A new website dedicated to craft beer aims to make it easier for beer drinkers to find their favourite beers:
BreweryFans.com was created to make it extremely easy for beer fans to find where individual beer brands are available from their favorite breweries. We work with distributors and our client breweries to put their distribution data online while also allowing any fan or retailer to post beer lists for others to interact with on a Google map or filterable list.
Each brewery has been setup with its own Fan Page on the website which not only shows the beers they produce, but also pulls in their social media information such as recent twitter updates, YouTube videos and photos from Flickr. After creating an account on the website, you can become a Fan of a brewery and then indicate which of theirs beers you've tried and rate them. You can also then add locations where a particular beer is being served and if a brewery or one of their beers is not currently available in your area, you can sign up for Email Alerts and be notified when it is. If a brewery chooses to work with the website, it will receive information entered by the fans, including the email alert requests which could potentially be a good indicator of demand for a product in a particular area.
I've used other sites over the years that have similar functionality and the main issue has always been that they rely on user interaction to keep the information up-to-date. That can work for a while, but the novelty eventually wears off and users stop updating information as frequently or entirely. Hopefully BrewerFans.com can avoid that by offering to work with the breweries and distributors directly to ensure the information regarding their products, including availability data, is accurate and up-to-date. Breweries located in Texas are not allowed to provide a list of locations that sell their beer and this site could be a great way for them to provide that information to their customers. The website hasn't been operating for very long so it has limited information available but that should increase as more breweries and beer fans sign up.