Book Review: Brewed Awakening – Joshua M. Bernstein

Title: Brewed Awakening: Behind the Beers and Brewers Leading the World’s Craft Brewing Revolution
Author: Joshua M. Bernstein
ISBN: 9781402778643
Pages: 304
Release Date: November 1, 2011
Publisher: Sterling Epicure
Genre: Non-Fiction, Foodie
Source: Publisher
Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Summary:

In this book, Joshua Bernstein discusses the new trends and revolutions in craft brewing, as well as reviewing favorite beer styles and delivering profiles of leaders in the craft brewing movement.

Review:

Though I don’t discuss it often on my blog, craft beer is something of a hobby of mine.  I enjoy discussing it, trying new varieties, and finding new breweries to rave about; from Dogfish Head to Oskar Blues to new local favorite Port City Brewing Company, I am just a huge fan of microbreweries.  Therefore, when I found Brewed Awakening, I was incredibly excited to mix two of my favorite hobbies – reading and craft beer.

Joshua Bernstein does an excellent job providing a coherent overview of the craft beer scene.  Though most seasoned fans of craft brews won’t find a lot of new information within its pages, if you are curious about anything from the new canning trend to beer styles, this is a great resource.  One of the most valuable parts of this guide for a beginner is Bernstein’s “suggested brews” list for every variety he discusses.  His choices are excellent, and I would recommend most of them to a friend.

Bernstein also profiles innovative breweries in Brewed Awakening, and I was pleased to see a few of my favorites among those chosen.  This solidified my opinion that the author really knows his craft beer and that we have similar likes and dislikes.  I especially appreciated his defense of session beers, or beers with an alcohol content of 4.5% or lower.  Though many craft beer lovers would disdain such a low alcohol percentage, Bernstein points out that someone who refuses to try a beer based on a low ABV is likely a fan of getting drunk more than they are of microbrews.  I also found Bernstein’s discussion of different types of hops very thorough and loved his double page spread on individual types of hops and their characteristics.

I also have to say a few words about how beautifully designed Brewed Awakening is.  It has a thick dust jacket, and when it’s removed and unfolded, it becomes a poster with Joshua’s craft beer suggestions.  The pages are made of high quality, thick paper and the colors are bright and vivid.  This is a beautiful book to just keep on your shelves, and it’s impressive to look at.  I love how much thought and care clearly went into putting it together.

The bottom line is that, whether you’re a seasoned craft beer lover or a newbie to the world, this is a great resource to have on your shelf.  While those very familiar with brewing trends and microbreweries might not get as much out of it as a newcomer, it’s still a joy to flip through the thoughtfully designed pages.  If you have a craft beer lover in your life, this might make the perfect gift to give them (along with their favorite bomber, four, or six-pack) for the holiday season.

Affiliate Links:

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Comments

  1. Of course the first time I saw this I thought of you! And then my second thought was “giftable”. I’m glad to know that it is well written and has some substance, and I will give it as a gift with confidence! (Happy birthday!)

  2. Of course the first time I saw this I thought of you! And then my second thought was “giftable”. I’m glad to know that it is well written and has some substance, and I will give it as a gift with confidence! (Happy birthday!)

  3. I brought this home for Carl – of course, he hasn’t read it yet.

  4. I brought this home for Carl – of course, he hasn’t read it yet.

  5. It’s always great when you find someone with similar tastes so you can trust his opinion about beers you haven’t yet tasted. Sounds like a great gift book and a good read.

  6. It’s always great when you find someone with similar tastes so you can trust his opinion about beers you haven’t yet tasted. Sounds like a great gift book and a good read.

  7. I know just the person I will give this to; after I read it first. 🙂

  8. I know just the person I will give this to; after I read it first. 🙂

  9. Oh, this book will make the perfect gift for a friend of mine who is a lover of microbreweries and craft beer! I can’t say that it would be a book for me, but I know it will be the perfect Christmas gift for him. Thanks Swapna! You are a lifesaver, as I had no idea what I was going to get for him!

  10. Oh, this book will make the perfect gift for a friend of mine who is a lover of microbreweries and craft beer! I can’t say that it would be a book for me, but I know it will be the perfect Christmas gift for him. Thanks Swapna! You are a lifesaver, as I had no idea what I was going to get for him!

  11. I can think of a couple of people this would be a perfect Christmas gift for.

  12. I can think of a couple of people this would be a perfect Christmas gift for.

  13. What a fantastic book for you to review! I’m adding this one to my shopping list. I can think of more than one person who will enjoy it.

  14. What a fantastic book for you to review! I’m adding this one to my shopping list. I can think of more than one person who will enjoy it.

  15. I think my cat Molly will be giving my husband this book for Christmas. Thanks for the great gift idea

  16. I think my cat Molly will be giving my husband this book for Christmas. Thanks for the great gift idea

  17. My fiancee needs this book!

  18. My fiancee needs this book!

  19. My BIL and SIL live in Atlanta and travel extensively and the love microbreweries and new beers…I need to get them this book!! Thank you, and I always think of you when I see new beers.

  20. My BIL and SIL live in Atlanta and travel extensively and the love microbreweries and new beers…I need to get them this book!! Thank you, and I always think of you when I see new beers.

  21. Ooooh this would be PERFECT for my husband!! I think his brother would really enjoy it too… hmm, I’ll either have to get this for my husband or let him know about it and have us get it for his brother. Thanks for the heads up and great review!

  22. Ooooh this would be PERFECT for my husband!! I think his brother would really enjoy it too… hmm, I’ll either have to get this for my husband or let him know about it and have us get it for his brother. Thanks for the heads up and great review!

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