Disclosure: This review may have been compensated in goods or services, but the opinions are solely those of Great Beer Now.
Do you love to try new beer? If you’re of the persuasion that I am, then you prefer new beer to what is familiar and you will spend long spans of time browsing the beer aisle at your favorite beverage store, looking for something unique. But there is an easier way to get the new beer you crave, and that is by joining the Microbrewed Beer of the Month Club, the original beer of the month operative, still going strong.
Pick Your Membership
With the Microbrewed Beer of the Month Club, you have several different clubs you can join. They are:
The U.S. Microbrewed Beer Club– This club ships 12 bottles of beer to your home each month. The shipments consist of 12 oz. cans or bottles from two different craft breweries, with three bottles/cans of 4 different styles.
The U.S. and International Variety Beer Club– With this club, members will receive a mixture of domestic and international beer, with 12 bottles/cans of 12. oz or similarly sized servings and three bottles/cans of 4 different styles.
The Hop Heads Beer Club– We all know how popular hoppy IPA and other styles are and this club is geared specifically to the hop loving crowd. Each month, members will receive 12 bottles or cans, with three cans/bottles of four different styles. The shipment can include international as well as domestic beer and can include anything that has an emphasis on hops, whether it is IPA, Double IPA, IPL, beer that focuses on experimental hops, etc.
International Beer Club– If foreign brew is your desire, then you will love the International Beer Club. Any nation that brews and distributes its beer is fair game and with this club, you will get more variety than with the others: Two bottles each of 6 different styles.
The Rare Beer Club– Perfect for those with more eccentric tastes, the Rare Beer Club sets its sights on extremely hard to find beers, such as limited releases and exclusive brews. Wine size, 750 ml bottles of beer will be shipped to your home each month, with either 2, 4, or 6 total bottles consisting of beer from two different breweries and two different styles. You select the quantity level that you like.
With each of the above options, members will receive a newsletter with extensive information on each beer, including vital stats like alcohol level IBU, etc., along with other useful information and trivia surrounding the beer and its background/origins.
The Beer is Here
Microbrewed Beer of the Month Club is easily the best known among the different beer clubs in the United States. This club has been around since 1994 and it continues to expand and improve each year to keep up with the changing beer landscape and customer desires.
I have been a member of the U.S. Microbrewed Beer Club in the past and I found it quite enjoyable. I remember my first encounter with the club about fifteen years ago, when I received a membership as a gift. As you might imagine, the monthly shipment was one of the most anticipated moments each month for me. I anxiously awaited the arrival of the box and tore into it the moment it arrived, anxious to discover the contents within.
One common concern about this and other beer clubs is the cost, and it’s something I still here brought up from time to time when people are pondering a membership. At current prices, the U.S. Microbrewed Beer Club costs about $43 per month for 12 bottles of beer. Yes, this is more than you would pay for a 12 pack of beer purchased from your local beer store, but when you factor all the variables, it is still a more than reasonable deal.
I look at it like this. If you want to try as many different beers as possible from your local store, you obviously cannot mix and match the beer bottles or cans in existing six or twelve packs because stores don’t allow that. Instead, you have to go to a store where they offer individual bottles or cans for sale. I have many such stores in my area of west Houston, Texas and each bottle or can typically sells for as little as $2.50 each to as much as $4.50 each, depending on the strength of the beer, supply/demand, and other factors. From my experience, the average price per bottle is about $3, which works out to $36 for a 12 pack. So, as you can see, the total cost of the U.S. Microbrewed Beer of the Month Club is not much more than I would pay if I tried to accomplish the same thing myself by purchasing individual cans or bottles. And let’s not forget that, with a club like this, you get to enjoy the convenience of having beer show up at your home and you get to try beer that you couldn’t otherwise try on your own. All things considered, the small premium you pay is easily worth it.
Microbrewed Beer of the Month Club has survived and thrived much longer than other, similar clubs and they even have a wine club, cigar club, chocolate club, cheese club, and flower club for those who are so inclined. I will likely stick with beer, but I do love the idea of a cheese of the month club. Pairing a membership to the cheese of the month with, say, the Hop Heads Beer Club would make for a heavenly combination and a great gift idea. I’m enjoying a bottle of L’Epouvantail Noir from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales right now, courtesy of the Rare Beer Club, and thinking about the cheese of the month club has me fantasizing about the possible taste combinations if a complex farmhouse ale such as this was paired with just the right cheese.
When it comes to drinking beer, I’m like most other craft beer lovers I know. Nine times out of ten, I would rather try a new beer than drink something familiar and the Microbrewed Beer of the Month Club lets you do exactly that. There is nothing more thrilling then opening a box in the mail and discovering a dozen bottles or cans of craft beer inside or a pair of rare beers and the convenience cannot be topped. Give one of these clubs a try yourself, or better yet, offer one to a friend or family member as a gift. It’s a great way to sample new beer, month after month, and it’s the gift that keeps on giving.