Beer Can photo by iandavid of flickr.com

Beer Can photo by iandavid of flickr.com

Seems like Oskar Blues Brewery had it right all along in 2002, beer in a can equates to better beer. Its hard getting over the perception of the beer can and its place in the American beer market because for decades we have associated the can with the American Light Lager.  See we equate the all around product of American Macro beer and its tasteless, yellow water with 4% alcohol and its thin aluminium cans with being of poor quality. I understand that because I too have fallen victim to that stereotype. When I first came across a four pack of Ten Fidy for $14 I was almost insulted that a four pack of canned beer could cost so much, that was before I actually tasted the beer.  That was my gateway canned beer, the beer that turned my perception around to what can beer could be. Many cans, beers and years later the craft beer world is finally coming around to broadening their perception of can beers and now a major brewery has signed on in support.

Last week Boston Beer announced that they would begin canning their Boston lager, which peels back the veil of misperception and at the same time brings the can debate to the forefront. Here are the pros of the beer can debate.

Beer Can Pros

  • Blocks all light
  • Provides a better air tight seal
  • Weighs less which bring down shipping costs
  • Does not shatter
  • Allows beer to cool quicker
  • Accessibility (you can bring cans to some parks and stadiums only sell canned/plastic bottled beer)

Questions

  • Can you cellar a canned beer (store it for a long period of time to enhance its flavor)?
  • How will the plastic lining in the can hold up overtime?
  • Are there BPAs in the lining?

Personally, I have been to restaurants that have a BYO policy that do not allow can beer but do allow glass bombers, which hearkens back to the perception of canned beer in main stream society. For now, there are going to naturally be social implications of canned beer in the main stream but major breweries like Boston Beer taking steps to break that perception certainly is a great place to start. In the end though I think we could have a happy marriage of both canned and bottled beer that will suit all of our needs and make us one big happy beer drinking family.

Dale's Pale Ale photo by Bernt Rostad of flickr.com

Dale’s Pale Ale photo by Bernt Rostad of flickr.com