The Sunshine Economy
9:10 am
Mon March 24, 2014

Brew Askew: The Beer Business In South Florida

The Funky Buddha Brewery held a large outdoor festival to release its first bottled offering, the Maple Bacon Coffee Porter. Packaging beers is a milestone for small breweries.
Credit Maria Murriel / WLRN

Up until 2012, there was only one microbrewery in South Florida. But after Tequesta Brewing Company's first colleague, Due South Brewing Company, opened that summer, more have bubbled up all over.

And the newness of this industry partly contributes to the difficulties brewers face when trying to open their businesses -- local and state laws prohibit even beer tastings at storesmake even beer tastings difficult.

The Funky Buddha Brewery in Oakland Park is South Florida's best known. Its opening last June cemented the area's reputation in the country's fervent craft-beer community. South Florida craft beers are becoming increasingly popular with collectors and coveted by big beer-industry brands.

Food-industry consultant Technomic reported a majority of Americans choose beer over other alcoholic drinks, and most also consider it important for bars to have a strong craft-beer selection. So local restaurants and other businesses are catching the craft-beer wave.

We'll talk to craft brewers and legislators influencing the beer business. After our show, you'll wonder how you never knew just how complicated beer is. Follow our chat below.