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Ambitious Brew: The Story of American Beer Paperback – Bargain Price, October 8, 2007
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From Publishers Weekly
Conventional wisdom has it that giant breweries, driven by corporate greed, have flooded the U.S. with inferior-tasting swill, and the only beer worth drinking is from scattered boutique microbrewers. Nonsense, says Ogle: companies like Miller and Anheuser-Busch are actually near-perfect embodiments of the American dream (in which "liberty nurtured ambition, and ambition fostered success")—and if their beers became noticeably blander 50 years ago, it's because consumers wanted it that way. Ogle (All the Modern Conveniences) looks back at the early years of brewers like Phillip Best, Frederick Pabst and Adolphus Busch as they rose to success making European-style beers for fellow immigrants, converting plenty of native palates along the way. Such men, she claims, should be heralded as captains of industry like Gilded Age icon J.P. Morgan. This material is strong, as is Ogle's analysis of the slow but steady rise of the Prohibition movement, but her narrative loses momentum as she tries to encompass the post–WWII era and add the most successful microbrewers to her list of heroes. Her exuberant musings on the American spirit become distracting, but there's more than enough drama in the family sagas to keep even the soberest of readers turning the pages. (Oct.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top customer reviews
Among all the books on the market today, there’s not a more definitive history of beer in the United States. That’s even more laudable considering that “Ambitious Brew” was published in 2007. The fact that it’s nearly eight years old is the only bad thing about the book.
Wouldn’t it be cool if Ms. Ogle put out a 10th anniversary edition with her take on developments in the U.S. beer scene—particularly the rapid growth of the craft beer movement—over the last decade?
The parts related to the prohibition seem a bit rushed, with some minor editing flaws. Which leads into a bit disjointed post war part. The book is packed with notes, bibliography and index (1/3 of kindle edition), and as such a good asset for the future.
Most recent customer reviews
I learned many new facts about Budweiser, Pabst Blue Ribbon, Schlitz, Coors and Miller.Read more
drinkable beers.Read more