Tasting: October 12, 2013
Style: Pumpkin Porter
Beer #: 495
Fermentation without Representation Epic Brewing
The impact of the current government shutdown has crept into some obscure corners of everyday life. Believe it or not, the shutdown will have some impact on the craft beer industry. The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) is a part of the Treasury Department and is responsible for approving new breweries – and more importantly, new beer labels. Why labels? The TTB has oversight over many things on a label from organic claims to what constitutes a malt beverage and any misleading claims.
Before the shutdown approval for a new label was about seventy-five days so as we conclude the second week of the shutdown, new craft beer targeted to reach shelves in early 2014 are being held up. The shutdown doesn’t impact the mega-brewers like Budweiser and Coors as they don’t alter their labels or introduce new beers as frequently as craft brewers.
While I’m on the subject of labels, many states have rules governing beer labels as well. For example, Founders Breakfast Stout can’t be sold in New Hampshire because the state prohibits children being used on alcoholic beverage label. I’ll also add that New Hampshire bans sale of beer that exceeds 12% (no Bourbon County Brand Stout 15.4% for them).
If it interests you, here’s a site with general rules by state:
I love the name of this beer – Fermentation without Representation and thought it was was apropos for the commentary on our current government situation. As you may know, Washington DC license plates carry the protest motto “Taxation Without Representation”. Washington DC is a special federal district and although it carries three electoral votes it does not have a voting member of congress.
Fermentation without Representation is a collaborative brew between Utah’s Epic Brewing and Washington DC’s DC Brau Brewing. It’s described as an imperial pumpkin porter. It pours a light cola brown. Some toffee out of the gate followed by clove and cinnamon. Not much in the way of pumpkin (as usual with these pumpkin ales). A bit fizzy and light. If you like pumpkin spices – you might enjoy. As you know I’m not a fan – but it was a gift from fellow pop – John. Not a fan 81 points.