On March 30, 2016, the Craftbeericans YouTube channel officially launched. For those who don’t know, the Craftbeericans are a group of guys who enjoy craft beer and review different types on YouTube and Facebook Live. The concept developed after my buddy Tom Harness and I had a conversation about adding new content to my YouTube channel. I wanted to do something called Thirsty Thursday, but Tom had much grander ideas.
I was in Orlando for Spring Break when he emailed me proofs for a logo and the concept for The Craftbeericans. It was a name he had used in some social media postings in the past with Todd Ellis (who is also a member of the Craftbeericans). Our friend Todd Bryant rounded out the bunch and we’ve made 40 videos to date. The idea is to count down from 99 to 0 like the song 99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall. Our first show featured the ever popular Yuengling. It became an instant favorite for me.
The reason I wanted to do the show was to grow my brand and also learn more about craft beer. At the time, I knew virtually nothing about it. Sure I had drunk my fair share, but I typically stayed in my comfort zone of Bud Light, Corona and Blue Moon. (My college years it was more like Natty Light and Keystone.)
The biggest thing I’ve learned is I am not a fan of most IPAs. Hoppiness is not happiness for me. I do have a few exceptions to this rule, specifically “Stone Cold” Steve Austin’s Broken Skull IPA. I’ll write more about that in the future. I have also had Gunslinger by Crown Valley Brewery on more than one occasion.
When it comes to craft beers, I tend to like ones with fruit or sour ones. I’m a big fan of Traveler Grapefruit Shandy, Crown Valley’s Blackberry Cider and one named for me by homebrew buddy Doug Brinkley, the Hunsperger Beatdown Berry. Doug has made beers in each members likeness. We reviewed the berry brew during our 80s themes and tied the Smurfs into it. A few other favorites include Chocolate Milk Stout made locally Von Jakob Winery & Brewery, Southern Pecan by Lazy Magnolia Brewing Company and Koko Brown Ale by Kona Brewing Company.
A few other things I’ve learned over the past year, true German beers are pretty plain to me. I’m not a fan of the Oktoberfest brews. Hefeweizen gets its flavoring from bananas. It’s best to pour the beer in a glass when reviewing it to show off how it looks. We always give it a sniff before drinking which has become a good indicator of how the beer will taste.
I also try beers based on the label. Years ago I had 8-Bit Pale Ale because of the Pac-Man looking character on the can. This was before I knew of my disdain for hoppiness. The cool artwork is just as important to me as for how the beer tastes. I guess marketing does really work on me. The other great thing about craft beer is all the beer expos and events we’ve attended and tried beers we probably wouldn’t have before.
What are your favorite types of craft beer? Also, give the Craftbeericans a follow on social media.