2005 | FEATURES | EDITORIALS & LETTERS
Notes From The Publisher
By Tom Dalldorf
AMERICA CELEBRATES GOOD BEER
The San Francisco Bay Area celebrates beer like no other
region — with Beerapalooza! Now in its second year,
this intensive beer appreciation orgy took place February
12–20 with a variety of events, tastings, dinners and
The beer story is getting out. During Beerapalooza, the San
Francisco Chronicle put beer and cheese on the front page
of its much-lauded Wine Page, suggesting to food and wine
folks something that most of us have known for quite some
time: Beer is better with cheese than wine is.
Also, the Association of Brewers in Boulder, Colo., released
data from 2004 stating that America's craft brewers managed
to sell 7 percent more beer in 2004, "making craft beer
the fastest-growing segment of the U.S. beverage alcohol industry."
That includes imports, big-guy beers (industrial light lagers),
wine and spirits! People are catching on to "the affordable
luxury" — craft beer. Locally or regionally made,
with honest natural ingredients, richly flavored and offering
a lot of pleasure in a single glass, craft beer is once again
the darling of the adult beverage category.
As the industry gathers in April 2005 in Philadelphia, Pa.,
we are certain that spirits and expectations will be high
for the continued growth and appreciation of craft beer.
As we enter our 18th year of publishing the Celebrator
Beer News, we have seen timid initial experiment, grassroots
expansion, rapid growth, mass-marketing weasels and an industry-wide
"hitting of the wall," resulting in a few years
of microscopic growth, grandiose failures and involuntary
"consolidations." Ah, but as the old saying goes,
what doesn't kill you makes you stronger. We definitely are
The gathering in Philadelphia will be a meeting of visionaries
and survivors. Companies founded on good beer will reap the
benefits of acceptance by the fickle American consumer. Hanging
on to this acceptance will be the challenge of the next 10
years. And, if we are to expand the craft-beer segment —
doubling and tripling what we now enjoy — it will be
because the message of good beer has been brought to the masses
with the same passionate zeal that brought most of us to this
beverage of choice many years ago.
This issue of the Celebrator offers a comprehensive
review of Beerapalooza 2005, a curious story of a brewers
exchange between BJ's in Southern California and Fuller's
Brewery in London, more evidence that beer and only beer should
be consumed with great cheese, a tour of the most exclusive
and reclusive Trappist brewery in Belgium — Westvleteren,
an insider's look at the great beer bars of Philadelphia and
You, as a Celebrator reader, benefit from this information
first and must pass it along to your less-than-informed friends
and colleagues to further the interest of good beer. You are
empowered — spread the word.
LETTERS | Our
readers in their own write...
We have a new puppy in our family,
only nine weeks old. While I was working in my office,
the puppy was with me sniffing around and chewing on
things, as puppies will do. My office has a small area
where there are numerous items and publications on the
The puppy had its choice of notebooks, magazines and
newspapers to chew on, investigate or, as I quickly
learned, pee on. After shouting at the dog for her untimely
accident, I looked to see what paper it was she had
peed on. I then saw it was none other than Celebrator
Beer News. Not only did she pee on your paper,
but she peed directly on your face on the editorial
I was wondering if this merits further looking into?
Golden retrievers are known to be very intelligent dogs,
and she chose to pee on your paper. Can you explain
this peculiar selection of a publication for a puppy
to relive itself on? I would also like to compliment
you on being the most absorbent paper in the business.
Absolutely true story!
Co-Publisher, Ale Street News
||What's blond AND intelligent? A golden retriever!
And yours has great taste in potty training material.
Don't yell at her — praise her for her choice and
her aim. I'd rather be pissed on than pissed off. —
I just wanted to compliment you on your publication.
Last week, a friend and I went out to Lagunitas Brewing
Company and then hopped up to Hopland, where we purloined
one of your mags. What an eye-opener. I was not aware
of all the variety [of beer] in our own backyard.
I'm using your brew map to map out future travels.
Perhaps you can post this map on your Web site? I remember
when there were fewer than half a dozen pubs in the
greater Bay Area. I work on-board the ferryboats on
the San Francisco Bay. Perhaps someday I can help you
arrange a Booze Cruise. Keep up the good work.
David G. Endom
||Booze Cruise? Hummmmm … we like it. And thanks
for the kind words. When the Celebrator started in 1988,
there were only 20 breweries in the whole state! Things
have changed for the better, and you are helping to spread
the word. — Ed.