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“Fancy” Beer for Simple Folk

A friend linked me to this article on askmen.com.   It reads like The Onion, and the tone is full of pretension that the author is trying to attribute to craft beer, but it’s presumably a serious post.  The author misses the days when beer was simple, bland, and cold.  He yearns for the days of simple working class people getting together over a couple of beers, and simply drinking them.  It amuses me that he goes on and on about working class beer but goes out of his way to use ‘fancy’ words like emetics, gullet and twee.

 

It’s an okay sentiment, if one I don’t agree with, to enjoy, even prefer, a beverage that is quaffable,  a cheap hobby, and gets you to that tipsy and relaxed state that many people enjoy whether from beer, wine, or cocktail.   What’s not okay is to suggest that his preference is both the real way to enjoy beer, and that it’s secretly what I want as well.  The idea that craft beer drinkers are hipsters drinking the beer solely to make a statement and stand out is not a new one, but it’s been steadily disproven with the growing market of not only craft beer, but of homebrewing.  There are lots of people out there making strange tasting beers in their own basements and consuming them themselves with no regard to what’s popular or trendy.  Many people have different taste buds, and enjoy the different tastes beer offers beyond a vaguely malty cold beverage.  One of the great things about beer is how many different types there are.

 

The writer of this article, one Patrick Smith, makes himself out to be the archetypal character in a marketing commercial.  He admits to being influenced by beer commercials well before being of legal age, he repeats the common marketed point of beer being better as cold as possible,and  he recites commercial taglines and insinuates that he believes them that it makes him cool to drink those beers.   Personally I think he’s stuck in a 1970s view of what’s manly.  I think, and maybe we’re not all keen with the labels in today’s society,  the typical manly man in today’s world is different than it was then, and they drink craft beer, but that’s a discussion that deserves it’s own post.

 

The more I think about it, what Mr. Smith is really missing is a time when he could be a “functional alcoholic” and be praised as a man for it.  Luckily we’ve progressed to a point where we recognize the desire to drink heavily after work, at ballgames, as a child, or at every gathering of men as symptoms of alcoholism.

 

March 16th, 2012 by Ceetar in Beer, Breweries, Uncategorized
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Session Beers the new Craze? Brewing a Blonde

It seems session beers are becoming the newest craze in craft/home brewing.  Beers low in alcohol and less intense than imperial oatmeal stouts aged in alcohol barrels provide the ability to sit and enjoy a couple of beers without them hitting you like a ton of bricks.

 

My last beer was the tasty, but still toasty and dark, MADhouse Coco-Nutz.  So this time I’m going light, and making a Mexican Blonde.  it’ll be a simple blonde ale with blue agave syrup and Mt. Hood hops. It should be ready just in time for baseball season.

January 23rd, 2012 by Ceetar in baseball, Beer
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The Final Frontier Of Beer: Catering Halls

Beer has definitely arrived.   Whether you call it micro, craft or something else, you can often find more than just Budweiser and Coors when you go out just about anywhere you’d expect to find alcohol.  The one place where you almost never have any variety at all is in a catering hall.

 

I’ve been to a lot of weddings in the last couple of years, and excepting ones that weren’t in catering halls, the beer selection is non-existent.   Most cases even the hard alcohol isn’t very extensive; I’ve been to places that don’t even have tequila.  Beer is often just Budweiser, Bud Light, and/or Coors light.   A catering hall’s idea of a broad selection is having bottles of Corona and Heineken.  I consider it a coup when I find a place that has something as exotic as Sam Adams Boston Lager.

 

It’s like the halls give no thought at all to providing quality beverages for their guests.  This isn’t exclusive to beer, as you often find catering halls serve generic uninteresting food as well.   Perhaps because most of their customers are things like weddings and parties that aren’t often repeat business, they’re not as focused on providing an overall awesome experience.  Maybe it’s because many times the customers are there to party, dance and celebrate, not to eat and drink.  Or maybe we’ve been so trained to not expect a great meal or a good beer that we no longer demand it.

November 17th, 2011 by Ceetar in Beer, Uncategorized
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Spotting Craft Beer in TV and Movies

I get a kick out of spotting specific craft beers (And non craft beers) in movies and television shows even though they often try to not to specifically focus on the beer label.

 

Sometimes you can even identify the city early by the beer.  This happened in the movie “He’s Just Not That Into You”.  An early scene features two people in a supermarket, and one of them is purchasing a six-pack of Clipper City and I knew it was set in Baltimore.

 

Most recently I spotted Shiner Bock, a famous Texas craft beer, on an episode of True Blood. (In Shreveport, LA)  Alcide drank it with the pack leader Marcus.

 

I have no idea what prompts the producers to use these beers.  Perhaps someone on set is a beer lover and they reuse the empty bottles for the show.  Maybe they’re looking for something with a little local flair and think it makes a fun prop and they want the character to be a craft beer drinker.   Perhaps they’re just annoyed Budweiser turned them down for a sponsorship.

 

Whatever the reason, whenever I see a different beer can or bottle on my television or in a movie I try to identify it.  It’s a fun little game to play, although you shouldn’t forget to pay attention to what the characters are doing.  I’ve had to rewind a show many times because of that.

August 25th, 2011 by Ceetar in Beer, Television and Movies
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