5. It's beer's offseason
A look at the Brewers Almanac put together by Washington-based lobbying group The Beer Institute indicates that American beer consumption drops around Labor Day and doesn't really pick up again until folks start buying their Memorial Day 30-packs in May. St. Patrick's Day is the only modest boost in between.
In 2010, for example, Americans hit their peak beer consumption in June, when they took down more than 20.1 million barrels. Their thirst for beer kept them buying roughly 19.5 million barrels a month until the end of summer, but trickled off every month thereafter until they were down to 15 million barrels each month in January and February of 2011. By March and St. Patrick's Day, however, that amount shot up to 19.1 million before settling back to 17 million in April just before the summer resurgence.
The past decade is marked with similar March upticks, with the greatest prompting hibernating revelers in 2006 to up their beer intake from 15.4 million barrels that February to 19.2 million the next month. That would be great, if it meant anything. Last March, beer production was off 5% from 2012. Despite the St. Patrick's Day surge, when more than 3 million pints of Guinness are sold in the U.S. alone, Diageo-Guinness sales in the U.S. still fell an estimated 7% for the first six months of 2013.
There are great spring bocks and kellerbiers out there, but they're swamped by lesser offerings and a calendar that's unkind to beer until it's actually spring.