One Prediction Comes True, Another Comes Under Debate

Another 2012 Predictions update:

  • We have our first barrel aged beer from Ontario in the LCBO! The 2012 Mill Street Barley Wine has been aged in Jack Daniels barrels. Now all I need is one more before the end of the year. (Beau’s Screaming Beaver should fit the bill.)
  • I want to open up debate for one of my predictions, specifically “Two beers or breweries will be started by the macro breweries that attempt to masquerade as craft beer.” As most people probably know by now, Creemore started up an offshoot called Mad & Noisy that is making beers that don’t fit under the Creemore brand. It’s a tough call, because it depends on whether you view Creemore as macro and if they are trying to pretend to be craft beer with the new brand. So I’m going to let people vote in the comments. Put a “Yes” if you think it should count as a correction prediction or “No” if you feel otherwise. Feel free to include an argument stating why. I’ll tally up the votes after a week and award a correction prediction if there are more people that say “Yes”. (In the event of a tie, it won’t count as a correct prediction.) Edit: The “Yes” voters win. Another point for me!

9 responses to “One Prediction Comes True, Another Comes Under Debate

  1. No.
    It IS craft beer, regardless of who makes it. There is no masquerade. You (like many others) seem to be following the big=not craft line. You even refer to it possibly being macro, which (it would seem) precludes it from being craft. I completely disagree with this thought. There is obviously the problem that “craft beer” is a totally subjective term, but by almost anybody’s definition, I would still say Mad & Noisy fits. It is a very very tasty beer, clearly made with excellent ingredients (and no adjuncts that don’t add to the over-all flavour/enjoyment of beer) by very skilled brewers. What more do you want? If it doesn’t get a craft beer stamp of approval, I will happily say that it is a non-craft beer that is better than at least half the legitimate craft brands available in the province.

    • Well made points and I’ve heard people share similar thoughts. But for the record, I’m not advocating one way or the other, just putting out discussion points. Yes, Creemore does not operate as a macro brewery, but they are owned by one and that always makes things a little tricky, especially when you’re talking about a brewery starting a new brand because they want to make beers that go against their established brand. The cynic in me wonders if Creemore realized they had dug themselves into a hole with their brand and wanted to jump on the hop train for more market share.

      • I know that the Brewer’s Association is on your side when it comes to ownership mattering in craft designation, but I think that’s silly (though I will concede it as a fair point). But faulting them for starting a new product line, and accusing them of doing it for purely capitalistic reasons is unfair. You can’t take a shot at them for having a conservative/traditional line of products (being “dug in a hole” to paraphrase), then accuse them of evil when they produce a progressive beer. Especially when that beer is actually very good. It won’t cut both ways.

      • If it had been made until the Creemore brand it would have been totally cool to me. The beer isn’t so crazy different that they needed a new brand. I know there is no basis to accuse them of doing it for ill gotten reasons (and I wasn’t, just saying it’s a possibility), but it’s just in my nature to put the big boys under the microscope.

  2. I would vote yes, the idea being you nailed the brewery within a brewery aspect of the prediction and the intent of Mad & Noisy is to make inroads to craft without reflecting directly on the older brand. Debating if Creemore is/is not craft is relevant but I am not sure it is helpful overall.

  3. Yes – as noted for the business decisions that go behind it (above). Having said that, if the beer is good I don’t care if it’s faux craft.

  4. I say yes. But I will take issue with your use of “masquerade”.

    It’s not Creemore per se that is starting up the brewery, it’s Molson. I think if they’re producing craft beer then they’re not masquerading. I think way-back-when when Rickards started out THEY were masquerading as craft. They even went so far as to obfuscate where they were brewing it and who was brewing it.

    I agree with Chris Schryer but I also think we’re gradually entering into new definitions of craft. We have already ditched the term “micro” as it relates to breweries. We have seen “micros” grow in size and still produce excellent beer. Are they now macros? Does size indicate that you aren’t producing craft beer anymore? I’m sure there are some definitions and guidelines for what constitutes a macro-owned brewery but I think we’re starting to see the lines become more and more blurred.

    • I think Creemore has been quite open to the fact that is being brewed at Creemore by the Creemore team. (Which makes it all the more confusing. If you’re telling people it’s a sub-brewery of Creemore, why not just make it a Creemore beer?)

      My prediction was written at the beginning of the year and I copied it word for word. I have issues with the word “masquerade” in this case as well, which is why I put it up for debate and am not giving myself a vote. It was meant more for beers like Rickard’s or Shock Top, not a weird case like this. Though I am happy it’s creating some discussion, regardless of how people feel

  5. It seems a bit like GLB and their Project X beers. Same brewery, slightly different concept.

    Creemore is brewing these as keg only, sort of large one-offs. Maybe the macro version of the pilot brew. LOL

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