What is Craft Beer?
What could be better than a glass of chilled beer in this year round hot weather country? The answer is certainly many glasses of chilled beer.
While there are many brands of bottled and canned beer sold in the market, but nothing can beat the fresh draft beer on tap… No? Of course not, because there might be just one thing that makes its way to the golden medal of all beers, and that, my beer devoted fellows, is the craft beer… on tap!
But what exactly is craft beer, how is it different from regular draught beer, and what makes it stand out that you have to try at least once in your life time if you haven’t? Let me take you back to the beginning, and no I’m not going to take you back to the 1800BC when the first beer probably was brewed, but I’m taking you to the starting of when craft beer got its recognition.
THE ORIGIN OF CRAFT BEER
Craft beer or formally known as microbrewery used to just refer to an independently owned brewery that produces a small batch of beer. The term originated in the UK, where the first group of new generation breweries started to produce their own traditional cask ale beer, till one local brewery successfully earned their recognition in the village of Northamptonshire, despite an existence of a big corporate brewery on site like Carlsberg.
The microbrewery movement that started off in the UK made its way across the hemisphere to the United States. When then small amounts of beers and wines in a household is permitted, at the same time as a deregulation in the brewing industry, resulting in a boom of establishing home-based brewery business ventures. A large number of microbreweries often attached to a bar called brewpub, which simply was a public house brewery where the products could be sold directly. As the trend grew rapidly, some became more than just microbreweries, growing in scale and distributions exceeding an implication of microbrewery production margin, resulted in a creation of the term ‘craft brewing’. Where as craft brewing became more than just a scale referring term, it is a broader term applying to relatively small, independently owned brewery that engages in traditional brewing method and emphasises on the flavour, quality, and brewing technique, therefore, the term ‘craft beer’ was born.
THE UNIQUENESS OF CRAFT BEER
So, how does small-scale, independently owned, and traditional craft beer set itself apart from the regular beer people grab from minimarts on a soccer night? The answer is already in the question. Brewer’s Association states that microbrewery has to be a small-scale producing only less than 6 million barrels a year, and owned at least 75% by the crafters themselves. These qualifications guarantee the quality intended by the crafters and surely keeps the quality of each batch under close attentive control. And being traditional means the majority of their alcohol volume in the brewery comes from beer, usually all-malt beer, or other ingredients that enhance, and not lessen the flavour of the beer, instead of using corn, or other adjuncts the mega-breweries like to use. This automatically means the higher in quality, attention of ingredients, and breweries.
Also the effort, honesty, and creativity put into crafting and marketing is what makes craft beer special. Crafters usually list every ingredient on their labels, most of the time including the place the beer is brewed, and they do not cheat their ways to save cost and lessen the quality or flavour of their beer. Often, details and descriptions of the beers characteristics, their original gravity, final gravity, IBU, ABV percentage, and an honest, proud listing of quality ingredients are on the packages, websites, or presented up front at the brewpubs, especially emphasising on the types of malt, hop, or wheat they are using, in which produce the distinctive flavory and aromas to their beers. Most people will know a craft beer when they taste one, because it’s really different due to the complexity, uniqueness, and variety of flavours.
THE CRAFT BEER FROM PHUKET
Now that you know more about craft beer you ought to head out and grab one to quench your thirst and taste buds, but let’s get back to the first question and change it up just a bit, let’s say, “what could be better than glasses of chilled flavourful craft beer in this hot weather country?” I’d say, having glasses of that right next to the beach!
Speaking of beach cities in Thailand, Phuket definitely tops the list, with many beautiful beaches and places to hangout after a long day spent outdoor. “Full Moon Brew Work” at Jungceylon shopping mall right close to the beach is the one and only microbrewery & restaurant, where you can find authentic small batch handcrafted beer with distinctive Thai flavours and styles. Working with only finest and special local ingredients, the head brewer Sukij Thipatima brews his beer on site, and offers beer lovers varieties of craft beer to choose, from Phuket Lager, Andaman Dark Ale, Oriental Wheat, Inthanon Fruit Ale, and Chalawan Pale Ale, which are just only a portion of his Thai style inspired craft beer list.
While the Thai essence does not only ring through the names, but also presents in the special local ingredients such as Thai GABA rice from HM King’s Royal Project, Thai black sticky rice from the Sao-Hai paddy fields, and Chiangmai coriander seeds, along with other ingredients like German pilsner malt, German caramel malt, chocolate malt, and tropical Thai tangerine peels. You can really enjoy different flavours and bodies of his deliberately brewed beers, and get filled up with huge varieties of food, from common bar menu infused with a Thai touch, to full-on Thai, Asian, Western, and international dish that will satisfy your thirst, hunger, and taste buds.