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The New Yorker is not a magazine one might normally associate with beer. Martinis before dinner, perhaps, but not beer. So it is a mark of craft beer’s increasing cultural significance that the mighty literary journal recently spent some its considerable graphical power on a most interesting interactive map, showing the United States in terms of a variety of beer-related statistics, including consumption, production, and proliferation of breweries.The most interesting categories to me were the “Fifty Largest,” which shows the growing importance of California (particularly Northern California) brews, and the list of new breweries opened in 2012, which shows the increasing power of the Mid-Atlantic and Upper South: Virginia, Maryland, and North Carolina look much like traditional powerhouses like California, Colorado, and Oregon in terms of new breweries opening. This caught my attention since I am a big fan of some of the beers coming out of my native Virginia these days, but sadly most of them are unavailable outside of the state, or at least outside of the D.C. Metro area. If you’re ever in that area, however, look for Blue Mountain’s Full Nelson Pale Ale, or better yet visit the brewery about 30 minutes outside of Charlottesville. You’ll be glad you did.

Mapping the Rise of Craft Beer, NewYorker.com

 

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