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The cost of a beer the year you turned 21

  • 1992

    - Price of a 16-oz beer: $0.81
    - Inflation-adjusted price: $1.48 (#30 most expensive in last 68 years)
    - Number of U.S. breweries: 359
    - U.S. beer production: 202.1 million barrels (-0.1% change from previous year)

    After just two years in business, Colorado’s third microbrewery, Breckenridge Brewery, outgrew its mountain-town facility and moved production to Denver. This indicated big things for the operation as it became one of the nation’s first microbreweries to sell out to a brewing behemoth when it reached a purchase agreement with Anheuser InBev in 2015.

  • 1993

    - Price of a 16-oz beer: $0.81
    - Inflation-adjusted price: $1.44 (#46 most expensive in last 68 years)
    - Number of U.S. breweries: 446
    - U.S. beer production: 202.6 million barrels (+0.3% change from previous year)

    It’s another banner year for craft brewery openings, several of which endure to this day. That list includes Vino’s Brewpub (Arkansas), Red Brick Brewing (Georgia), Mickey Finn’s (Illinois), Bluegrass Brewing (Kentucky), Oliver Breweries (Maryland), and Palmetto Brewing (South Carolina).

  • 1994

    - Price of a 16-oz beer: $0.81
    - Inflation-adjusted price: $1.40 (#55 most expensive in last 68 years)
    - Number of U.S. breweries: 601
    - U.S. beer production: 202.0 million barrels (-0.3% change from previous year)

    In California alone, there were 84 microbreweries or brewpubs in operation. That’s one more than there were total breweries in the nation 10 years earlier.

  • 1995

    - Price of a 16-oz beer: $0.81
    - Inflation-adjusted price: $1.37 (#66 most expensive in last 68 years)
    - Number of U.S. breweries: 858
    - U.S. beer production: 199.2 million barrels (-1.4% change from previous year)

    It’s a brewery sprint across America as four new breweries open every week in 1995. That includes trailblazing Rhode Island brewery Dogfish Head, which would go on to ignite America’s obsession with heavy IPAs.

  • 1996

    - Price of a 16-oz beer: $0.84
    - Inflation-adjusted price: $1.38 (#63 most expensive in last 68 years)
    - Number of U.S. breweries: 1,149
    - U.S. beer production: 201.1 million barrels (+0.9% change from previous year)

    Brew City’s oldest brewery, Pabst, closed its Milwaukee brewery where it had churned out cheap lager since 1844. The brand laid off its entire brewery staff and began contracting out its brewing to other breweries.

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  • 1997

    - Price of a 16-oz beer: $0.84
    - Inflation-adjusted price: $1.35 (#69 most expensive in last 68 years)
    - Number of U.S. breweries: 1,396
    - U.S. beer production: 198.9 million barrels (-1.1% change from previous year)

    Amid the explosion in craft breweries, Michigan’s award-winning Founders Brewing opened in Grand Rapids. And Georgia got another acclaimed brewery when SweetWater, specializing in unpasteurized beers, opened in Atlanta.

  • 1998

    - Price of a 16-oz beer: $0.86
    - Inflation-adjusted price: $1.36 (#68 most expensive in last 68 years)
    - Number of U.S. breweries: 1,514
    - U.S. beer production: 198.1 million barrels (-0.4% change from previous year)

    Of the 1,514 breweries operating in America in 1998, over 1,000 were brewpubs, which were illegal just 20 years prior. An additional 420 were classified as microbreweries, a designation that didn’t exist 20 years before.

  • 1999

    - Price of a 16-oz beer: $0.88
    - Inflation-adjusted price: $1.36 (#67 most expensive in last 68 years)
    - Number of U.S. breweries: 1,564
    - U.S. beer production: 198.3 million barrels (+0.1% change from previous year)

    In 1999 Montana allowed breweries to conduct on-site beer sales. Craft breweries began opening tap rooms weeks later.

  • 2000

    - Price of a 16-oz beer: $0.92
    - Inflation-adjusted price: $1.38 (#64 most expensive in last 68 years)
    - Number of U.S. breweries: 1,566
    - U.S. beer production: 199.2 million barrels (+0.5% change from previous year)

    At the beginning of the new millennium, there were officially more breweries operating in the U.S. than in any other country. All those fermentation tanks churned out a record 200 million barrels of beer.

  • 2001

    - Price of a 16-oz beer: $0.96
    - Inflation-adjusted price: $1.40 (#58 most expensive in last 68 years)
    - Number of U.S. breweries: 1,545
    - U.S. beer production: 199.3 million barrels (+0.1% change from previous year)

    In 2001 craft beer sales in America surpassed $3 billion for the first time. Leading the way were top-three producers Boston Beer Co., Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., and Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing. Anheuser-Busch began testing a low-carb light beer called Michelob Ultra.

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