There’s a quote I read recently which went something like this: “The world makes sense, it’s just that we don’t understand it.”
Sometimes I feel that’s applicable to the beer industry. Trying to predict what’s going to happen in the beer world is fraught with danger. A few years ago the warnings were for a hop shortage and that we should be worried about the future of IPA. Now it turns out there’s a hop glut.
But for the first issue of 2018 I thought I’d give some the smartest minds in the business a chance to gaze into their crystal pint glasses to see if the sediment in their hazy IPA revealed any truths about the year ahead.
And … opinion was divided. Yep, IPA and pale ale will continue to be popular and the craze for haze will continue. Sours will remain niche, but a growing niche.
But the one consistent thread I picked up from was the return of lager in all its former glory.
Mass produced bland lager is the fortress against which the beer revolution hammered and as such came to be defined as an inherently evil beverage.
But brewers are now discovering that lager became popular for a reason. It’s a great and versatile style that can definitely be more flavoursome than the global giants have allowed it to be.
So brace yourself for lager in unexpected guises. Given the summer heat most of us have enjoyed, you know it makes sense.