B UZZ: Hey, Marnie, I see it's Philly Beer Week. How come everyone makes such a big deal about local beer nowadays? I always thought the good stuff was imported.
Marnie: That may have been accurate decades ago, Buzz, but times have changed. Many local beers are now fantastic. Beer quality is determined by the people who make it, not the region where it's made.
Buzz: I thought all the good beer came from Germany.
Marnie: It's true that certain places have earned a reputation for excellent beer, like Germany and Belgium, Colorado and Oregon. That's a feature of their local culture, though, not evidence of regional superiority, and like all social constructs, culture can change pretty quickly. Demand for better beer has been growing in the U.S. since the 1970s. This has led to the emergence of quality-minded craft brewers to meet the need.