Sometimes, I have to recognize that were I live just doesn’t reflect much of anyplace else. This article at Esquire is one of those moments.
The basic premise behind that article seems to be: New breweries are forsaking quality (in ways that are not disclosed) in order to promote a ‘locally sourced’ beer as part of their marketing. This leads to consumers ignoring beers that “ain’t from ’round here” if you will, in order to get the cool thing in town. This will eventually lead to a whole bunch of breweries going under, in part because they just aren’t producing quality product. It’s also bad for consumers because they will support a substandard brewery all in the name of localvore movements, instead of supporting the good brewery.
Now, while I don’t doubt that many, many new breweries are working out the kinks in order to produce a better beer, I am also certain that eventually, the market will hit a saturation point where breweries that are market savvy and (hopefully) producing good beer will survive and others will collapse. But what I don’t see is any trend of ignoring beers from other regions. At all. Sure, it’s good to support the local people and they get easy press but I haven’t yet encountered anyone who has been dissuaded from drinking a beer because it was from Texas, instead of from Oregon.
It’s about the quality of the work, not the distance it has traveled to get to you.