we tried it: craft beer of the month club

Need a last minute Father’s Day gift? Read our review, below, of The Original Craft Beer Club

Chad and I have an indulgence tradition. We love ordering beer flights whenever we discover them on menus. A beer flight is when you are given a sample size drink of five different beers to try. Luckily, we have one favorite spot in Hudson, NY that has them all time. They rotate through a variety of local beers from nearby microbreweries, and the selection is always changing. How can we create this effect at home? At first I thought what we needed was a beer flight paddle (this one from Uncommon Goods caught my eye), but we’d have to commit to opening up and drinking four bottles of beer in one sitting. That’s just not something we do very often (lightweights!). The alternative, I decided, was to join a “beer of a month” club. My thinking was that if we had a delivery of exotic beers arriving every month, we could enjoy the flavors every weekend.

After a bit of research, I opted for the Craft Beer Club. From what I could see it was already well reviewed by consumers and the press (Esquire). Here’s the lowdown on how it works.

THE DEAL: The Craft Beer Club, $37.75 per month. You can try it for one month or twelve, up to you! With each delivery, you get twelve bottles, comprised of four different kinds of beer from two different breweries. You can decide the delivery date(s). You can order for one month or only, a whole year, or less.

WHAT YOU’LL GET: All the beers are US-made, and each is from a small production, independent company. One of the reasons why I liked The Craft Beer Club is that all they do is beer, unlike some other beer-of-the-month clubs that are run by companies that also do other things like wine and cheese. Chad just received his first box, and it features the Flying Bison Brewing Company from Buffalo, NY and the Evil Genius Beer Company from eastern Pennsylvania. Also in the box is a one-sheet on each brewery, providing a bit of insider knowledge and the scoop on the beers within. Especially fun for a Father’s Day treat: Recipes are included! You could make a whole feast centered around the beers you just received. Ours included a cold bacon ranch pasta salad that sounds especially yummy. In addition, we got a bottle opener as “free gift” bonus.

The beauty of the Craft Beer Club is the feeling that you’re embracing the local beer movement. It’s like a roadtrip for your taste buds delivered right to your door. We love the information included with the beers, and so far, they’ve been great. (We especially liked Rusty Chain, an amber ale from Flying Bison).

If you’re giving this is a gift, the surprise element will be hard to pull off. I sent the order in Chad’s name, because it’s coming for several months and I wanted him to enjoy getting the package. But, there’s no way to include a gift card, so when it came, he didn’t know what it was or who it was from. Also, I was hoping there would be four different breweries featured a month – not four beers from two breweries. But honestly, that’s a minor a point.

THE VERDICT: If sampling local beers is a favorite part of your travel adventures, you should give the Craft Beer Club a try. Having ales and IPAs from macro breweries in your fridge will liven up any meal. It’s a bit pricey, but worth it for the well curated selection.

Visit Craftbeerclub.com or call 1-800-200-2959.

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