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Red, White, and Brew: An American Beer Odyssey Paperback – September 30, 2008
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
“Brian Yaeger’s frothy beer travelogue is as multifaceted as the industry he covers. Amusing from the first beer (a surreptitious Coors Light from Dad’s minifridge) to the last (a Dogfish Head microbrew), Red White and Brew is the perfect beer lover’s literary trip―road sodas included!” ―Chris O'Hara, author of Great American Beer
“Let's hoist one for Brian Yaeger's beer journalism. Red, White, and Brew is like a well-made ale -- rich, tasty, interesting, and it leaves the reader with a nice buzz.” ―Ken Wells, author of Travels With Barley
“Ever wondered what beermakers really think about their work? Brian Yaeger supplies some answers in this coast-to-coast, behind-the-scenes tour of American breweries.” ―Maureen Ogle, author of Ambitious Brew
“Brian Yaeger understands that beer is more than just water, malt, and hops. It's also people, and not altogether normal people, either.” ―Dan Baum, author of Citizen Coors: An American Dynasty
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Top Customer Reviews
It's important to realize you won't learn much from this book about which beer you should be bringing home from the corner store; you will, however, uncover a ton of history about the brewery that made that beer, the people behind it, the business ups and downs, the process, and the blood sweat and tears that go into every bottle... uh, figuratively that is.
But the main takeaway for me was a new appreciation for how democratic beer can be. The Anheuser-Busch and MillerCoors of the world might prefer you to believe that beer must come from large breweries, but the people in Red White and Brew all started down their various paths with a very different idea in mind. Beer is what you make of it, and for someone with a passion, putting *good* beer in the fridge is something you can always do for yourself. It just takes one trip down to the local homebrew store, and you're on your way.
As I've already warned my girlfriend, the day may arrive where I come home with a few bags of malt and hops, and start putting into practice the ideas I now have percolating in my mind thanks to Red, White and Brew.
Surprisingly, there's little said about how the end product of each brewery tastes. The author also visits a bunch of brewpubs on the trip, but too many times, just breezes through the visit leaving the author to wonder what each place is really like. Anyone looking for any sort of insights as to how each different place on the map fits into its time and place is going to go away a bit unsatisfied.
Given the strength and weaknesses, I'd give it 3 1/2 stars so I'll round it up to four stars. Beer enthusiasts will enjoy it, but others may want to look elsewhere in the road trip genre.
It's filled with characters and, of course, beer. Almost every page makes you think "Shit, I wish I'd done that!" And, it's inspiring because you know that you COULD do that, though I'm not sure the world is ready for TWO US beer road books. Maybe try Germany?
The only qualm I have is the author's subtle bragging. Every stop he makes to stay with a "friend" is with a FEMALE friend. Hmmmm
But that's a minor qualm with a book that should be on top of your gift list for the beer/road trip lover in your life.
Still, if you are looking for something that is a lot like Bill Bryson but with breweries I'd heartily recommend this. The author is interesting himself, and the people he meets share a great deal of information.
My only critisism of the author's writing style lies in the way he weaves his own personal life experiences in with each of the interviews. I found this to be confusing at times, not completely sure if he was spaeking about himself, or the subject of his interview.
All in all this is a book worthy of a read by anyone who enjoys the craft brew revolution underway in our country, or just likes reading about, as well as drinking beer.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book contains a lot of good stuff for anyone who loves beer or just likes learning about beer. Nice.Published on July 7, 2013 by Christopher A Clements
One part road book, one part portrait of a unique breed of entrepreneur, "Red White and Brew" introduces us to independent brewers all over America, different in personalities and... Read morePublished on July 21, 2009 by Richard Marsland
Enlightening, entertaining, educating... what more can you ask for? And oh! It is about BEER!!Published on January 7, 2009 by Ellen Morrison
I've been into good beer for many years, but I had never taken my love of brew to the level of reading about it until now. Read morePublished on December 18, 2008 by C. Cohen
Red, White, and Brew: An American Beer Odyssey
I bought two of these books one for myself & one for my son in law. Read more