10 Craft Beer Trends for Your Taproom

Revel Blog | Revel Systems | July 1, 2022 |

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10 Craft Beer Trends Your Restaurant Needs to Know

Taproom popularity had been soaring for a decade when it was blindsided by a blow from the now-fading pandemic. The former crowds, having suffered their own personal beatdowns, have had a sluggish response to taproom and brewery re-openings.

Their interests weren’t far removed, however, because statistics show it’s not necessarily about location, location, location. Social distancing translated into a boon for the alcohol industry in general and the craft beer brewery industry in particular. The craft beer production volume slump of -9 percent in 2020 turned into an upsurge of 7.9 percent in 2021.

Craft beer, taprooms, and bars are on pace for a steady but sure rebound despite jabs and economic uppercuts. For 84% of breweries, taproom sales are the most profitable channel. In big craft beer news, fully 76% of craft breweries expect sales growth in 2022.

Restaurants offering beer, wine, and spirits can enjoy a lift by getting on board with these hopeful trends. The following list of current craft beer trends has some hitherto alien attributes, much like the shifting dynamics in the world at large.

1-Marrying Beer with Moderation

In 2022, there is a growing consciousness and movement toward overall health and wellness. Enter long-beloved pale lagers, which are generally lighter in flavor and lower in both calories and alcohol content. Lagers are in fine alignment with this prevailing trend of putting moderation at the forefront. Pilsners are all lagers, though the reverse doesn’t apply. In other words, pilsners are the most famous of the lagers, and their alcohol by volume (ABV) content is about 4.2 to 5.8 percent.

But that’s not how low ABV can go in craft beers. A beer and brewery concoction with 2.5% ABV might contain 50 percent citrus juice and 50 percent light beer. The ideal for the first of the craft beer industry trends is crafting an adult beverage suitable for both daytime drinking and active living.

2-High-Tech Hops and Yeast

Some craft beer breweries are putting science at the forefront in deference to fans of IPA who foresee the coming effects of climate change. Designed for dry hopping, for example, Spectrum is one of several concentrated liquid products offered by John I. Haas.

Synthesized ingredients such as bioengineered yeast and flavor additives are increasingly being used in the craft beer industry. During the beer brewing process, these high-tech strains help yeast create tropical aromas such as guava, passionfruit, and grapefruit.

Phenomena such as wildfires and climate change have an adverse effect on hops and fruit, necessitating a reduction of the use of top-quality raw ingredients in beer.

Breweries Backing Belief Systems

Flavor factors such as hops, malt, carbonation, and yeast aside, many of today’s younger consumers are looking for a beer that’s loud and proud about its purpose. Not just any purpose, though. They want to support the best breweries that take a stand for their values and missions.

Examples of craft beer trends that can attract certain crowds, in particular, include the following:

3-Organic Breweries

Organic breweries that focus on such things as IPAs, water conservation, soil health, and biodiversity conservation are halfway there in attracting planet-conscious clientele. To draw more interest, an organic craft beer company should also concentrate on eliminating the use of inorganic fertilizers, pesticides, and GMOs.

4-Brewing for a Cause

Brew for a cause, whether a beer company backs Veterans, anti-gun sentiments, rich Native American customs, or any other group of folks with common values and missions.

5-Finding Cause Alignment

Different factions can combine and enjoy further reach by fighting aligned causes through craft brewing. For instance, a coalition dedicated to fighting workplace discrimination can combine with another group concerned about sexual harassment, all under the umbrella of crafted beer breweries sympathetic to their cause.

6-Craft Beer Featuring Local Ingredients

Craft breweries are becoming destination hotspots in all corners of the nation. A much-appreciated aspect of on-site breweries is that they often feature local ingredients. Local flavors can be sampled in beer industry brewing, where, for example, close to 100% of the hops may be grown in the state. Creativity abounds in local breweries, where beer with local ingredients might be perfectly paired with regional foods.

7-Throwback Craft Beer Styles

Among older patrons and fans of the best craft beer, this may be the most familiar of the beer industry trends. There was once a time when darker ales were the preferred brewery fare, and those days are having a comeback. A true contrast to blondish beer drinks, beer-flavored ale is being joyfully rediscovered in fresh brews. Belgian strong dark ale, as an example of a classic, boasts a richer flavor and higher ABV. These traditional beers vary in malts and hops. Arguably the best craft beers, they may be on the fruity or spicy side. In all, though, expect rich, complex flavors.

8-Domestic Malt

Keep images of freighters languishing offshore near harbors on one end of the country to the other in mind. Now, think domestic malt. Supply-chain snags aren’t yet a thing of the past. All facets of brewing have been affected by a disruption in the supply chain, including access to brewing equipment and the production of aluminum cans. Experts say 2022 will continue to see a hitch in malt imports. Even climate is contributing to the upset. Domestic malt companies are preparing and poised to take up the slack.

9-Fruited Sour Beers

Another product of our times has emerged in the form of fruited sour beers. This is a relatively new crafted beer style. It joins a hot climate with high demand and a progressive attitude toward flavored beer. Kettle souring is the process behind fruited sour ales. This way to make beer is quicker and cheaper than classic methods.

Sipping a fruited sour beer, you can expect tanginess with a puckering sourness or a sweet edge, depending on the brewer’s choice of balance between acid and fruit. Textures range from thick to light crushable in these craft beers commonly referred to as smoothie sours.

10-Non-Alcoholic Beer

With non-alcoholic (NA) crafted beer products up 120 percent since 2020, it’s unmistakable that coming out of the Covid-19 trauma has placed health front and center in the minds of consumers. Another undeniable reality is the past reputation NA beer has had of bad taste or utter blandness. Tremendous headway in producing tasty NA beers has been made, however. Alcohol-free craft beer that is another trend for restaurants to consider taking advantage of in 2022.


No matter how you plan to approach your taproom rebound, the good news is you have options! Consider applying a tip or two from this blog post, and if you're really looking to shake things up, take a closer look at your tech stack. A cloud-based POS might just be the technology you need to stay nimble and adapt with consumer preferences and broad, industry changes. 

Get a free demo today of Revel's cloud POS and take your taproom to new heights!