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Beer on the Web

by Sara Doersam

If you have enjoyed my articles on Sally's Place and love beer or even if you're simply intrigued by craft brewed beer, here is your chance to find out more about craft beer's presence on the World Wide Web.

Craft beer, along with every other imaginable subject, has a presence on the Web, and it's growing stronger every day. Indeed, it seems that the craft beer industry is coming of age right alongside the World Wide Web.

Following is a sample of the vast array of craft beer-related Web sites competing for your attention.

No report about craft beer on the Web would be complete without mentioning The Real Beer Page at realbeer.com. The Real Beer Page is the brain child of Mark Silva, a former advertising executive who broke out of corporate America a few years ago to travel the countryside extolling the virtues of craft beer and the Internet (and selling space on the Real Beer Page).

Silva, along with associate Pat Hagerman, is building a craft beer empire with the Real Beer Page. You can find everything beery there including breweries, beer importers, beer publications, brewhouse suppliers, beer-of-the-month-clubs, beer authors, hop suppliers, beer drinking games, beer travelogues, burp me audio beer belching, and the list goes on and on.

Some of the Web sites I provide here are not affiliated with the Real Beer Page but many are, so you may want to use the Real Beer Page as a starting point when you surf the Web for craft beer sites.

A great diving board for searching out homebrew-related information is Spencer's Beer Page at realbeer.com/spencer/index.html. Spencer offers information from homebrew recipes to how to brew your first beer and results of competitions and brewing experiments.

A world of microbreweries have staked their claim on the Web. Here are just a few of my favorites:

Rogue Ales Brewery at rogueales.com
Mendocino Brewing Co. at www.mendobrew.com/index.html
Boston Beer Co. at www.samadams.com
Abita Brewing Co. at www.abita.com

Specialty beer importers have jumped on the bandwagon in an effort to create brand loyalty and develop a relationship with beer and consumers. I find these Web sites particularly compelling:

Vanberg & DeWulf, Belgian beer importer, at www.belgianexperts.com
(You can also view photos of the building of their Cooperstown, N.Y. Belgian-style brewery in progress.)
All Saints Brands, importer of a wide array of European beers, at www.classicbeer.com/allsaints

If you're interested in brew news of the West check out Celebrator Beer News at celebrator.com. Thelate beer bard himself, Michael Jackson, (not the late singing one with the glove) had posted the Beer Hunter Web page at www.beerhunter.com -- it now pays tribute to Michael Jackson. If you're in search of that perfect pint somewhere across the United States, visit The Beer Travelers' book Web page at www.allaboutbeer.com/beertravelers/ where you may find those special suds at anywhere from brewpubs to neighborhood bars in cities all over the country. While you're there you can stop in at All About Beer magazine's home page at allaboutbeer.com. Another great Web page for beer news and views is Stephen Beaumont's World of Beer at www.worldofbeer.com. For an index of beer books visit Storey Publishing at www.storey.com/. While you're there check out Beertown, the Association of Brewer's whimsical and educational Web site. Another craft brew segment that's making major inroads on the Web is homebrew supply shops. There are countless numbers throughout the country that are up on the Web. Along with the breweries and beer publications come the ancillary beer and brewery merchandisers such as brewhouse manufacturers, hop merchants, beer calendars, tee shirt manufacturers and more. Here's a sampling of those:

Commercial Breweries and Brewery Supplies:

DME Brewing Services at realbeer.com/dme/

Hop Merchants:

Hop Union at www.hopunion.com
John I Haas Hops at www.john-i-haas.com/

Other assorted merchants and services:
Copper Kettle Concepts, American Craft Brewers Calendar, at copperkettle.com
Siebel Institute of Technology, brew school in Chicago, at www.siebel-institute.com/

Expect increasingly more craft brewery stocks to be sold on the Web. Also, watch for growing numbers of virtual package stores with wide selections of craft beers available for ordering on line. It opens endless doors for craft beer aficionados to obtain beers that they otherwise would never have access to in their areas. I'll be watching with interest to see how this plays out with the Federal Trade Commission and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, both on federal and state levels.

Now if the thought of all this Web surfing wears you out, you can always stay right here at Sally's Place and read my beer articles.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the businesses in question before making your plans.

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