people across the country, they’re also some of the most positive and nicest dudes you can run into at a conference.” Now we know.
Click below to check out a Storify compiling tweets from the conference using #CBC13 as a hashtag.
Looking for a craft beer event to attend? Boston often holds many of its own. The Drink Craft Beer Springfest is next weekend. For about $60 a session, you can have unlimited 2 ounce samples of more than 70 New England craft breweries. There are three sessions total, and the theme is hops, so all the brewers will be bringing their IPAs and other hoppy options.