Hey everyone, just passing on a press release though I'm sure most beer fans out there have probably already heard the news... Abita is going to start canning several of their flagship beers, including Amber, Jockamo IPA, and Purple Haze. They are expected to be on shelves in early 2012, and will be offered in addition to glass bottles and draft. Here is a link to the full press release for anyone interested!
As for my thoughts on this... canning is a craft beer trend that is gaining a lot of steam nationwide. I think canning makes a lot of sense in Louisiana where there are plenty of events that forbid glass bottles, like Mardi Gras, tailgating, and other outdoor events. In addition to this news from Abita I know that NOLA Brewing and Tin Roof Brewing both previously decided to skip the bottling line and go straight to canning their beer. (I know NOLA did the Irish Channel Stout in bottles, but that was a very small scale bottling and wasn't done with a full-scale commercial line.) Honestly I'm surprised it took Abita this long to jump on board with the trend.
As far as canned craft beer is concerned, glassware is still the key to a proper taste and proper review. It's impossible to pick up the colors of a beer and very difficult to pick up any aroma when drinking straight from the can. The problems with aluminum flavors are largely gone now, and cans do provide a great light-free package that helps maintain the beers' integrity, but it doesn't do beer any justice if you're drinking it straight. That being said, if I can bring a 12-pack of Abita or Tin Roof or NOLA on a canoe trip with me instead of a BMC product, you bet your ass I'll bring one of the local guys.