Friday, 21 April 2017

Craft Brew

At this same time last year I had just finished a job that supposed a new and interesting challenge for me. I have been writing for years, not only about beer here on the blog and other media, but also stories and essays. And even poetry on occasion. Besides, my profession has required me to translate a remarkable number of documents, mostly on financial regulation and banking operative procedures. Never before, however, had I exercised professional translation: an opportunity which, linked to my passion for beer, I did not hesitate to take advantage of as it arose.

"For its content and quality, a good gift for Sant Jordi both for homebrewers and beer enthusiasts"

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Pièrre Zuber, a memory

Right now it is that time of the year when one leaves the Barcelona Beer Festival behind and realises that the world has not stopped in the last few weeks. After the usual three weeks long mental disconnection with reality, I sadly come upon the bad news of the death of Pièrre Zuber, owner of Délices et Caprices in Brussels.

"People like Pièrre perform an essential work for the dissemination of beer culture"

Sunday, 19 March 2017

Barcelona Beer Festival 2017 - Activities

La Farga, a spacious and well-equipped venue for BBF 2017

5 days left! The sixth edition of the Barcelona Beer Festival is very close, and the whole organisation team is very busy with the late details to ensure that everything goes well again. The change of location adds an extra layer of difficulty, as it requires us to change the mental comfort of knowing the terrain beforehand and adapt to a new space: La Farga del Hospitalet. It is undoubtedly an ideal venue for the BBF thanks to the many additional facilities that we can offer to our public, specially an increase on capacity and the comfort associated with a place that was designed for large events –e.g. toilets, air-conditioning.

But today there is something else to talk about. Less than a week away from hearing the bell tirelessly ringing whenever a new keg is tapped, it is high time for me to present the Parallel Activities Grid of the 2017 Barcelona Beer Festival here in the English version of the blog.

"In 2017 the activities offer grows, with three different rooms for an even more varied and transversal offering"

Monday, 20 February 2017

The price of beer...

Première of Arriaca's cans at the Barcelona Beer Festival 2016.

A year ago, Arriaca surprised us all with the launch of their beer in cans. Rubia, IPA and Vikingathor -a Boris Brew beer now made by San Frutos- were presented as the first canned Spanish craft beers, and gained much attention and praise: for the format, of course, but also for its quality. Nevertheless, I am bewildered to observe that the thing that seemed to me most revolutionary about it has been overlooked by most comments even one year later.

"The price of our beer is increasingly lower, even when it gives more likes and visits to say the opposite"

Sunday, 5 February 2017

Barcelona Beer Challenge 2017

For one more year, the Barcelona Beer Challenge has held its evaluation weekend in the taproom of Edge Brewing, in the Poblenou neighbourhood. This is the second edition of the contest, which has experienced a 51% growth in terms of participation compared to 2016, with 756 beers from a total of 203 breweries: 'a huge success', says Àngel Tarriño, director of the contest. The most optimistic estimates foresaw an increase of about 20%. One can therefore take for granted a good competition to reach the individual awards of the different categories, and a tough battle to win the prize for best brewery, obtained by Cervesa Montseny last year, and best new brewery.

"The result of the contest will be presented on Saturday March 25th, at the Barcelona Beer Festival 2017"

Monday, 30 January 2017

A transparency exercise...

Taken from my mailbox last week. I'd better not show you my email inbox...
I read with interest about Tempest Brewing Co's future plans in The BeerCast. I met a good part of their team while preparing their Meet the Brewer session at the Barcelona Beer Festival in 2016, and I enjoyed some varieties of their beers. After all, it does not come as a surprise that they are doing well.

However, the thing that leads me to write the present post is the initial reflection by colleague writer Rich Taylor, and what actually reveals the disclosure of this information by the Scottish brewery: a growing tendency to communicate on internal affairs and strategies. A good transparency exercise.

"In these changing times of breweries controlled by investment funds, effective communication with the consumer is key"

Friday, 27 January 2017

'Dando la Lata'

Six points to disseminate and promote cans within the general public.
As pointed out in the 2016 summary post, last year we witnessed how cans began to gain ground on the shelves and fridges of our favorite beer stores and bars. We even saw the first cans of Spanish craft beer.

Possibly one of the local actors that has placed a higher bet on cans until now is a distributor, Crusat, which currently has an extensive portfolio of beers in this format. That is why they have recently launched a campaign for the general public: 'Dando la Lata' -a set phrase in Spanish that would literally translate as 'Giving the Can', meaning hassling, or causing inconvenience-. Their aim is to get rid of certain widely popular beliefs about this kind of packaging, while praising its virtues. A good initiative that will certainly benefit them, but that will also benefit others. So good for it.

"For me, the main advantages of cans are comfort and conservation, in that specific order"