Beer writer Joshua M. Bernstein‘s new book, Brewed Awakening: Behind the Beers and Brewers Leading the World’s Craft Brewing Revolution, which I received a copy to review, is a lively journal of contemporary craft brewing.
Each section of the book encapsulates a different theme, with explanatory sections, and a few spotlighted breweries, brewers, or beers. Illustrations and photographs spice up the presentation, which mimics a journal, featuring subsections “taped” in (sometimes on ersatz scraps of lined paper), and with snapshots attached with “paper clips.” At the end of each section and subsection a list of beers is provided that illustrates the topic just reviewed. When you sit down with this book, have a notepad and pencil nearby so you can make a list of the beers that pique your curiosity.
Beers covered include extreme beers, sessions, gose, ancient ales, barrel-aged brews, seasonal ales, and more. Topics such as gypsy brewing, collaborator brewing, nano brewing, and beer-pairing dinners, are also covered. History, ancient and contemporary, is touched on. Domestic breweries get the bulk of the mentions, with plenty of Oregon beers and brewers represented, but several international breweries are also spotlighted.
I enjoyed the book. Though encyclopedic, it’s not an encyclopedia. I read it cover to cover, gleaning (and reinforcing) knowledge along the way. I took copious notes on beers to look out for (seriously, have a notepad and pencil nearby!).