Confessions of a beer snob

Ok, I admit it: I despise most Domestic beer, but I love American micro-brewed beers.  I wasn’t always like this. I grew up on PBR and Miller and Coors and Bud. There was a time that I thought they were great!  I frankly don’t remember my first micro-brewed beer. But it may have been in 1990 when I visited San Francisco.  I do remember that is when I had my first Sierra Nevada Pale Ale.  I fell in love.

I didn’t set out to be a beer snob.  We had a local beer and wine shop that sold nearly every variety of micro-brews known to man back when micro-brews were not popular. I went from Wicked Pete’s, Samuel Adams, and Anchor Steam and most of the more mainstream micro brews to the exotics.  I tried Belgium Ale and German and Austrian, Japanese and Australian. Yeah, I even tried some of the beers that add crap other than water, barley, hops and yeast as allowed by good old Reinheitsgebot. I hate additives, too. Limes are for Key Lime Pie and Margueritas, not beer.  And Lite beer? It’s like drinking beer colored water. 

I know micro-brewed beers are more expensive.  I know fancy pants people drink them, and normal red-blooded American guys usually avoid them.  That does trouble me. But what happened was 100s of years ago America was full of “micro-breweries” and we had good, real beer. Then capitalism took over, and commercialism. The big breweries lowered cost and raised advertizing and ran the others out of business, or bought them up.

And instead of a vast variety of good beers, we got tasteless crap that appealed to those who did not like real manly beers. Drinking a Budweiser when you could have a Sierra Nevada is like having a veggie burger when you could have a T-Bone.  Life’s too short to always eat tofu.  Besides, if you buy it by the six pack it doesn’t cost any more than when you order a Miller or Bud at a bar. If you have not tried them, experiment. 

Many places will let you mix and match your own choice in a six-pack. Then, with one purchase you can try six different varieties. No, you won’t like them all. Yes, it will be stronger than you are used to if you are a Miller or Bud fan.  Maybe it will take time. But you will get hooked.  Just don’t go with some of the more obscure domestics that are not widely sold anymore, but are nevertheless still pathetic domestics. If you are going to experiment with micro brews, avoid Yeungling, Rolling Rock, most Canadian beers, Pabst Blue Ribbon, Strohs, Carling Black Label, Becks, Heineken, anything that has been around for more than thirty years. Junk, pure junk. If possible, go to a beer tasting or better yet, go to a micro-brewery and taste some fresh from the tap.  Sorry, had to get this off my chest.

7 responses to “Confessions of a beer snob

  1. Heh…
    The lime was never intended to be squeezed into the beer. Regardless of what most young white guys with a pastel sweater tied around their neck thought.

    The purpose of the lime was simply to keep the flies out of the bottle.

  2. I have great memories of a beer in The Bahamas (Caribe?) and flies everywhere. Thanks, Alton, I never heard that before, but it has the ring of truth!

    p.s. By the way, when I found some Caribe up in the States, I eagerly bought it and took it home, and it tasted like crap. I guess the taste depends in part on what you are doing and who your are drinking it with…

  3. Pingback: Confessions of a beer snob « Smash Mouth Politics

  4. …or so I was told by a bartender in Ciudad Juarez one hot summer day…

    In reality? Who knows. I’ve fallen for stuff before.

    Like you said, though, it does have just enough credibility to actually be true.

  5. The bartender told me that the lime was put there as a convenience. The drinker is supposed to squeeze the lime into the glass like a civilized person……Only tourists were trying to squeeze it into the bottle.

  6. OK. Now there’s two world travelers with authoritative answers to your question.

    Pick one and run with it.

  7. I think I’ll go with option 3. NOTHING but water, barley, yeast and malt…

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