Where’s the beer? Zilch local taps at the Hilton

I’m in Dedham, Massachusetts at Crimebake, the annual conference for crime writers sponsored by Sisters in Crime. In some down time, about a hundred of us were crowded into the hotel bar, and looking at the taps, I could see nothing made in New England.  When I asked the server, “Do you have any local beer?” She pointed to the taps and said, “Yes, we have Sam.” There were only four or five taps, and Sam Adams was among them. There was Goose Island from Chicago, Coors, Guinness and Heineken.

Next week, I “attack” the Herculean task of Massachusetts, as I write up the over 100 craft breweries here for my book. It’s going to take me most of 2 weeks to do that. So it boggles my mind that a huge, busy hotel outside Boston doesn’t have one single local beer out of the dozens that are available. Sam, yeah, but what about Pretty Things or Jack’s Abby or Trillium? And then there are brands that have been here long enough for the bar manager to know about.

Could it be that they wouldn’t sell enough or maybe sell too much? Or it could be that the distributor doesn’t carry those local brands.

Anyway, I’ll ask tomorrow. Meantime, I am going to read for awhile, a mystery novel, because in my mystery, someone is found in a mash tun. Tying beer in with fiction has been fun. I’ve been writing this concept for years now. And an agent liked my pitch. So this weekend is about both beer and crime. Like what a crime it is not to carry local beers.

Kate Cone

About Kate Cone

Kate Cone has a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing, is a freelance writer and the author of "What's Brewing in New England: A Guide to Brewpubs and Microbreweries," published by Downeast Publications in 1997. She is currently updating What's Brewing with a second book about New England craft beer to be published in 2015.