“Airplane food; what’s up with that?” asked the 80s comedian. If you have often flown the friendly skies, then you know that airplane food is not so friendly. It’s like eating something from an alien world that has been freeze-dried, then microwaved. And up until this point, your beverage choice has basically consisted of water, Coke, orange juice, and canned Budweiser. But there is some great news for craft beer lovers who frequently fly: several US airlines are getting in on the trend of serving (canned) craft beer on flights!
The key is canning: airline stewards and stewardesses (is there a more politically-correct term these days? If so, I honestly do not know!) have to stow dozens of drinks in small, tight spaces, so cans are much more feasible than bottles. While I am not the world’s greatest fan of canned craft beer, I have to admit that I would much rather have, say, a craft IPA on a cross-country flight, than a crappy Budweiser.
Delta has been serving Sam Adams (in bottles, actually) for years, and Virgin American has offered 21st Amendment Brewery offerings for a while now, but others are joining in. Southwest Airlines now sells (cans) New Belgium Brewing Co.’s Fat Tire. And Sam Adams is now available on JetBlue flights, frugal as they otherwise are. Alaska Airlines carries some (unidentified) craft beers from Oregon and Hawaii, and finally, Sun Country sells beer from Minneapolis’ Surly Brewing Co.
According to some scientists (and tasters), beer loses some aroma, and becomes more bitter, at high altitudes. But overall, we flyers have two choices to accompany our gourmet roasted peanuts or cardboard-dry chicken breast. We can choose a can of Budweiser, Coors Light, or some other such horse urine, or a craft beer. And I don’t know about you, but for me, the choice is obvious, and welcomed.