We make holes in teeth!

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Rate Beer

Most everything I do these days involves taking a decent idea and bringing it to a level beyond casual enjoyment. To that end, my recent forays into beer drinking is another example of exactly one of those items. Having been nicknamed for one of the fattest drunks in the history of television (Norm, Cheers), you might imagine I would have a handle on good versus bad beer. While I can surely tell the difference between Bud and Sam Adams, my taste buds beyond that aren't so refined.

Recently I've taken to trying to find more beer and wine that fits my level of taste. Surprisingly, wine has been easy. There are 2 key elements to wine for me. Red is good in the winter, white in the summer. The second is that the guys at the liquor store are well versed in wine and enjoy many of the same wines I do. Thus, the vast arrays of wines become much easier to manage with their direction.

Not so with beer. I assumed I would be able to find any number of beer sites on the Internet, but this optimism was soon quelled by reality. The first site I found was As you might imagine, my initial thought was that this would be an excellent resource for someone like me. I have a decent range of beer experience, but I still need a lot of work. If this site could illustrate how I can fairly taste the difference between a Pilsner and a Pale Ale, it might help in my going forward in future beer endeavors.

I started by clicking the link "View the top beers." This was an exercise in futility, as I recognized only Dogfish Head on the list of the top 50 beers. Could it really be the case that of the top 50 rated beers on this website, I had drank none and only heard of 1? How absurd.

I then clicked on the "Top 50 Accessible Beers" link and was relieved to find that my recognition rate rose to a more appreciable 50%. Of course, I still fail to see how the top rated Ayinger Celebrator Doppelbock is accessible to me. Same goes for #2, the well known North Coast Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout - apparently well known on the North Coast of...somewhere. Around #9 I start to chime in, with a Sierra Christmas brew. After that, I've had just about everything on the list of 19 - a far cry from the 50 suggested by the link name.

Aside from this, the site sucked for me. I was looking for a site to help me with beer basics. Some of the people on this site have rated more beers than I will ever drink in my lifetime. Am I missing the point, or are they? I'm looking for a few select beers to enjoy, maybe picking up a few here and there along the way I might not ordinarily have tried. Some of these people rate 14 beers in one night. I don't know about you, but after just a few my tastes buds make an exit stage left and have little remaining for tasting new beers.

Instead, this is another of the numerous Internet web sites which have so much potential but deteriorate into the common cock fight nature of men who need to assert their anonymous male domination over other men they do not have to actually meet. Their imaginary cock length is based on the number of beers they drink & rate - the more arcane the better. For those of us who imagine a 4 pack of Sam Smith is about as high class as it gets, I guess we'll never be accepted into their world. Oh well, I suppose I'll have to live with my mediocre beer world until I find a better reference site out there. If you have any suggestions, I'm all ears.


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