IN ALABAMA, 2008 was the year everything changed. Previously, it was illegal to create or sell beer that exceeded 6% ABV in the state, therefore, eliminating many of the beer styles available at most craft breweries across the country. Before 2008, it was also illegal to operate a taproom at a brewery or sell beer directly to a consumer. This was the year that Alabama said “hell no” to beer restrictions.
In May 2009, thanks to Free The Hops’ Gourmet Beer Bill, the 6% ABV limit was raised to 13.9% ABV. In 2011, restrictions that caused difficulties in opening breweries and selling onsite were lessened, and in May 2013, the ban on home brewing was lifted. We’ve come a long way in such a short time thanks to organizations like Free the Hops, and we couldn’t be more excited. Thanks to their work, we can embark on an unbeatable craft brew crawl through the state of Alabama.