Happy New Year

Greetings and best wishes to all for the new year! 2006 will mark the tenth anniversary for Shelton Brothers, and we plan to celebrate, big time. What does that mean to you? Plenty. We’ve got a bunch of new beers coming, from such far-flung places as Grimstad, Norway and Blumenau, Brazil.What else can you expect this year?  For starters, just what everyone wanted — a more opinionated, outspoken Shelton Brothers.  The way we see it, after ten years, we’ve earned beer capital, and we intend to spend it.  To that end, look for Brother Daniel’s State of the Union address on January 31st.

You can also expect a lot more from the Franconian Brewer’s Guild and from brewers all over the world who are making incredibly complex, low-alcohol beer.  Extreme beer?  I’ll tell you what’s extreme:  Daniel Thiriez’s Extra, at only 4.5% alcohol, or Mahr’s Leicht at an amazing 2.8%, or Marc Limet’s Bink Blond, a Belgian ale of only 5.5%.

Let’s face it, friends . . . just about anyone can make a high-alcohol beer with lots of flavor (though it’s amazing how many brewers, especially lately in Belgium, are brewing strong beers that are, shall we say, rather short on character and flavor.  More about that on 31 January.) But how many can make beer that tastes great without knocking you on your ass?  Not many, though you’ll find a few of them in these pages, with more coming to the USA this year.

This will also be the year where we put to rest the myth that we dislike American beer.  You’ll be seeing information here about our friends in the American brewing industry — people like Ron Jeffries at Jolly Pumpkin Ales in Michigan or Tom Baker at Heavyweight Brewing in New Jersey — who embody the pioneering spirit of American brewing without having to blast you with alcohol in every beer.  Great beer is great beer, no matter where it comes from, and we’re very proud to support innovative brewers from all over the globe.

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