transporting beer from a local tavern to one's home was to fill a lidded pail. In transport the beer would be splashed around inside the pail and the CO2 escaping from the lid apparently sounded like a growl. Thus the term "growler." When Charlie and Ernie Otto of Otto Brothers Brewing Company (now Grand Teton Brewing Company) of Idaho developed the large glass jug for transporting beer in the 1980's, the name stuck. (Thanks Wikipedia). For the most part you'll only find growlers in the U.S., Canada and Australia - in other words the non-English-speaking English-speaking countries.
With the growth of craft beers, growlers have become much more prevalent. This despite the fact that you pay about the same for 64 ounces as you would for the same beer in a six pack totaling 72 ounces. So why the rise in popularity? It's probably equal parts caché, perceived freshness and lack of 6-pack availability of some beers. Just as there is a certain je ne sais quoi to extracting a cork from a wine bottle as opposed to
|An alternate style of growler with a porcelain|
hinged top. There's a rubber gasket to keep
Late last year we had a BOTB meeting where we brought our favorite beers to taste, review and rate. On July 31st (making the July deadline by the skin of our teeth) we had a similar meeting where we were to bring a favorite, or one we thought The Guys would enjoy, in a growler. The difference this time was that we didn't rate them against each other, but merely reviewed them. As has become our custom, we started with the lowest alcohol content and proceeded to the highest. That way we feel we can taste and appreciate each on its own merits and not be overpowered by a bigger beer.
(Previously Double Barrel Brewing Company)
Next month we sample some Vermont beers Hud's providing after a grueling working vacation throughout that state.
The BOTB Guys