Indiana Breweries – the book – the review

IndBreweries It’s out and available. Got mine from Amazon Saturday. John Holl and Nate Schweber’s 140-page read is the latest Breweries book from Stackpole Books (also available for Michigan, New Jersey, Virginia+MD+DE, and the benchmark book of Pennsylvania by Lew Bryson – a Missouri book is due this September). Last summer and fall, John and Nate crisscrossed Indiana for weeks harvesting information and visiting every brewery. The result is a very up-to-date travel guide. It includes the latest breweries (Bier, Flat 12, and Thr3e Wise Men) and even includes upcoming breweries (Black Swan, 3 Pints, Triton, and the Heorot). Each brewery’s story is told with backgrounds of the owners/brewers, John/Nate’s pick of the beer and the food, occasional interviews with patrons, and even description of the environment right down to the crapola on the walls. The only glaring omission seems to be street maps. But everyone has a GPS or Google now don’t they? The current fourth edition of Pennsylvania Breweries will be the last of the Stackpoles with maps I’m told. And I have to add just one other niggling issue. The editorial board (?) decided to omit LiL’ Charlies and Granite City because they outsource their wort. That said, we must applaud the amount of coverage given by the authors anyway. To be a more complete travel guide, they’ve included area attractions, zoos, halls of fame, and museums to visit and have given B&B or small hotel picks. The lists of good beer bars hopefully will be used by the traveler as visits there complement brewery tours, brewpub meals, and other staples of a good vacation or weekend trip. Every IndianaBeer, HBG, or Beer Nut reader, homebrewer, mug club member, Girls Pint Out or Beer Meetup folk, or BA/RB ticker needs a copy. Even your IndianaBeer reporter who has been immersed in the lore for years learned something about each of the 37 breweries detailed. John Holl is actually a big-time beer writer with NY Times, Beer Connoisseur, and lots of web cred. Latest from him is a Wall Street Journal article about the Sun King and Three Floyds collaboration. John and Nate will be back in Indiana (they’re actually New Jerseyites) for a book signing tour in April starting April 2nd & 3rd at New Albanian’s brewpubs. There’s one scheduled for  April 28th at Thr3e Wise Men. They should be at Beer Geeks Pub late on Dark Lord Day (April 30), and the calendar will fill in, and we’ll have it on the IndianaBeer Calendar – OR go to the book’s own facebook.com/indianabreweries pages for the latest.