3 thoughts on “Influencers”

  1. I guess, though, context helps. One is very Euro-centric, one is very “what’s happened in the U.S.” centric. Folks in the states can easily try all but three of the First We Feast list (two if you consider Miller Lite uses the Gablinger’s recipe), and Sam Adams could bring back Utopias and perhaps brew New Albion again (actually, I think the daughter of McAuliffe has restarted the brewery?) — whereas some of the beers on Zythophile’s list haven’t existed in our lifetime. To my limited knowledge, many on Martin’s list might not have had much influence outside the UK and definitely not in the US, where brewers were inspired by copies of copies — and as he dissed the FWF list as being US-centric, one wonders why the reverse isn’t an issue for him. He’s big on determining what was first; the FWF list leaned more towards what inspired others rather than what actually came first unless the two clearly matched up. He’s a super-talented historian, but his post seems to be knee-jerk, and while I chuckled at some of the choices on the FWF list, I at least see where they came from.

    1. It is undoubtedly true that both lists have their perspectives, but I would propose that words matter. The FWF list wasn’t ‘the 20 most influential beers of the last 30 years’ or ‘the 20 most influential beers of the Craft revolution’ etc. It was an “of all time” list, so I get having a bone to pick with that. It this case, it’s a pretty easy bone to find.

      There’s clearly a grand history of brewing and a lot of it on the FWF list feels ignored, in no small part due to their panel, which as far as I can tell, includes no historical expert, despite having a lot of expertise. That does a disservice to their readers. I’m sure another historian could find fault with Cornell’s list, too but at least we know he’s someone who has studied the field.

      That Cornell has a little salt to him…well, yeah, but he seems to be making an effort to match the title at least.

      Maybe better for me to say that both lists are playing to their audiences, but one list seems to be doing more of the heavy lifting.

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