All across the country, craft breweries are memorializing important people, places and events from American history and folklore. Thousands of breweries and beers in the U.S. today are named in remembrance of an important piece of America and the stories behind those names can now be found in one place - Hops and History! Inside the pages of Hops and History, readers will find fascinating stories about important Native Americans, the Revolutionary War, America’s westward expansion, military heroes, the Civil War, presidents, celebrities, scoundrels, lawmen, gunfighters, pirates, runaway elephants, supernatural roosters, mysterious creatures and much more. To be clear, this is not a book about the history of beer but is instead a collection of stories about the United States of America, all of which are inspired by American breweries and beers! Each page of Hops and History features an American brewery, one of their beers, and a one-page narrative that tells the story behind the name of the beer. In total, 275 breweries, beers and stories are featured, including breweries from every U.S. State, and all of the stories memorialize an important part of the United States of America, often a part that is particularly relevant to the brewery and their corner of the country.
Dent shares the stories behind a host of craft beer names in this endearing encyclopedic survey. While Dent doesn’t share his criteria for selecting the breweries or their beers, readers will get drawn into stories such as that of Miss Fancy’s Tripel, a Belgian ale from Alabama’s Avondale Brewing Company named after a retired circus elephant; the exploits of gangsters such as Detroit’s Purple Hill Gang, for which the Atwater brewery named a pilsner; and Prohibition-era Atlantic City political boss Enoch “Nucky” Johnson (there’s a Nucky’s Empirial IPA from the Garden State Beer Company). Lawmen also make frequent appearances, such as the trio memorialized by Oklahoma City’s Three Guardsmen IPA, and Henry Plummer, a prolific killer turned sheriff turned criminal in Montana memorialized in a Gambler Amber. Fans of ephemera and regional U.S. history will have a field day with the profiles of places, such as Stiltsville, a tiny village outside Miami built entirely on stilts, and now home to the Concrete Beach Brewery. This deep dive into some zany American brewing history will spark a thirst in beer nerds. (Self-published)