In response to yesterday's report on the Federal Government's role in delaying the distribution of craft beer to a thirsty market, a patriotic American asked a simple question freighted with import. "Maybe it's possible for people to brew, sell, buy, and drink beer without having to ask permission from our bureaucratic betters?", he wondered.
Libertarians, beer-drinkers, and all who chafe at the heavy yoke of bureaucracy, rejoice, for salvation beckons. A team led by former Microsoft exec Bill Mitchell (at this point, aren't we all former Microsoft execs) is on the verge of marketing the PicoBrew Zymatic, "an automatic beer brewing appliance that can create an endless stream of high-quality beers".
Mitchell, whose grandfather invented Tang and Pop Rocks (!), and his brother are avid homebrewers. They started PicoBrew in 2010, frustrated with the inconsistency inherent in the home brewing process, as well as the highly labor-intensive nature of it. Their objective: create the brewer's version of the breadmaker or espresso machine.
The result is both simple to use (and more importantly, clean) and sophisticated enough to enable users to consistently recreate recipes used by the pioneers of the craft brew scene or experiment with their own. The touchscreen-controlled brewing process takes an hour, and according to PicoBrew, beer is ready to drink as soon as five days after brewing.
The PicoBrew team's Kickstarter campaign has yielded more than twice as much funding as required, and the funds will be used to initiate final production activities. I'll buy the machine, but someone else is responsible for designing the labels. And we'll need someone to distract the Feds while we ship the results to our community members outside the DC area. Probably gonna want a lawyer involved, too. I think we've got that covered.