German beer sales were down again in 2009, continuing a 20-year trend.
I think I finally figured out why. They brew shit beer.
There you have it. Pretty simple.
The Rate Beer Best 2010 list is out and
not a German beer made only one German beer in the top 100.
Pardon my flipness. That German beer consumption has declined 30 percent in the last 20 years is not something to laugh about, and I’ve rambled on enough about lists like Rate Beer’s. (That said, it might take some restraint to resist commenting on Beer Advocate’s Beer in Review.)
British blogger Mark Dredge, a Rate Beer contributor, provides an excellent perspective on the Rate Beer Best:
For me, as it’s a collective opinion, it’s largely a guide as to what geeky beer drinkers (you need to be a geek to want to rate – rating is hard work and takes real dedication!) like to find in their pint glass. It’s not a list of the best beers to drink in a pub on a Sunday afternoon, it’s a list of some of the most esoteric flavour experiences possible, dominated by imperial stouts, barrel aging, IPAs and sours.
A couple of years ago Sylvia Kopp wrote a fine article in All About Beer magazine about the challenges German brewers face. Go read it.
Georg Schneider, owner of the Private Weissbierbrauerei G. Schneider & Sohn in Kelheim, doesn’t mince words: “The German beer market is deadly boring,” he says. “It is all very much the same. The tendency towards sameness is encouraged, for example, by our domestic beer tests rating beer only by its typicality and flawlessness. Creativity is only acted on in the beer mix category.”
Since then a group called Bier-Quer-Denker, selected by the brewing publication Brauwelt and the Association of Small Private Breweries, has presented beers beyond the usual in Germany at a couple of seminars. One was a “Reinheitsbegot tripel” (passing on sugar commonly used by Belgian brewers), using two hop varieties from New Zealand and yeast sourced from the Westmalle Trappist monastery brewery.
Of course they’re probably going to have to brew an imperial stout if they want to make the Rate Beer 2011 list.