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Good Beer Hunting

Feb 1, 2020

Welcome to Mother of Invention—a special series of the GBH Podcast made in partnership with Guinness devoted to innovation in the brewing world, both historical and contemporary. In this series, we ask the question: if necessity is the mother of invention, what is the necessity that’s driving people to solve a problem, meet a challenge, or explore a new opportunity—and what are they doing about it?

This series started in collaboration with Guinness, an underwriter for GBH for three years running. Guinness has a reputation for being a technical innovator—whether it’s draft technology, the invention of the nitro widget in the can, training the world how to pour a proper pint, or achieving unprecedented consistency in their breweries around the world. But necessity and innovation come in all sorts of forms for breweries big and small, and are reflected in the cultural influences around them. 

So this year we decided to go to Denver during the Great American Beer Festival, when we knew we’d have a critical mass of influential and hard-working people from across the industry in one place. We set up shop and conducted two full days of interviews. And while the resulting conversations vary widely in terms of topics and experiences, some patterns began to emerge.

In our fourth and final episode, we’re going to take everything we’ve learned and apply it to the experience of the end consumer: the beer drinker. 

With so much newfound permission in beer—whether we’re talking about legal constraints being lifted, new spaces for selling and drinking beer being made available, the uniting of manufacturing and hospitality operations, or the contexts in which beer education is taking place—there are plenty of opportunities to talk about the people doing something new and often unprecedented.

We’ll begin in an unexpected place: a small-town Connecticut library.

This is Mother of Invention. Listen in.