A few weeks back we spoke to Chris Harper who runs Hops + Crafts, a specialist beer shop in Exeter.
Chris is an American, from Georgia, and among other things (most of which will turn up in our column in Devon Life magazine next month) he said this, shaking his head in astonishment:
I called up Northern Monk [Brew Co] to talk about buying some beer and the guy who answered the phone… He was from Georgia! From the same town! We went. To rival. High schools.
It struck us as weird back in 2013 that we could interview two Californian brewers 20 minutes apart across the Somerset Levels, and this is more of the same. (Brew Britannia, Chapter Sixteen, ‘The Outer Limits’.)
We tend to roll our eyes at people who complain about the Americanisation of UK culture for various reason, not least being that you only have to watch Brits awkwardly eating US-style barbecue at communal tables, elbows pressed to their sides, with cutlery, as we did in Bristol the weekend before last, to realise it’s not going to take.
But it does seem that a slightly higher proportion of people involved in craft beer in the UK (definition 2) are from the US than might be expected to have arisen by chance.
Maybe we ought to speak to some more people and write something longer on this.