23.3 gallons of beer per person sounds like a lot, but it turns out to be not nearly enough, at least if Maryland wants to rise in the ranks of the nation’s top-beer drinkers. (Who happen to be New Hampshire-ites and North Dakotans, who apparently don’t have much else to do with their time.) According to the Beer Institute, probably a pretty cool place to work, we’re 47th in the nation in terms of per-capita beer drinking, which means we need to start chugging from those kegs with Natty Boh, stat.
The only states that drink less beer than Maryland have decent excuses: in New York and New Jersey, they prefer cocktails; in Utah, they’re Mormon. But we even drink less beer than Kentucky, where bourbon is pretty much an official state beverage. (The upside, of course, is that New York, New Jersey, and Utah are the states with the lowest numbers of drunk driving-related fatalities; Maryland ranks 31st nationally, with .511 deaths per 10,000 people.)
A modest proposal: although we’ll never (publicly) say mean things about Mr. Boh, it isn’t really a local product anymore. Maybe what we need is more places like Brewer’s Art, where the art of beer-brewing (and beer-drinking) is expressed at its highest level. Or maybe we should just be satisfied with our relative lack of beer bellies.
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