Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Playing Nice

To A-B's credit, all of these quotes have been removed from their site, with sincere (I do believe them) apologies.

The brewing community is a nice community, 99% asshole free is how I believe one brewer puts it. You can ask most brewers their opinions on industrial beer in America and most will have some admiration for these brewers' ability to craft such a consistent and clean product - even if it's not one they drink a lot of. You can imagine my surprise, then, when I went to Budweiser's website to check out their new commercials (as a TiVo user I skip ads). On their commercials page, next to the ad that is playing, they have a small text box that seemingly supports the ad you're watching. Here are two quotes from their website (sorry, it's a flash site and can't provide a specific URL).
Second rate brewers may age their beer with wood from old railroad ties or recycled furniture. We use only premium grade select beachwood to deliver Budweiser's unmistakably crisp clean taste.
Now, I know that this is likely written as hyperbole, a statement to some brewers overpowering wood character in their barrel aged beers. That said, I wouldn't expect most of the site's visitors (fans, I presume) to understand this. "Railroad ties", "recycled furniture"? This is shockingly uncool.
Other brewers may use only one or two steps to create their beer. We use a total of seven scientifically proven mindblowing steps to create ours.
Do you know any brewer that uses one or two steps to make their beer? I can't. It's almost as if they're claiming "other brewers" are lazy or taking shortcuts. Odd really, given that industrial brewers can achieve most (if not all) of these steps with a push of a button, whereas the craft brewers I know leave work sweaty and dirty after moving hoses, cleaning tanks and filters, or just lugging bags of grain up to the brew-deck to add to their mash. Oh, wait - that's at least four steps there alone! Heck, even my homebrewing requires more than a couple steps to make.

I don't think this is a reflection on A-B's brewers, or their team overall, but it is simply mind-blowing (not scientifically proven though) that a company of their stature would stoop so low in their online ads.