Floatingsheep.org, a website run by geography enthusiasts hoping to make sense of the wealth of geotagged tweets has put out a map highlighting the regional differences of mass market beer. Using location information inbedded in over 1 million tweets taken over the span of almost one year, the group was able to put together a map showing how certain beer brands are popular in various parts of the country based on the amount of references the brand got.Not surprisingly, the closer a region is geographically to the headquarters of a beer brand the more it gets referenced; Coors is popular in the Rockies, Sam Adams does well in the northeast. But the map does offer some insights, including listing some regional beers one (such as myself) may not be familiar with. Grainbelt is a beer popular in the Minnesota region, Olympia does well in, you guessed it, the Pacific Northwest. The no mans land between Ohio and Indiana is apparently fascinated with an unpronounceable beer called Hudepohl. It also shows the overlap that certain brands have, especially here in the northeast. National Bohemian isn’t necessarily hard to find around the southeast PA region, but I don’t know of a whole lot of people that go nuts for it. Yet the map clearly shows it ranging from near Pittsburgh up through Northern Pennsylvania, almost to the New York Border. Corona, popular in the southwest, also gets some love thanks (I guess) to the Jersey Shore.
Interestingly enough, the article describes the beers that made the list as “cheap” regional favorites. Natty Bo and Schlitz fit the bill alright, but I don’t consider Goose Island “cheap” despite its ownership by parent company AB Inbev. Same goes with Sam Adams and Saranac. I prefer to think of the list as mass marketed beers that is a little more inclusive than just the the big three. This map is a part of an actual article written by two members of the website and published in a journal. Those very curious about geotagged tweets and beer can purchase the article here, if they feel so inclined. The website takes a look at the regionality of beer and wine often, so those curious can dig deeper to see its relationship with bars, church, and so on.