The craft brewery industry is filled with many different varieties of beers, enough to overwhelm any newbie to the scene. As such, if it’s your first time involving yourself with this new world of beers, you might do well to keep in mind the following advices to make sure you enjoy yourself!
1. The Dos
• Do take your time tasting – take your time to find the delicious brews for you. Don’t take a single sip, but two or three. The first sip is not enough to grasp the full taste of the beer, and neither is the second. Also, don’t be afraid to write down memos and notes to keep track of which beers you like best – otherwise, you’ll find yourself forget with all the names and recommendations thrown at you in the pub.
• Do be aware of the ABV – keep a careful eye on the alcohol percentage! Unlike your average mass produced beers, craft beer can have alcohol percentages of even thirty or forty percent!
• Do make your way from lighter to stronger – when you’re tasting beers, make sure to go in ascending order ABV-wise: start from the lighter drinks and make your way gradually to the strongest ones. This will ensure you will enjoy the subtle flavours of the lighter beers.
• Do use the correct glassware – another important point when drinking beer is to pay attention to the glassware. Depending on the glass, the surface area in contact with the air and similar factors change – and these can significantly affect the taste of the beer.
2. The Don’ts
• Don’t expose beers to sunlight – a fatal mistake to do when it comes to beers is to expose the drink to the sunlight. Sunlight can cause the beer to turn sulphurous – this is why many brewer companies use brown bottles or similar opaque containers.
• Don’t warm or overcool them – beers are best served slightly chilled. When at room temperature or even warmer, beers can lose their freshness relatively fast, whereas when overly chilled, your tongue won’t be able to pick up on the tastes (because it will be numbed instead!)
• Don’t drink without eating first – if you drink on an empty stomach, you’ll find yourself tipsy just after the first glass. Make sure to eat something properly so that your metabolism will be able to process the alcohol: you’ll see that you will be able to drink a glass or two more when you drink after you’ve eaten.
• Don’t wear perfumes – perfumes or any other strong odours can camouflage the subtle aromas of the beer, especially the lighter beers. As such, make sure to not wear any perfumes or be in any room with any strong odours when tasting beers.