Are growlers evil?

by Riff Raff Admin Dec 10, 2012 0 comments growler, packaging, garrett oliver, portability
Saw this year-old post on the Bon Appetit blog tonight. Garrett Oliver, brewmaster at the Brooklyn Brewery and respected beer connoisseur and beer guy, thinks growlers suck. While he has some good points about the intended experience of the beer being compromised by putting it into oversized, unsanitary, oxygen-laden bottles, I think he’s missing a few key points of the growler here.

You can’t always get beer from a brewery in a packaged form and you’ve got to run on to a party where you want to share it or at least drink it yourself.

  • You don’t have time to sit at the pub and drink a pint.
  • Your beer palate isn’t developed to the point where you can distinguish between 90 and 100 IBUs.
  • You don’t nitpick a three-star dinner served in a less-than-ideal presentation when all you need is a Happy Meal.
  • Growlers are a great way to transport 32 or 64 ounces (or more!) of beer somewhere that’s not easy to get…like a 14,000 foot peak six miles from the trailhead.

Technically, Oliver has some good points about beer quality in a growler. Practically, growlers are a great way to move a bunch of your favorite beer from one place to another and share it with others (or yourself) when you’re not worried about taking a BJCP judging exam to enjoy it. Long live growlers, my friend.