Drinking Beer: A Beginner's Guide
Drinking a beer can be extremely complicated, especially if you find yourself in the presence of snooty, "advanced" and knowledgeable drinkers. With the beer scene in Canada rapidly becoming more pretentious, encounters with “advanced” drinkers are increasingly probable.
If you’re drinking at home alone, pick any clean glass. If you’re ordering at a brewery, request a tulip glass. Then look to your drinking buddies and knowingly state, “The tulip glass helps me pinpoint the more delicate aromas.”
When your beer is served, don’t drink it (duh). Instead, make obvious statements about the colour. Here are a few examples to get you started:
“It’s much more golden than I expected.”
“I’d like to see this hue in a better light”
Continue to refrain from drinking your beer. Instead, you’re going to smell it. There are several techniques but as long as you sniff your glass with confidence in at least 2 different ways, you’ll look like a pro. Try giving the glass a swirl or running it under your nose in the “drive by” fashion.
Next you will want to make statements about what you have smelled in your glass. The more obscurely specific, the better. Again, here are some examples:
“I’m getting notes of freshly cut grass”
“There’s a hint of rubber with just a touch of banana”
“The aroma is subtle but not unlike movie theatre popcorn”
We’re finally ready to taste our beer. Make a big show out of taking your first sip. You can even go as far as closing your eyes. Take in just enough to coat your mouth. Let it hit your lips, gums, teeth, and all around your tongue. When you swallow that sip, keep your mouth closed and exhale through your nose.
Now it’s time to make your statements about what you’ve tasted. Some common flavours are citrus, nuts, toffee, caramel, and coffee. Don’t be afraid to get creative with your tasting notes. Identifying “peppery” or “jammy” flavours will make you the king of the obnoxious drinkers.
Finally, now that you have proven to the table (or perhaps your cat if you’re drinking at home) that you are an expert in all things beer, you can relax and actually enjoy. Continue to drink your beer in whatever fashion feels comfortable.