What you see above is the Beer Bar, the latest technological innovation meant to simplify the current trend of home brewing. Beer Bar comes to us from Sparkling Water Markers, the same company responsible for the homemade soft drink system the SodaStream. However, what it does can scarcely be considered “brewing.”
Last year, Paste reviewed a $2,000 home brewing machine called the PicoBrew Zymatic that brewed a “decent” porter in the Paste office one afternoon.
As reviewer and veteran home brewer Jim Vorel noted in that review: “There’s a booming market of gadgetry involved in making the job easier and faster, but no matter what kind of technology you’re employing, brewing—and all-grain brewing in particular—is a process that eats up chunks of time both on brew day, bottling day, etc.”
“Bah to all that!” says SodaStream. Rather than wait days, the Beer Bar boasts a brewing process of mere seconds. All the machine needs are two basic ingredients: sparkling water and a “unique beer concentrate” that produces a brew called “Blondie.”
Oh, no, we’re not talking about an ultra rich craft brew flavor that mimics the taste of a vanilla brownie.
We’re talking about a 4.5% ABV light beer with a “smooth authentic taste, and a hop filled aroma.” Or in other words, it’s making some sort of blonde ale or helles lager from beer-flavored concentrate. Whether this can actually be considered “beer” is debatable.
Only enthusiasts in the “European beer capitals” of Germany and Switzerland can obtain their very own Beer Bar. Currently, liters of the beer concentrate are on sale for €2.99, or around $3.34 here in the U.S. Each liter of concentrate produces an eventual three liters of “beer.”
Unfortunately, state side home brew enthusiasts will have to wait until late 2016 to early 2017 to consume this unique sparkling water/beer concentrate mixture.
Until then, read up on the “10 Most Common Mistakes Home Brewers Make.”