Yesterday was a very good day for beer journalism. Long-time beer writers and editors Andy Crouch and John Holl announced that they have bought the assets of the defunct All About Beer magazine. They plan to resurrect the magazine as well as to preserve and share the archives of its 39 years of articles published during AAB’s previous run.
It’s no secret that during the decades when Craft Beer has burgeoned, print journalism and the pleasures of holding a magazine in your hands has fallen out of favor with both advertisers and a large segment of the public. With these economic realities in mind, Holl and Crouch will bring AAB back in a digital-only format.
Crouch and Holl are seasoned beer journalists and authors. Crouch – who describes himself as “Noted Twitter Villain” for his strongly held beer opinions – has stepped into the publisher role. Holl, who had previously edited All About Beer, will be back in that role. The old website is back, with new material and without ads – so far. If you have something to advertise or want to be a sponsor, this is a good time to get in touch. Right now AAB is making a call for readers to subscribe (for free) and to consider supporting the publication through Patreon. Crouch and Holl are well known entities in the beer storytelling world who can count on some goodwill from all the people who have read them or listened to them over the years.
The demise of most of the early print beer journals has left a void in the reporting of beer industry news. These days there are more and more interesting stories to be told about the people behind the beer, but fewer channels to get the news out. Social media offers small bites rather than deep dives. The little news that gets picked up by mainstream press outlets generally relates to lawsuits or brewery closings.
For many years the two of us wrote for the Celebrator Beer News and Beer Advocate Magazine. We were privileged to report on a wide array of brewery openings, social events, brewers’ personal stories and beer travel. Writing for an editor with the constraint of a deadline is a different animal than blogging, and it usually shows. The beer world needs more professional beer journalism, from the local to the global.
Resurrecting AAB is an encouraging sign. Hopefully, the re-emergence of AAB will be vigorous and long-lasting, and will re-open the doors to a higher quality of reporting and good beer reading once again. Get on over there and subscribe to see what AAB does next.
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