Any Of It. All Of It. In Any Size.
I was born and raised in Western Pennsylvania and have lived here most of my life. After 11 years of purchasing beer in a certain way, you become accustomed to the run around that comes with it. Things have gotten better recently but there are still some restrictions to the way we purchase beer in the state of Pennsylvania (PA). We can buy beer at the grocery store now… as long as you purchase it at a different register, in a different part of the store and it’s under 192 ounces. But hey, it’s progress right? I understand that there are some states that have it worse, but PA has been relatively old school with their beer laws until recently. That leads me to a day, not too long ago that felt like Christmas in July.
I headed down to my local beer distributor to stock up on some beverages for my son’s birthday party. For those not familiar with how things work in PA, this is the only place we can buy a full case or keg of beer. I stroll the aisles of the old train depot turned beer distributor, looking for some beer to enjoy in the summer heat. I grabbed a case of Bud Light for my family (oh, who am I kidding, I’ll probably drink some myself), some Stone Go-To IPA (mainly for me, but also for my IPA drinking family members), and then I began to check out what else they had in stock. This place always has a pretty good selection considering it’s 45 minutes away from the city (but keep in mind everything is mainly packaged in full cases). Thankfully about 2 years ago these distributors were granted permission to sell 12 packs as long as they were packaged separately. Most places it is still hard to find a large variety of them but occasionally you can locate some good ones.
Then I spotted a case of 16 oz cans with a matte black finish and a touch of gold detailing. Could it be what I think it is? It was an entire case of Nimble Giant by Tröegs Independent Brewing. You see, I've had this experience before and I knew better than to get my hopes up. Finding a delicious beer that is only brewed once a year on a smaller scale, sitting there on the shelf just staring at me. I've been accustomed to reminding my self “Remember, by the case only. Wonder if I can find some people to split it with? Maybe I’ll just buy the whole thing?!”
While I was at the register, I decided it wouldn’t hurt just to ask if there was any way to split up that case of Nimble Giant. To my astonishment his reply was, “Sure! How many did you want? A four pack or just one?” My face embarrassingly lit up and then I immediately opted for a four pack. I spoke with the guy for a bit about it and he informed me that they now sell any size and amount of beer (with some limitation). This may not be such a big deal to those with different laws but it was fantastic news for the people of PA.
After over a decade of purchasing beer, having to walk past beer that I wanted (including cases of limited release bombers, and other special once a year brews), only having the option to buy a case of 24 or go home with none. I could now get any of it, all of it, in any size I wanted. Rejoice!