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5 Craft Beer Trends for 2022

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Craft Beer Trends for 2022

This decade has started off on the wrong foot. A global pandemic, economic downturn, inflation worries, culture wars, and a growing political divide have dominated news cycles for months now. But within all the chaos plaguing the 2020s thus far, it’s nice to take a reprieve when one can find it. For many, craft beer has taken on that role.

It’s actually not a far fetched idea. On the face of it, some may say it’s just beer. But it’s really not just about the beer is it? People (particularly Americans) have always gravitated towards these little luxuries, especially in times of uncertainty. Going to the movies, grabbing a Starbucks coffee to go, or even enjoying a craft beer, these are just some examples of temporary escape — a moment of bliss. It’s really no wonder then we reach for a cold one every once in a while. Craft beer is always great, in good times and in bad.  

With that, predicting the future can be a tricky business. Going into the next year is a chance for something new. The same is true in the art and science of craft beer itself. First reported by The Manual, Jim McCune, executive director of the EGC Group’s Craft Beer Division, made some of his predictions for craft beer in 2022. McCune forecasts everything from zero-alcohol beer for the health-conscious drinker, to ongoing community outreach programs from craft breweries. He even foresees social media influencers playing an even larger role in the collaborations and promotion of brewery products.

The future of craft beer has endless possibilities. We predict 5 craft beer trends for 2022.

This got us thinking over here at Libation Nation: What craft beer trends do we see (or would like to see) for next year?

Here’s our predictions for craft beer in 2022:

  1. Water Use Creativity. Water shortages will continue to hit drought-stricken territories (especially states like California due to climate change). This directly impacts brewery operations and craft beer production. A need for water conservation and reuse, more integrated technologies and other self-sustainable methods will continue to be necessary for craft beer “survival.” Breweries will need to continue to flex their resourcefulness. [Read our article: Megadroughts and the Future of California’s Breweries]
  1. Weird Beer Gets Weirder. Craft beer (like anything else) can have a certain one-upmanship about it. Hence we get some funky ingredients and pretty weird flavors. Some examples of odd-ingredient libations include Avocado Honey Ale by Island Brewing Company, Coconut Curry Hefeweizen by New Belgium Brewery, and even Rocky Mountain Oyster Stout by Wynkoop Brewery (queue vomiting). We expect this trend to continue even more as new breweries continue to take root throughout the nation.
  1. AI Takes Over Beer…Sort of. There’s a burgeoning field of artificial intelligence and machine learning. It’s expected to permeate more and more into business operations. Breweries are no exception. While we shouldn’t expect drastic changes next year, AI will continue to automate lower-level tasks. This should free up more time and resources for breweries to exploit such as broader expansion into new and existing markets, enhanced beer production, or improved quality control. However, some have taken the power of AI in beer making a little too far: IntelligentX uses artificial intelligence to create different varieties of beer.  
  1. Craft Beer Popularity Boom Rises. The craft beer industry will continue to boom in popularity. The 1990s had around 300 craft breweries at the time. Today we have almost 9,000 breweries nationwide. That’s around 30x more breweries now than just 3 decades ago. Or to put it another way, that’s an average of 250-300 new craft breweries every year. While the COVID pandemic may have slowed down new brewery openings this past year or two, Americans still prefer to imbibe with good company rather than alone. Hence, we continue to seek out new places to gather; and what better place than a brewery for community. 
  1. New Tasty Beer Hotspot – DFW McCune also reports Minneapolis is the newest beer hotspot for 2022. He’s not wrong given the explosion of new breweries opening over the past decade. Be that as it may, our opinion is the fastest growing “tasty” beer hotspot is the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. Caveat: We don’t doubt the Twin Cities makes very tasty beer. Heck, we can’t wait to travel to Minneapolis sooner than later and experience all this great city has to offer. But hear us out on this. Over the past decade, DFW has also seen an explosion in new craft breweries. The catalyst for this is almost wholly due to its rapid population growth and business-friendly environment. This has made DFW the fastest growing area in the nation (several years running now). As new residents continue to flood the metroplex (mostly fleeing from states like California, New York, and Florida), beer tastes and preferences have naturally followed as well. The confluence of new residents from various backgrounds and walks-of-life has created this unique brewery freedom — a beer experimentation of sorts. This little part of the country was primed and ripe for a craft brewery revolution. As a result, new beer styles and flavors have been birthed into the brewery scene that exists there today. But don’t just take our word for it. You’ll have to visit the DFW area for yourself. 

So there you have it: 5 Craft Brewery Trends for 2022. We look forward to what the rest of this decade has to offer, and so should you. If history taught us anything it’s that you never know what the next year has to offer. And beer can take us there. 

Libation Nation Editor. Drink(s) of Choice: Mostly IPAs, Rye Old-Fashioneds. Favorite Breweries: Pretty much anywhere in California. Favorite Music: Pop Punk (don't judge me), Pop Rock, Indie Rock.

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10 Funniest Beer Names of 2021

We scoured America’s breweries in search of the funniest beer names we could find. It took a lot of work, blood, sweat, and well, beer, but we think we found them.

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10 Funniest Beer Names in 2021

We scoured America’s breweries in search of the funniest beer names we could find. It took a lot of work, blood, sweat, and well, beer, but we think we found them (Spoiler alert: not 1 but 2 breweries made the list twice). 

Think we missed a funny beer name, put it in the comments. Cheers to beers!

10 Funniest Beer Names of 2021:

#10 Wild Heaven Beer – Emergency Drinking Beer

“A one-of-a-kind session beer reminiscent of a crisp pilsner married with a traditional gose. Brightness and complexity come from additions of citrus zest, Portuguese sea salt and lemongrass.”

Wild Heaven Beer

https://wildheavenbeer.com/avondale-estates-avondale-wild-heaven-beer-beer0

#9 NoDa Brewing – Sticky When Wet IPA

“We brewed this beer one day after the hops were harvested…as fresh and sticky as you can get! This wet hopped beer has an assertive bitterness balanced with bright aroma and flavors of Peach and Grapefruit derived from heavy additions of Citra and Mosiac hops.”

NoDa Brewing Company

https://nodabrewing.com/our-beers/sticky-when-wet/

#8 Neck of the Woods Brewing – Stay in the Car Frank

“Stay in the car, Frank! is a 6% New England IPA that lends its aroma and flavor to the plentiful use of Mosaic, Citra, and El Dorado Hops. It has a softer smoother mouthfeel that ends with a dry, clean finish.”

Neck of the Woods brewing

https://neckofthewoodsbrewing.com/

#7 Evil Genius Beer – Stacy’s Mom Citra IPA

“You’re in love with this beer. One of our year-round flagship beers, Stacy’s Mom is an IPA with low bitterness and lots of hop flavor. It’s dry-hopped entirely with Citra, which, as you may have guessed, gets its name from its strong citrus notes. (You’re so smart!)”

Evil Genius Beer

http://evilgeniusbeer.com/beers/

#6 Against the Grain Brewery – Citra Ass Down IPA

“This beer is not candy or mother’s milk. It is not brewed by gypsies or aliens, nor does it contain any zombie dirt. This is a double IPA brewed with Citra Hops. It’s sticky, hoppy and delicious. Simply drink it and enjoy it. Don’t hoard this beer, Citra Ass Down and drink it now.”

Against the Grain Brewery

https://atgbrewery.com/beer/citra-ass-down/

#5 New Glory Brewery – Just Here for the Comments

“American Double IPA packed full of dank Pacific Northwest Hops and fermented with our more neutral, but still charismatic, ale yeast.”

New Glory Brewery

https://www.newglorybeer.com/beers/just-here-for-the-comments/

#4 Evil Genius Beer – Purple Monkey Dishwasher Chocolate Peanut Butter Porter

“If candy and beer had a beautiful liquid baby. Do you like chocolate and peanut butter but hate all that pesky chewing? Give your teeth a vacation with our rich, full-bodied chocolate peanut butter porter.”

Evil Genius Beer

http://evilgeniusbeer.com/beers/

#3 Birdfish Brewing Co. – Coal Miner’s Floozie Farmhouse Ale – Grisette

“Coal Miner’s Floozie 4% lemongrass Grisette on tap and in cans to-go.”

Birdfish Brewing Company

https://www.birdfishbrew.com/

#2 Common Space Brewery – Chubby Unicorn Milkshake Hazy IPA

“Once a unicorn reaches peak plumpness from months of gorging on pink guavas, it begins to ooze a delicious magical liquid from its beer glands. At Common Space we harvest this rare unicorn liquid at the highest level of freshness and package it especially for all of you haze heads. Enjoy your magical unicorn liquid!”

Common Space Brewery

https://www.commonspace.la/shipping-1/chubby-unicorn-case

#1 New Glory Brewery – Do You Even Zombie Broh? West Coast Double IPA

“Party like the undead with this in-your-face double! Originally brewed with our friends from Beer Zombies, this banger is brewed with 100% Mosaic hops. We triple dry hop it to a gruesome degree to capture all of those insane dank berry fruit flavors and aromas. Did we mention it’s also bone dry? The zombie apocalypse is coming. You’re prepping just right!”

New Glory Brewery

https://www.newglorybeer.com/beers/do-you-even-zombie-broh/

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10 Holiday Items on Amazon for Whiskey Drinkers

Here’s our list of 10 Amazon items for whiskey drinkers you can get right now.

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Christmas may be a stressful time for some, especially if you have to shop for someone else. But if that special someone drinks whiskey then we have you covered. We’ve done the research so you don’t have to. If you buy something through our Amazon “links,” Libation Nation may get a small share of the sale.

Top 10 Holiday Gifts on Amazon for Whiskey Drinkers:

1. Whiskey Drinking Glass with Real Embedded Bullet

That’s right, take this whiskey drinking glass at face value. It’s stunning appearance with a real embedded 0.308 bullet that makes it look like it’s about to shoot through the glass — a real favorite in whiskey drinking circles.

2. A 6-Piece Vinyl Record Coaster Set

The only thing better than a whiskey drinker is one whose also a music lover. Imagine setting down a freshly poured whiskey with beads of sweat dripping off the glass, not onto your precious wood table, but rather onto a vinyl record coaster with some of the biggest rock and pop icons in history. We’re talking Queen, The Beatles, Pink Floyd, Elvis, Michael Jackson, and Elton John.

3. Whiskey Decanter Set

Handmade and 100% lead-free crystal glass decanter, so whiskey drinkers can use it safely and longer at 1250ml/42 ounce capacity. A beautiful piece that’s perfect for any home bar.

4. Enamel “Probably Whiskey” Mug

Every whiskey drinker should have a run-of-the-mill enamel mug. It’s portable, discreet-ish, and perfect for the outdoors around a campfire. A classic piece for the whiskey-drinking outdoorsman.

5. 3D Skull Ice Mold Tray

Probably one of the coolest whiskey accessory gifts we’ve ever come across. Nothing looks cooler in whiskey than ice…literally. But seriously, this is the only thing that will stand out more in a whiskey glass than the whiskey itself . Great conversation piece to “break the ice” at a party (sorry, we had to do it).

6. A 7-Piece Italian Crafted Glass Decanter & Whisky Glasses Set

A barware collection isn’t complete without this Italian crafted fine whiskey decanter set. The set includes a classic squared 33.75 oz decanter with beveled fluted stopper, and 6 (six) 9.5oz whiskey tumbler glasses. This set is truly timeless, and one that whiskey drinkers will enjoy.

7. Whiskey Infusion Home Set

Enhance whiskey at home with these wood chip blends — 3 types of oak and 6 herbs & spices. Not only that, but all the botanicals in the set are 100% natural, freshly sourced and come in glass tubes with real corks so its eco-friendly.

8. Whiskey Wedge Glasses with Silicone Ice

A patented wedge-shaped ice tray that increases the contact surface with whiskey, which spheres melt much more slowly than square ice and round ice cubes, for ultra-slow melting to keep your whiskey cooler for so much longer. A great look to pair with a whiskey drinker’s favorite brand.

9. A 6 Granite Round Whiskey Stone Set

Whiskey stones have become increasingly popular in recent years. Whiskey stones help keep whiskey at the perfect sipping temperature. And this set provides the perfect variety of different colors and granite patterns to fit any whiskey drinker’s preference.

10. Stainless Steel Cocktail Shaker

Last, but certainly not least, is the necessary center piece of any home bar. In fact, can you really have a home bar without a cocktail shaker and bartending set? We didn’t think so either. And this set comes complete with mixer, muddler, mixing spoon, jigger, liquor pourers, and even cocktail recipe booklet.

So there you have it: 10 Holiday Gifts on Amazon for Whiskey Drinkers.

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays from the Libation Nation team. See you in 2022.

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10 Holiday Items on Amazon for Beer Lovers

Here’s our list of 10 Amazon Items for beer lovers you can get right now.

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It’s that time of the year again: the season of giving. Shopping for Christmas can be stressful. What do you give the beer lover who has it all? Well, this list will probably have something even the biggest craft beer fans don’t have yet. If you buy something through our Amazon “links,” Libation Nation may get a small share of the sale.

Top 10 Holiday Gifts on Amazon for Beer Lovers:

1. The Beer Aerator

This nifty gadget is straight from the future — and the future is full of beer love. This item helps make the perfect foam head using ultrasonic vibrations. Simply set your glass full of beer on the device, push the button, and watch sound waves magically bring the perfect foam head to the top. We bet even the most diehard beer drinkers don’t have the beer aerator, and would probably catch them off guard as a holiday gift.

2. Wall Mounted Magnetic Bottle Opener

Okay, we realize many beer drinkers already have a wall mounted bottle opener. But you’d be surprised how many have never thought to purchase one for themself. Maybe this holiday season is the perfect time to get your beer lover the one thing they’d appreciate and use all the time.

3. Small Portable Beer Cooler Bag

Talk about beer mobility. Whether you’re all going to the beach, the lake, or even hiking, this portable cooler bag is the perfect gift for the true beer drinking outdoorsman. We guarantee your average beer lover won’t have one of these.

4. Personal Stainless Steel Carbonated Growler

If your own personal growler with carbonation cap, double-wall vacuum-insulated stainless steel vessel with pressure gauge, dispenser cap and sight glass doesn’t scream beer lover then we don’t know what does. Not to mention this thing is a gorgeous piece of libation class.

5. Magnetic Automatic Push Down Beer Opener

If your beer drinker already has a wall mounted beer opener (or simply wouldn’t want one), then this sleek portable push down beer opener is the way to go. It comes in different colors with great finishes any beer lover would enjoy to have around the house. Makes for a great stocking stuffer too.

6. Handmade Wooden Beer Mug

Every beer lover should have a traditional style beer mug. Made from high quality mango wood with a stainless steel flask inside, this mug provides a stunning piece of beer memorabilia sure to make your friends green with envy.

7. Double Wall Frozen Pint Glass

If traditional isn’t your beer lover’s style, then perhaps a more modern look is needed. How about a pint glass with double wall plastic and freezer gel chiller? Doesn’t get more modern than that, and it’s sure to keep beer cooler and fresher longer.

8. Beer Cap Map of America

This stars and stripes USA theme in the shape of America can hold up to 65 bottle caps with easy install functionality. What a great gift to give your beer lover to track the memories of brew adventures across the country.

9. Vacuum Insulated Beer Can AND Beer Bottle Cooler

You read that right. This double walled, vacuum insulated cooler has the capability of not only holding a beer bottle, but also a beer can as well. The perfect gift for the single beverage on-the-go.

10. Complete Beer Making Starter Kit

The last, but certainly not least, gift item idea for beer lovers is none other than a beer making starter kit. We’re sure most craft beer enthusiasts have thought about making their own beer someday; why not make that happen this holiday season. A gift they’re sure to enjoy over and over again.

So there you have it: 10 Holiday Gifts on Amazon for Beer Lovers.

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays from the Libation Nation team. See you in 2022.

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