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Theme Changer

 Topic: Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide

 (Read 4437 times)
  • 12 3 Next page « Previous thread | Next thread »
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     OP - May 14, 2014, 05:23 PM

    ***IMPORTANT: no matter what you're drinking, please drink safely and be aware of how alcohol may affect you, especially if you are young or new to drinking.***

    I've seen a couple of people now extolling the *cough*virtues*cough* of Budweiser, Coors Light (!?!?) and the like. vomit I can't overstate how distressing it is for me to read those words.

    When people say American beer tastes like piss, those are the beers they're referring to. And they are absolutely right. You are not doing yourself any favors by drinking that nasty swill.

    But I understand. Maybe you don't know any better. Maybe no one bothered to introduce you to real beer. So I'm going to do it for you now.

    Before you can jump into the deep end with a strong craft beer (what probably tastes "gross" to you now), you need to learn to swim. Take your time to adjust your beer palate, and soon you will be enjoying the rich, flavorful world of Good Beer.



    The Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide

    IBU - International Bittering Unit. A rating to indicate how bitter the beer is. 20 to 30 is pretty low and easy to tolerate, while IPAs can get up to 80, 90 and even higher.

    STEP 1: Pilsner
    In my opinion, pilsners are the most similar to the cheap beers you're used to in both flavor and body. Start with a mild, low IBU pils, maybe described as "easy drinking." Try a few and pay attention to the differences and similarities. You'll start to get a feel for which beer characteristics you like. Once you're as comfortable drinking a pils as you are a bud, move on to the next step.

    STEP 2: Hefeweisen
    A hef will give you a similar experience as a pils, but you'll be getting more flavor. Hefs are unfiltered so they look cloudy, and they really give your mouth something to savor. There are a wider variety of flavors in hefs than in pilsners, so try several.

    STEP 3: Wheat, Wit, Oat
    You can try these at the same time you're trying hefs. You'll get a little more intensity, but still  lower IBUs and even some sweetness at times. You'll also be getting even more variety of flavors. Feel free to hang out at steps 2 and 3 as long as you like, because next we'll be upping our game.

    STEP 4: Pale Ale
    Here's where you start really getting into the diverse and delicious world of craft beer. Pales can have a wide range of IBUs, flavors, and everything else. There are a great many to try. Draw on your experiences with beers you've tried so far to find some pales you think you'll like. Stick to lower IBUs at first, but be adventurous too. You might be surprised at how well you can enjoy a pale with an IBU in, say, the 60s. Keep in mind, both bitterness and flavor come from hops, so they often go together very well. Note: While technically pales, IPAs (India Pale Ale) are a different category. We'll get to them later.

    STEP 5: Amber
    An amber is the best of both light and dark beers. You'll notice a heavier mouth feel and very intense flavors. If you love the experience of an amber, you may want to delve into darker beers.

    STEP 6: Brown
    Browns are the next darker step after ambers. Take your time here as you get used to darker beers. If possible, ask for a taste before ordering a pint. Browns can surprise you. If you feel like you're getting in the groove, move on to the dark stuff.

    STEP 7: Porter, Stout
    These are the dark beers. Heavy, often a meal in themselves, and full of rich flavor. Dive in and explore the varieties, or save them for special occasions.

    STEP 8: IPA
    This is what you've been training for. High IBUs, complex hops, and a vast variety to choose from, IPAs are for the ultimate beer lovers. By now your palate should be able to tolerate more bitterness and pick out subtle hops, which means you can enjoy the intense and nuanced flavors of IPAs.

    By now you've hopefully tasted many types of beer and even found a few favorites. Your days of suffering with bud and coors are long gone. There are many, many more varieties of beer than what I've gone over in this guide, but you should have a solid foundation from which to explore, if you haven't started already. Next steps beyond this to really enjoy the world and culture of craft beer:

    - Attend a brew fest! Lots of microbreweries and even home brewers gathered together with all their best stuff for you to sample.
    - Take a brewery tour! See the process of brewing and learn from the masters.
    - Try home brewing! There is nothing as fucking delicious as a fresh home brew straight from your kitchen.

    Enjoy! cheers

    I hear the rains, I see the fire, I feel the flame. It doesn't change the faces I want to blame for the shame I'm feeling.
    But the winds of change will blow again. And we're the lucky ones who travel on towards the sun.

    Can you hear it calling you?
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #1 - May 14, 2014, 06:49 PM

    Great thread!

    Yes!  Please, people, for the love of all things good in the world, DO NOT drink crappy beers like Budweiser, Miller light, etc. Thinking that those "beers" are a good representation of the wonders of a good brew is like thinking that Taco Bell is a representation of fine Mexican cuisine. Just don’t do it.

    Once you begin to appreciate just what sort of wholesome goodness goes into a good craft beer, you will refuse to drink anything else. It is the difference between ground chuck and fillet mignon, between fish sticks and freshly grilled salmon steak—the two things simply don’t belong in the same category.

    Remember: don’t fear the beer.

    Personally, I love the tastes of Ambers, brown ales, stouts and porters. A buddy of mine just gave me two IPA’s he brewed as well which were phenomenal. And while I’ll admit that an IPA might be a bit strong for your first time around, I’m almost tempted to say that you can jump straight in to the deep end, or at least right into step 3 in Luthiel’s flow chart above and start with a good wheat. Grab a good wheat beer and I can practically guarantee that unless you are one of those weird people who hate sunshine, kittens, and vanilla ice cream, you will thoroughly enjoy it. I am a huge fan of Breckenridge Brewery’s Agave Wheat brew. It’s light and refreshing but still full of flavor. Moving on to steps 4, 5, and 6 will only make you happier you were born a human being and not a slug or a koala.

    So tonight on your way back home, stop at a decent grocery store and pick up a good craft beer. Print out Luthiel’s chart above to help guide your decision. Thank her later.

    "God will say, "O Jesus, son of Mary, did you say to the people, 'Make me and my mother gods beside God?" Qur'an 5:116

    "I told them clearly that I am a man...and that they should never make a mistake in assuming or pretending that the human being is emanated from a deity." - Haile Selassie
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #2 - May 14, 2014, 07:07 PM

    Just a quick note to the Brits. Budweiser isn't that bad. Or to clarify, Budweiser in the UK isn't that bad. It's a different brew from US Budweiser. Budweiser in the US is disgusting. Don't drink it. Budweiser in the UK? Give it a go.

    Just remember, if you go to the US don't drink it. You'll spit it out. Afro

    `But I don't want to go among mad people,' Alice remarked.
     `Oh, you can't help that,' said the Cat: `we're all mad here. I'm mad.  You're mad.'
     `How do you know I'm mad?' said Alice.
     `You must be,' said the Cat, `or you wouldn't have come here.'
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #3 - May 14, 2014, 07:13 PM

    I agree step 3 is a good starting point for most, but don't miss out on the hefs! They can be really delicious. Starting at a pils is for life long cheap beer drinkers with no palate at all.

    I sincerely hope people here start trying good beer, with or without my guide. Take happymurtad's advice and pick up a good craft beer at the grocery store on your way home. I'd love to see photos of what you're trying!

    I hear the rains, I see the fire, I feel the flame. It doesn't change the faces I want to blame for the shame I'm feeling.
    But the winds of change will blow again. And we're the lucky ones who travel on towards the sun.

    Can you hear it calling you?
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #4 - May 14, 2014, 07:18 PM

    Budweiser in the UK isn't that bad. It's a different brew from US Budweiser.

    Interesting. I might be tempted to try it if I ever have the chance, but then why would I waste my time and money on a Bud when I can enjoy a delicious microbrew?

    I hear the rains, I see the fire, I feel the flame. It doesn't change the faces I want to blame for the shame I'm feeling.
    But the winds of change will blow again. And we're the lucky ones who travel on towards the sun.

    Can you hear it calling you?
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #5 - May 14, 2014, 07:40 PM

    Up to you of course. I never pass on a good microbrew.

    `But I don't want to go among mad people,' Alice remarked.
     `Oh, you can't help that,' said the Cat: `we're all mad here. I'm mad.  You're mad.'
     `How do you know I'm mad?' said Alice.
     `You must be,' said the Cat, `or you wouldn't have come here.'
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #6 - May 14, 2014, 08:28 PM

    Budweiser here in the states does make a label called Black Crown that is drinkable. Still, crafts are certainly the way to go.

    "God will say, "O Jesus, son of Mary, did you say to the people, 'Make me and my mother gods beside God?" Qur'an 5:116

    "I told them clearly that I am a man...and that they should never make a mistake in assuming or pretending that the human being is emanated from a deity." - Haile Selassie
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #7 - May 14, 2014, 09:03 PM

    Unless your a college/uni student then crap beers like keystone light and coors are the way to go.  cool2

    From what I gather drinking mass marketed crap beer is sort of like a rite of passage and tradition and we only drink proper beers when we become mature adults after graduation.   


    In my opinion a life without curiosity is not a life worth living
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #8 - May 14, 2014, 09:08 PM

    Most IPAs you get served in pubs here in the UK are greatly overrated. Cheap session ales for the most part, although - obviously - microbrewery-type setups are unlikely to fit this description.

    A handy tip for anyone viewing a UK pub cellar: the presence of filter funnels might (I stress, *might*) suggest the recycling of drip trays back into IPA barrels...
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #9 - May 14, 2014, 09:10 PM

    It's always refreshing to see there are people snobbier than I am about their beers. Grin
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #10 - May 14, 2014, 09:11 PM

    Unless your a college/uni student then crap beers like keystone light and coors are the way to go.  cool2

    From what I gather drinking mass marketed crap beer is sort of like a rite of passage and tradition and we only drink proper beers when we become mature adults after graduation.   

    Remember when you asked what the older folks would do differently if they could be 20 again?

    I WOULD DRINK GOOD FUCKING BEER FFS.

    I hear the rains, I see the fire, I feel the flame. It doesn't change the faces I want to blame for the shame I'm feeling.
    But the winds of change will blow again. And we're the lucky ones who travel on towards the sun.

    Can you hear it calling you?
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #11 - May 14, 2014, 09:12 PM

    Just a quick note to the Brits. Budweiser isn't that bad. Or to clarify, Budweiser in the UK isn't that bad. It's a different brew from US Budweiser. Budweiser in the US is disgusting. Don't drink it. Budweiser in the UK? Give it a go.


    Hah, I had no idea. Is it any closer to Budvar than the American variety?
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #12 - May 14, 2014, 09:14 PM

    A handy tip for anyone viewing a UK pub cellar: the presence of filter funnels might (I stress, *might*) suggest the recycling of drip trays back into IPA barrels...

     Shocked questions2 no

    I hear the rains, I see the fire, I feel the flame. It doesn't change the faces I want to blame for the shame I'm feeling.
    But the winds of change will blow again. And we're the lucky ones who travel on towards the sun.

    Can you hear it calling you?
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #13 - May 14, 2014, 09:14 PM

    Remember when you asked what the older folks would do differently if they could be 20 again?

    I WOULD DRINK GOOD FUCKING BEER FFS.


    Can't afford. Argument invalid.  cool2

    how fuck works without shit??


    Let's Play Chess!

    harakaat, friend, RIP
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #14 - May 14, 2014, 09:17 PM

    Maybe I'm lucky to live in an area with such an enthusiastic craft beer culture.

    I hear the rains, I see the fire, I feel the flame. It doesn't change the faces I want to blame for the shame I'm feeling.
    But the winds of change will blow again. And we're the lucky ones who travel on towards the sun.

    Can you hear it calling you?
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #15 - May 14, 2014, 09:20 PM

    To be honest, I think pilsners, and lagers in general, get a bad rap because of their association with "crappy American beers" (which are actually not only American; there are some in Canada as well, eg. Molson). Crappy beers are lagers, but craft lagers have an entirely different taste.

    Also, you say, "Once you're as comfortable drinking a pils as you are a bud, move on to the next step," but I was never "comfortable" drinking any crappy beer. It's absolutely horrid. I can down a good lager or a stout but have to force myself to drink a crappy beer. The first beer I ever drank was a Heineken, and I use "drank" very loosely, because I literally couldn't swallow a single gulp. I cracked the can open, took a sip, and spat it out.

    Also, I think it's not true to say that we're "training" for IPA. I don't like bitterness in my beer. I'm not "training" myself for it.
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #16 - May 14, 2014, 09:20 PM

    Can't afford. Argument invalid.  cool2

    If you can't afford it that's one thing, but don't pretend the cheap stuff is actually good beer.

    I hear the rains, I see the fire, I feel the flame. It doesn't change the faces I want to blame for the shame I'm feeling.
    But the winds of change will blow again. And we're the lucky ones who travel on towards the sun.

    Can you hear it calling you?
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #17 - May 14, 2014, 09:25 PM

    Abood, this guide obviously doesn't apply to you. Smiley

    I hear the rains, I see the fire, I feel the flame. It doesn't change the faces I want to blame for the shame I'm feeling.
    But the winds of change will blow again. And we're the lucky ones who travel on towards the sun.

    Can you hear it calling you?
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #18 - May 14, 2014, 09:40 PM

    Do people actually enjoy crappy beer, though? I get the impression that most people go for them because they're the cheapest, most available, or the only ones they've been exposed to.
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #19 - May 14, 2014, 09:51 PM

    Yes. I personally know someone who would only drink cheap beer. I tried giving him a Fat Tire and he couldn't drink it. I weaned him off cheap beers using basically the guide I posted, and now he loves microbrews.

    I hear the rains, I see the fire, I feel the flame. It doesn't change the faces I want to blame for the shame I'm feeling.
    But the winds of change will blow again. And we're the lucky ones who travel on towards the sun.

    Can you hear it calling you?
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #20 - May 14, 2014, 09:53 PM

    Remember when you asked what the older folks would do differently if they could be 20 again?

    I WOULD DRINK GOOD FUCKING BEER FFS.

      


    ok....ok.  

    *TDR puts down his coors light can and slowly backs away*

     Terror couch

    In my opinion a life without curiosity is not a life worth living
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #21 - May 14, 2014, 09:55 PM

    Good. That stuff is so gross. Even my friend I mentioned above wouldn't touch coors, and certainly not coors light. Grin

    I hear the rains, I see the fire, I feel the flame. It doesn't change the faces I want to blame for the shame I'm feeling.
    But the winds of change will blow again. And we're the lucky ones who travel on towards the sun.

    Can you hear it calling you?
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #22 - May 14, 2014, 10:07 PM

    I tried Coors on a suggestion. It was like drinking diluted piss.

    `But I don't want to go among mad people,' Alice remarked.
     `Oh, you can't help that,' said the Cat: `we're all mad here. I'm mad.  You're mad.'
     `How do you know I'm mad?' said Alice.
     `You must be,' said the Cat, `or you wouldn't have come here.'
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #23 - May 14, 2014, 10:34 PM

    You are actually quite right, Quod. It's actually even more offensive because it's like, "Not only are you serving me piss, you have the audacity to water it down and cheat me out of my share." Grin

    "God will say, "O Jesus, son of Mary, did you say to the people, 'Make me and my mother gods beside God?" Qur'an 5:116

    "I told them clearly that I am a man...and that they should never make a mistake in assuming or pretending that the human being is emanated from a deity." - Haile Selassie
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #24 - May 14, 2014, 10:45 PM

    I’m almost tempted to say that you can jump straight in to the deep end, or at least right into step 3 in Luthiel’s flow chart above and start with a good wheat.

     

    yeah.. um no don't jump into the deep end with the bitter IPAs because you need to work your way up slowly.

    Remember HM your speaking to young murtads who have been drinking coke and pepsi and other extremely sweet sodas their entire lives as tasty drinks.

    There is no way in hell you can give them anything more bitter than a pilsner and expect them to not spit it out on the first sip regardless of how good it is.

    I started off with a pilsner for my first beer and it was pretty good but still took a while to get used to the taste. 

    In my opinion a life without curiosity is not a life worth living
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #25 - May 14, 2014, 10:48 PM

    I have a theory that if you love good black coffee (which I do), you'll love good beer.

    "God will say, "O Jesus, son of Mary, did you say to the people, 'Make me and my mother gods beside God?" Qur'an 5:116

    "I told them clearly that I am a man...and that they should never make a mistake in assuming or pretending that the human being is emanated from a deity." - Haile Selassie
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #26 - May 14, 2014, 10:51 PM

    That's a good theory.

    I hear the rains, I see the fire, I feel the flame. It doesn't change the faces I want to blame for the shame I'm feeling.
    But the winds of change will blow again. And we're the lucky ones who travel on towards the sun.

    Can you hear it calling you?
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #27 - May 14, 2014, 10:54 PM

    It's an acquired taste. But some of life's best things are acquired tastes.

    "God will say, "O Jesus, son of Mary, did you say to the people, 'Make me and my mother gods beside God?" Qur'an 5:116

    "I told them clearly that I am a man...and that they should never make a mistake in assuming or pretending that the human being is emanated from a deity." - Haile Selassie
  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #28 - May 15, 2014, 12:04 AM

    I've tasted a few delightful India Pale Ales recently.



    "we can smell traitors and country haters"


    God is Love.
    Love is Blind. Stevie Wonder is blind. Therefore, Stevie Wonder is God.

  • Craft Beer Beginning Drinker's Guide
     Reply #29 - May 15, 2014, 12:07 AM

    Interesting. I might be tempted to try it if I ever have the chance, but then why would I waste my time and money on a Bud when I can enjoy a delicious microbrew?


    I really don't know what Quod is talking about. I find Budweiser in the UK to taste soapy. Its horrible. Along with Fosters it is an abomination.

    "we can smell traitors and country haters"


    God is Love.
    Love is Blind. Stevie Wonder is blind. Therefore, Stevie Wonder is God.

  • 12 3 Next page « Previous thread | Next thread »