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Widmer ponders whether “craft” term is still relevant in 2011

An interview with one of craft beer’s pioneers, Rob Widmer:

Actually, it’s interesting to me because we pay attention to it, obviously, and the definition of craft can be confusing. Now there’s a really interesting discussion that I’ve become aware of that says the word “craft” is kind of a historic term and because the evolution of small breweries has created so many beer styles and business models, “craft” was a word that meant something and now doesn’t.

via Craft Brew Founder Widmer Savors Results | TheStreet.


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4 thoughts on “Widmer ponders whether “craft” term is still relevant in 2011

  1. That might be true if all you’re ever exposed to are the Portland brewing scene and your tiny slice of the world at Widmer where craft dominates, but outside of that, “craft” still very much represents a tiny niche in the larger “beer” landscape. Certainly there’s a lot of variation in all of the different craft breweries, what they produce, how they conduct business, etc. There’s still complete cultural divide between what a giant corporate brewer is and even the largest of craft brewers is.

    This whole picking at semantics reminds me of the scene from Monty Python’s “The Life of Brian” discussing the schism between the Judean People’s Front and the People’s Front of Judea. Stick to making [great] beer, Widmer.

  2. ‘Craft’ of the beer world is the ‘artisan’ of the food world; sure, it’s nice for marketing, but does it really speak to quality of the product, or is it just an implicit nod to being from a small business?

    Does the craft moniker matter now? I’m not certain, but I’d love to see AB-InBev market a 1,000-bottle release of Oak-Aged Imperial Budweiser and see the reaction from the US craft beer community.

  3. “craft” is a term used by more commercial Brewerys ,like calling lager just beer. I believe the term “craft” should be exclusive to the small “micro” or “macro” brewery. These brewers still make each batch a little different from the prior batch, but still “hand crafted”. Unique and local or private to their brewpub.

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