Round 2: Beer is back in Food & Wine Classic world |

Round 2: Beer is back in Food & Wine Classic world

For the second consecutive year, Andy Chabot, left, and Roy Milner of Blackberry Barm in Tennessee hosted a beer tasting session at the Food & Wine Classic.
David Krause / The Aspen Times

The guys from Blackberry Farm in Tennessee brought another successful beer tasting as the conversation ranged from pils to hops to cans.

The round of six beers included the original brew that started New Belgium Brewing in Colorado — Abbey Belgian-style dubbel (sorry, Fat Tire fans) — and the collaboration between Blackberry and Food & Wine magazine for the publication’s 40th anniversary.

And then the burning beer question came up: Do brews taste better or worse in a can, and why now is the pushing really taking off among U.S. craft brewers?

Roy Milner, who runs the brewery at Blackberry and has spent 25 years as a craft brewer, said the biggest step is canning technology is better and not nearly as expensive, saying the pricetag used to be about $10 million for a serious canning setup.

“The two biggest enemies of beer are light and oxygen. Cans are the future,” Milner, who gave a nod to the ease of toting aluminum when hiking, biking, rafting and outdoors-ing. “I love them. And, they are the easiest format to transport in an outdoor setting.”

Milner said the quick ascent of New Belgium’s Fat Tire, which really took off in the mid-1990s, pushed the “Abbey dubbel into the janitor’s closet after” but the brewery will always keep the original recipe in its beer quiver.

The “World’s Greatest Beers” event returns this afternoon at the Limelight, but get there early. The 80-person room was filled up to the brim.


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