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Michael Lewis

Point of Brew: Speakers Corner and the virtues of debate

We have a good deal of debate in the brewing industry about what is good beer and what is not. The brewing magazines are full of informed opinion about this beer and that one, and competitions for home brews at the local, county, state and national levels are almost clichés. Punters in pubs like to […]

Point of Brew: Sudwerk and the new truly global brewing company

I’m not sure how my friends, here and abroad, who work at SAB-Miller will look upon the purchase of that venerable and far-flung company by Anheuser-Busch Inbev; whatever their view, the $106 billion deal is expected to close in 2016. On the downside, there will be a major departure from the company of the upper […]

Point of Brew: ROI is king, and not just in France

Except for the rough patches where it is always scruffy and bare at this time of year owing to residential bugs or insidious fungus, my lawn otherwise looks remarkably green and healthy given the drought conditions we face. Naturally, when the new strategies for charging for water were published, that little patch of lawn was […]

October 21, 2015 | Posted in Arts | Tagged ,

The beer industry will never become like VW

Some time ago I gave students in my Master Brewer class practical observations that they needed to interpret, explain and recommend action on. One group was advised that a batch of malt contained some dark grains: Why? What to do? To my great surprise, the students decided the dark grains were not merely a low-grade […]

October 09, 2015 | Posted in Arts | Tagged ,

Point of Brew: And now for something really big

The last great frontier of expansion and take-over in the brewing industry came a giant step closer in the last week or so: Anheuser-Busch-Inbev approached SABMiller about a purchase; the price would be roughly $100 billion-plus. This possible buy-out has been discussed many times in the press with the view that it was inevitable: not […]

September 24, 2015 | Posted in Arts | Tagged ,

Are craft brewers veering too far from the Old World?

Tony Magee, owner of Lagunitas Brewing Company, announced Tuesday morning a 50-50 partnership with Heineken Brewing Company, in which the Dutch company ends up owning 50 percent of Lagunitas, the sixth largest American-owned brewer. Fast-growing Lagunitas makes excellent beers under brewmaster Jeremy Marshal, a graduate of our University Extension Master Brewers Program. This will doubtlessly be a […]

September 10, 2015 | Posted in Arts | Tagged ,

Point of Brew: Iconic beers and memories from the shadows

The Heineken Experience in Amsterdam is quite an experience. It is based on what remains of the old brewery very close to the Museum District of the city, near the Rijksmuseum. We walked from Breugel’s images that included drinking and revelry and the consequences of overindulgence and maybe brewing activities to the real thing just […]

August 27, 2015 | Posted in Arts | Tagged ,

Point of Brew: Brewers should lead by example in sobriety

Last week I said goodbye to the 40 students in my Master Brewers Program, 2015 edition, and the 23rd offering of the program. I shall miss this class more than most because they have been particularly rewarding to teach and to learn from; in short they have been a pleasure to be with. Now, the students […]

June 18, 2015 | Posted in Food & Drink | Tagged ,

Beer and Cider Fest highlights generosity and the value of things

Last Saturday afternoon, the Davis Beer and Cider Festival went off without a hitch, thanks to the hard work and dedication of the board of directors of the host charity Citizens Who Care. Thanks also to the labor of dozens of willing volunteers, who did much of the work during the day, CWC will receive every […]

June 04, 2015 | Posted in Arts | Tagged ,

Calling all beer and cider enthusiasts!

The Davis Beer and Cider Festival is just around the corner and I want to encourage you to attend. This is an important fundraiser for Citizens Who Care, a Yolo County charity that receives every penny of income from sponsors and ticket sales. Here are the details: The event runs from 2 to 5 p.m. […]

May 21, 2015 | Posted in Arts | Tagged ,

The question is: Is there craft beer?

I would like to meet Evan Parent; so would most craft brewers and home brewers. Everyone loves a battle between David and Goliath and Evan has fired the first shot in what could be an interesting skirmish. I would not have known about this under ordinary circumstance, but I happen to be in San Diego […]

May 07, 2015 | Posted in Arts | Tagged ,

Point of Brew: It’s time to educate the throngs of ‘craft’ brewers

Last week, my copilot and I drove north to Portland to attend the Craft Brewers Conference. Along the way we saw a delightful production of the musical “Guys and Dolls” at the Bowman Theater in Ashland, were awed by Crater Lake in its magnificent winter livery of blue sky and white snow, called in on […]

April 23, 2015 | Posted in Arts | Tagged ,

Point of Brew: Try drinking warmer beer

Last evening we were in Dulles airport with nothing to do but wait for our flight to begin boarding; predictably, we found a bar. I ordered a standard American lager beer in the 20-ounce size, equal to a British pint; I regard this as the only strictly sensible and totally appropriate volume for a glass […]

April 09, 2015 | Posted in Arts | Tagged ,
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