Beijing Begins Brewing Craft Beer

27 Feb

slowboat brewery great leap brewing

Americans aren’t the only people with a craving for great craft beer.  The citizens of China have been showing a huge increase in demand for American ales with their strong economy on the rise giving people the means to afford better tasting, though more expensive, imported beer.  American craft beer exports have increased five-fold over the last five years (though the total sales in 2010 was still a meager $600,000) which has spurred the opening of two craft breweries in Beijing.  Great Leap Brewing and Slowboat Brewery are looking to take advantage of the emerging market with two different brewing styles.  Great Leap which opened in 2010, crafts beers from local ingredients, using Chinese hops as well as locally sourced honey, pepper, coffee beans, and teas while Slowboat imports hops and grains from the typical American farms located in the Pacific Northwest.   “It’s comforting for local Chinese to know the ingredients aren’t Chinese, because of all the food scandals,” said chief executive Chandler Jurinka.  Although the two Beijing breweries are following different strategies, both are pursuing the same goal: to create great tasting beer; and in a huge, emerging market of beer drinkers with extra yuan in their pockets, it’s a recipe for success.

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