Will IPA Be To Craft Beer
What Stainless Is to Appliances?
By Glenn DeLuca
As everyone who loves craft beer knows, IPA is KING. It seems we can’t get enough
hops…and the brewers know it. There are basic IPA’s, White, Black, Red, Rye,
Double, Imperial, Bourbon Barrell Aged, Session, Belgian-style, West Coast, Spiced,
Wild, fruity, collaboration and I’m sure I’m missing a bunch. I’m an IPA fan so when I
go out I’m looking to see what IPA’s are on tap and yes looking to try one I haven’t
had, like lots of other folks.
Some brewers have four of five of their own IPA’s so you can get a flight and go up
the ladder and taste each one. So yes, there’s plenty to choose from, so potentially
more staying power. And since many of us love it, and brewers have taken notice,
hops have and are working their way into other styles and you have some hoppy
lagers, pale ales, wet hopped, dry hopped, Randall etc.
For the 12 month period ending 1/25/15 IPA was 23% of total craft sales; not an
insignificant percentage. And that was up nearly 50% from the prior year! The craft
beer segment over the same period was up 20% over the prior year, so IPA
accounted for much of the increase. I’m not sure the big boys are shaking in their
boots, but they’ve already come up with a strategy of buying out smaller breweries;
harken back to my article a couple of months ago “Oh Where Oh Where Has My
Craft Brewery Gone?”
Stainless appliances were introduced in the late 80’s so now going 25 years strong.
From what I read those in the industry expect a 12-15 year life span for an
appliance finish, so basically it’s close to doubling the typical expectation. Every
year they write about the demise of stainless and numerous companies have
introduced new lines that they hoped/thought/prayed would be the next big
dominant appliance finish; oiled bronze, antique copper, GE Slate, Whirlpool Ice
(which is basically white), paneling (to match the cabinets) and I’m sure many others
I’ve either never heard of or don’t remember. There’s always the standard white,
almond, black and assorted other colors, but stainless equates to status and is
timeless, showing no signs of going away, much less easing up on its dominance.
I spent some time looking for some stats on how dominant stainless is and the only
thing I could find was that it was in the 25% range (no pun intended) back in 2006. I
don’t really have a clue if that’s accurate or how it may have changed, but probably
makes sense since when apartment buildings go up or get refurbished they
basically use white, unless of course we’re talking high end complexes. And then of
course the basement frig isn’t going to be high end, unless we’re talking high end
impress the hell out of me basement. So that’s interesting but it’s not really the
closeness in percentage we’re talking about here , it’s the similarity, and to be
honest there’s only so much time I’ll devote to researching appliances (unless of
course I have an IPA in my hand.)
For a beer drinker/lover I’d be very” hoppy” if IPA’s and hoppy beers keep coming
and the trend continues. We do hear the grumblings that there are too many hoppy
beers, just as they keep saying stainless will lose its dominant position. I guess we’ll
just have to keep drinking and see how the IPA trend continues or not over the
years. I’ll certainly be doing my part to keep the trend going…Enjoy!
Glenn DeLuca writes about beer and culture of drinking. He may
be reached by writing firstname.lastname@example.org.
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