What, Exactly, Is Craft Beer?

By October 31, 2016 Blog, Shanghai No Comments

We all know what beer is. It’s a glorious drink made from fermented barley that is the world’s most popular and, perhaps, oldest alcoholic beverage.


But in the past few years, something else has seemed to have come from nowhere and taken over the world: craft beer. It’s so prevalent now that you could reasonably think that pretty much all beer is craft beer.

But this isn’t the case.

Of course, you can taste the difference when you compare craft beer to the world’s mass produced lagers, but there’s more to it than that. The “movement” is said to originate in the U.K. back in the 70’s, but has now spread the world over, first throughout the U.S. and Europe and now inevitably to Asia too. At their most basic, craft breweries can be defined as small, independent and traditional.

So the term does have a meaning. It’s just gotten a little cloudy over the last few years given its massive surge in popularity; certain “craft” breweries have become pretty large operations.

The brewery of Frank & Serafico, craft beer brewers and winemakers

The brewery of Frank & Serafico, craft beer brewers and winemakers

How can breweries that have enough reach to produce thousands of bottles and sell them on the other side of the world still be linked to a movement supposedly defined by small batches and tradition?

The answer is there in the name: craft. It’s at this point that craft beer becomes less about the amount of bottles produced and the size of the brewery than the commitment to good methods, the love of the makers and most importantly great, unique taste.

So, ultimately, craft beer isn’t even really anything new; in many ways its actually a return to older methods, a reaction against mass-produced and, let’s face it, kind of boring products.

If you want to look at it romantically (and why wouldn’t you?) it’s a way of seizing back something that has become corporate and lost its focus on taste and making it, once again, something interesting and artisanal.

You might know us as your solution to all wine related emergencies; but did you know we deliver craft beer aswell? Check the “Beer” section of the BottlesXO app and you’ll a selection of unique craft beers  ready to be delivered chilled in less than 60 minutes. 

Download the BottlesXO app here.