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May 10, 2014 03:01 PM

Yuengling is now Craft Beer?

WTF is this BS?

'In February, the [Brewers Association] eliminated a long-standing requirement that a craft brewery must make at least half of its product, as well as its "flagship" beer, from only barley malt — not sugar from rice or corn, which large breweries commonly rely on to make thinly flavored lagers.

The amendment means Yuengling & Sons, Inc., the largest American-owned brewery, will soon join the Brewers Association's voting membership as a "craft" brewery, according to Julia Herz, a spokeswoman with the association. She says the change also brought August Schell and Narragansett, and their respective flagship lagers, into the craft category.'

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    1. It all started with this:

      People will always take issue with someone being or not being inside the craft-beer tent because the definition lies at a strange juncture of politics, commerce and esthetics.

      I think Jace Marti was justified in feeling the way he did about "craft vs crafty".

      2 Replies
      1. re: Jim Dorsch

        Because when you are drinking Grain Belt Premium, the first thing that comes to mind is "mmmmmmm...CRAFT!!!"

        I'm not sure this entire "craft" designation is really of much use, is it?

      2. Yuengling Lager is MY beer but it is NO craft beer! LOL!

        1. I live in Yuengling lager central. Used to positively loathe it, but ..... gotten used to it over time (I s'pose that's the least you can say about a beer).

          What's in it that it now qualifies as craft beer and formerly didn't?

          5 Replies
          1. re: linguafood

            Read my link above. It relates to traditional use of an ingredient, in this case an adjunct. Brewers in the US long ago started using corn and rice for technical reasons having to do with nitrogen levels in malt. After the flap with Schell, the BA took another look at adjunct use.

            1. re: Jim Dorsch

              The link didn't answer my question: what is the non-craft ingredient in Yuengling?


              1. re: linguafood

                Sorry, misread your question.

                I assume corn was the grain of contention in the past. But now it seems to be OK

              2. re: Jim Dorsch

                Adjunct brewing is a mixture of necessity back then and cost effectiveness later. When necessity wasn't an issue, using less flavorful corn and rice could stretch the fermentable content of a mash and produce more beer/alcohol for less cost. The choice for 6 row + adjuncts has mostly been attributed to cost savings later in history (such as the government capping the price of beer during the Depression). That and the general public's desire for less flavorful beer.


              3. re: linguafood

                Not too far from Yuengling central either. I remember when they couldn't give it away. They rolled the dice with a massive advertising campaign and the next thing you know its everywhere.

              4. How many Belgian beers are brewed w/ only barley tho'? Don't many use adjuncts like candied sugar?

                1 Reply
                1. re: Chinon00

                  The Brewer's Association definition is for American craft beer and I haven't heard the term used much in traditional beer countries like Germany and Belgium (I have heard it used in non-traditionally-beer countries like Italy). However, they seem to allow exceptions where candied sugar could play a role: "Craft beer is generally made with traditional ingredients like malted barley; interesting and sometimes non-traditional ingredients are often added for distinctiveness."