Dewey Beer Company reimagines beach brewing

I thought it was busy at the Dewey Beer Company and, I guess, for the uninitiated it looked that way. But there were seats to be had and no wait for tables in the Friday afternoon lull between lunch and dinner. Another way to tell there’s a lull in the action is to catch Brandon Smith, one of the partners, chatting with a beer in his hand. He and brewer Michael Reilly, who do much

What is in a name?

In this week’s Beer with Strangers podcast, Doug Griffith of Xtreme Brewing in Laurel and I discussed the recurring news story that craft beer is running out of names. Among the concerns is that it makes it harder for new brewers to break in and it prevents smaller brewers from having big breakout beers. Craft beers allegedly have kooky names because they are the product of one brewery making many, many beers. It makes sense,

Flights of fancy

My new favorite thing is the brewpub. I feel as if it’s the best way to sustain quality beer and innovation in the long run. Recently, I spoke with I guy I know about bottling. For small breweries, it is getting tougher and tougher to get shelf space. Retailers are only willing to cede so much Natural Light space to boutique beers. It’ll be like that for a long, long time. The market isn’t saturated

Searching Philadelphia for Maryland Beer

The Van Pelt library at the University of Pennsylvania truly is the type you can get lost in. I know ’cause I did. Early in my research I discovered that there was a person named John Beale Bordley, who was a colonial hotshot and one of the first production-scale brewers in Maryland. Bordley was friendly with Thomas Jefferson and as concerned as he was about what we now call sustainable living. Part of that, for

The Heady History of Chesapeake Brewing

Maryland’s Eastern Shore had a complicated relationship with beer for much of its history. Brewers fell into (roughly) two categories: people who needed the work and people who needed great beer. In this book, I trace that history and show how the two different kinds of brewers overlap.If you’re interested in coming to a talk or signing, here’s a list of events. If you would like me to come and speak with your group or at

Into the past

Castle HavenPhoto courtesy of the Choptank River Heritage Center I went to college as a 30-year-old and, as I made for the graduation finish line, my first marriage came apart. If I ever write that story it will read like the lamest version of the poor man’s Fear and Loathing. Come to think of it, Fear and Loathing in Delmar would be an awesome title. Doing primary source, original research was a graduation requirement, so I combined

Away we go

In a very, very technical sense, this was the first phototaken for the book. When +The History Press agreed to publish my book, I was a little worried about getting the right photos. But not quite as worried as they were at first.You see, Eastern Shore Beer was to be a pretty book, as well as an informative one. I got something like 32 color pages for a photo insert and was responsible for the cover and

Fan Fiction

Groupo Modelo write-offs cost AbInBev $6 billion this year.It lost another $1 billion anyway, even with the Word Cup. This is a tinfoil hat observation, but one that’s fun to make. Like all kooky theories, it begins with demonstrable facts and descends into the gap between madness and unlikelihood. Craft beer now has 8 percent of the market and think they can make it to 20 over the next decade. Budweiser’s parent company, even bolstered by

Exporting beer and a revolution

Oddly, though, Boxer Light hasn’t taken Belgium by storm Twenty years ago, I would tell you that Belgium was the greatest brewing country in the world. And today I would say it’s the United States. — John McDonald, Founder of Boulevard Brewing Company, in an +NPR story. Exporting a revolution Late last year, Belgian beer company +Duvel Moortgat closed a deal to buy +Boulevard Brewing Co. primarily to secure an American craft beer for export (or, I guess, import, depending upon