Do you ever feel like you are living in a can of beer? Well, don’t be ridiculous. You’d be suffocating, drowning, and beyond that cans are tiny and you wouldn’t be reading this. But thats far from the point. The point is that beer bottles seem to get all the hype leaving cans in the dust. Only recently have craft brewers began to package their beers in cans, and it really does make sense. Buckbean Brewing Company in Reno Nevada knows this, and as such is hosting their second annual CANFEST, a beer festival to celebrate all craft beer that is canned! This is a great way to promote canned beer, and for the beer drinker, to get out an experience some amazing craft beers that they may never have thought of before.
As craft beer slowly but surely continues to gain market share and popularity among beer drinkers, new trends and developments are happening all across the world – new beers, new styles, new brands, exciting packaging, etc. But it seems like we could be seeing a renaissance in beer cans. In the U.S., breweries like New Belgium, 7 Seas Brewing, Ska Brewing, Oscar Blues, Buckbean, and Breckenridge already can many, if not all of their regular beers.
In every province west of Ontario beer cans are more prominent than bottles, and I suppose it does make sense. Cans do provide many added benefits over bottles, but they have been seen as a peasant’s drink, or are typecast as poor quality beer by the general public. Thats not right though; that is the same stereotyping that has people thinking that wine belongs on the dinner table more than beer. It is old fashioned, out dated, and just wrong, and the trend is beginning to change.
Cans are superior to glass bottles in many ways. The two biggest benefits are that cans are completely air tight and they also let zero light in. These are both issues with beer bottles, especially if you plan on ageing the beer. Even a tight cap can slowly erode letting trace amounts of oxygen in and the beer begins to oxidize and spoil. And unless the bottle is always kept in darkness, or is painted, then chances are light will get in some time during the bottles journey from brewery to your cellar.
Beyond that, cans are aluminum and more easily recyclable. Right now there are over 70 craft breweries in the united states offering cans, thats about 5%. That being said, I still suffer from lack-of-beer-can-itis… It seems like only Buckbean’s CANFEST can cure me. Dear Buckbean, please see the list of my symptoms below and prescribe for me something to help me get back into canned beer. Only CANFEST can save me now!