Beer brewers no longer feel the pressure to be coerced by rules, location, or even brewery walls. In a world were business can be conducted through smart phones anywhere in the world, a new band of brewers, coined gypsy or nomad brewers, can make beer anywhere they please without having to worry about owning an entire brewery. Here’s how it works: brewers rent a space for a day or two, make their own creations, then market it to the public. These one off specialty suds set themselves apart from more traditionally brewed beers because the people that concoct these beverages have a deep passion for what they do, and love formulating unique recipes that stand apart from the rest.
Jams, pickles, mustards and relishes are being produced out of apartments and farmhouses, so it only makes sense beers were going to be next. The criteria for these particular beers varies, but one thing is certain, this way of preparing brew takes finesse, imagination, a love for the craft, and connections. According to nomad brewer Brian Strumke of Stillwater Artisanal Ales “It’s a creative outlet and it’s more of an artistic endeavor, as opposed to a business venture. It was a way for me, originally, to express my creativity.” But, quite simply it’s a great way for taste makers to get their products out to the masses without having to make the financial commitment of investing in a large scale brew house.
Established breweries depend on signature beers to pay bills, but with no obligation to pay rent, or return loans. Gypsy brewers like Jeppe Jarnit-Bjergs of Evil Twin Brewing or Brian Strumke of Stillwater are free to brew, in essence, whatever they like. If Brian Strumke finds a new spice at an international market, it could end up the secret recipe in his next farmhouse ale.
If you frequent beer bars or high end specialty alcohol beverage stores, you mostly likely have come across these specialty brews, but just like the brewers themselves, these beer can be hard to pin down. My suggestion, if you see one, buy it, because you my never see it again. Plus, if you do run into the brew again, it might be a little bit different. Here is a short list of Gypsy Brewers to Look For:
-Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project