America has had a turbulent history with regard to beer. Before the European settlers arrived, Indians already drank fermented beverages with fruit, corn and juices. With the arrival of the colonists the brewing culture in the USA grew enormously. Initially this involved mainly british ales, but once the Americans were introduced to pilsner, this type of beer became increasingly popular. At the same time in San Francisco the Americans brewed their firt unique American beer, which they called Steam Beer. All these developments made the US beer culture increasingly diverse.
But then it all stopped. The reclamation of the early 20th banned the production, transportation and sale of alcoholic beverages. This brought an end to the (legal) brewing in the US. Only a few large breweries that were active in "root beer" and "malt syrup" could survive. Once the reclamation was withdrawn, the beer industry experienced a tremendous growth again. Big boys like Anheuser Bush and Coors largely determined the image, but what makes the US most interesting are its many microbreweries. Since the 70s there has been an enormous growth in the number of local, small-scale breweries throughout the country. This has created a huge variety of personal styles and innovations, which made America a Mecca for beer lovers. Currently, the United States has more than 3,000 breweries, which still grows further each year!