The Anatomy of a Beer

September 8, 2010

Beer is more than just a pale colored beverage in a glass. It can display a wide and vast range of colors, flavors, aromas and textures. Especially among craft beers, you would be hard pressed to find two beers whose construction came out to yield the exact same beer. All the different variables and procedures that go into crafting a beer make each one unique and special.

Understanding a beer’s anatomy can help you better define its structure, and how its flavors will affect you. See below for a full breakdown of a beer’s final construction and how it affects the flavor and experience you enjoy. Read the rest of this entry »

How Do You Say That? Goooo-den Carol-us?…

August 18, 2010

Slowly but surely the range and variety of amazing beers from the other side of the world are making their way both into the American and Canadian beer market. Finally! The world of German, French, Belgian, British and Italian beers are greatly under represented in North America, especially in Canada. The United States is actually doing a fine job at importing some of the best beers that this planet has to offer – but what still gets people everywhere is how to properly pronounce them.

People still call Hoegaarden ho-garden. Ummm not quite fellas. It is properly pronounced whoo-gaar-den with a very soft “d”. Its hard to blame anyone, because we are rarely exposed to the proper pronunciation, but for those who want to know, has an excellent resource for exactly this purpose! Their interactive speech guide will take you through the proper pronunciation of many of the most commonly misrepresented beers.

Is Beer Temperature Really Important? How does it affect my beer drinking experience?

August 18, 2010

What does an IPA served at 54F, a Belgian dubbel at 57F, a Milk Stout at 48F, and a Wit at 39F all have in common? They were all served at the correct temperature! Ok, I know that was not the best joke, but it really wasn’t intended to make you laugh, but rather to think about your beer’s temperature.

Like pretty much any other beverage, all beers have a preferred serving temperature based on their style, purpose, ingredients and mouthfeel, among other things. This is because every beer is designed to accomplish something very specific, and that specific quality can be enhanced or ruined depending on the temperature at which you drink it.

So lets examine how temperature can affect your beer, and why it is really such a big deal. Read the rest of this entry »

Beer Serving Temperature Guide

August 16, 2010

We learned yesterday that the marketing campaigns we see every day which conjure up fantasies about ice cold beer are not designed to enhance your beer drinking experience, but rather to increase the big guys wallets. But the question still remains; what temperature should I enjoy my delicious beer at to best absorb the flavors that it has to offer?

It can be difficult to know what temperature you should enjoy your beer at, and it is not as cut and dry as determining if your beer has a little or a lot of flavor. The intensity of the beers flavor is but one of many characteristics that should be taken into consideration when picking the proper temperature for your beer.

It should be noted though that serving temperature is merely a guideline; everyone has their own specific preferences as to how they like to enjoy their beers, and there is no real right or wrong. Read the rest of this entry »

Please Don’t Drink Light Beer to Loose Weight, Look to Real Beer!

August 12, 2010

Really? Are you willingly going to choose to drink Bud Light, Coors Light, Molson 67 or any of the other low-cal commodity beers? I know their claim of low calories and light body is alluring to you, but what about their lack of aroma, flavor and character? Surely that should play a role. Are calories really the be all and end all of your beer decision?

But we are a more educated society than that now, and we realize (or should realize) that some calories are made different than others. Yes, some are good, and some are bad, or at least worse than others. This should be your primary focus when considering the calories that you ingest. Yes quantity is important, but the type of calorie is much more vital to your health, and how your body utilizes them. Read the rest of this entry »

How to Pair Beer and Cigars Perfectly (Part 4, the pair)

July 29, 2010

Its a warm Thursday evening after a long day at work, and the sun is just beginning to crest below the horizon. All you want to do is kick back and enjoy the smooth, relaxing, and calming sensations of a good cigar. You have plenty of cigars to choose from, but you’ll probably go for one of your old favorites. Your patio chair is ready, the weather is right, and all you are missing is the appropriate beverage to match your cigar.

A spirit is the typical pair, but you’re feeling rather saucy tonight, and you don’t want the potency of a 40% whisky. So you open your fridge and look to your beer selection. Yes, there are a huge range of beers that will perfectly match a cigar for you. In Part 1 we over viewed the primary characteristics of a cigar that influence its flavor. In Part 2 we examined beers that work well with long or short cigars. In Part 3 we looked at larger ring gauge and earthy cigars. Now to complete the gamut we will enter the world of complex and milder cigars. Read the rest of this entry »

Book Review: 1001 Beers You Must Taste Before You Die

July 28, 2010

With the massive array of choices available to beer lovers today it can even become overwhelming when stepping into your local beer or liquor store trying to narrow down your choices or determine which beers may be best. I know its an awesome dilemma, but there are plenty of resources to help us!

1001 Beers You Must Try Before You Die is a relatively new book that describes it title. This 4 pound, 960 page beer haven book has contributions from over 40 authors and covers a huge range of beers from around the globe. In the world of beer books there are technical brewing , casual enjoyment , historical, philosophical, biographical books and more. But I do love books like this – books that just describe amazing beer. There is no flow or design necessary, no introduction or conclusion. Just amazing beer after amazing beer. Read the rest of this entry »