Sunday, 7 June 2009

Ode to Choosing The Next Beer

I’m at home. It’s the morning. I want a beer for tonight. I need to hurry or I’ll be late for work. What beer? I know, I’ll have that one. No wait, I’m saving that one. Right… this one. Oh yes, this is the one. I’ve wanted to open this one for ages. Oh. Actually… that could get better if I leave it. Maybe I should leave it a little while longer? Put it towards the back of the cupboard. What else have we got? Those are all no-gos. And those are untouchable too: don’t even think about it! We’ll have them next year. Something to look forward to. A promise of a great beer, a great night. Half the excitement is in the waiting. I like that part. It’s the choosing that is hard. What do I fancy? There are no hoppy beers. I want hops. There’s loads of stout. I don’t want stout tonight. What’s in the fridge already? I could just have one of them… Nah, I don’t fancy any of them. I’ll sit here staring into the cupboard and something will jump out at me. In a moment of inspiring care-free impetuousness I pull out a hidden secret. I hold it, I run my fingers over the label, I can taste it already, the bottle is cool to touch, I feel the graze of the crown, I read the name, it fills me with a profound joy, a huge expectation, I want this beer, I put it back. That beer is too special. I’ll wait. What do I want now? What’s for dinner? What am I doing tonight? What beer fits? Beer for an occasion. Beer to suit a mood. Beer to compliment life. What film will I watch? What beer will go with that film? Maybe I should open a stout. There’s that one or that one? No, not that one, it’s my last bottle, once it’s gone it’s gone. Check the fridge again. What’s the time? Oh crap, I’m late for work now. Right, just choose one. This one? I might not want that later? I could put three or four in the fridge but that just seems too revolutionary. Maybe I’ll stop by the shops and pick up something new? I think I need more beer to choose from.

I’ve written about my beer-hoarding problem before. You can find it here.

12 comments:

  1. I don't seem to have too much of a beer hoarding problem. I'm pretty impatient, if I have something I want, I'll drink it! That said there are a few bottles of red wine in my cellar that aren't to be toughed for another couple of years yet!

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  2. Buy two cases of beer; one hoppy, one darker. Drink as/when you like. Then cracking open those rare/interesting bottles won't seem like such a wrench.

    Or just peel all the labels off and then you'll end up with truely random beer.

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  3. Haddonsman, there is a certain romance in taking the labels off all of my beers and then just going in blind every time. I don't know if I could quite bring myself to it tho!!

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  4. The blind tasting is certainly a good idea. It has two flaws as far as I can see though. How would you know what tempeature to serve the beer at, and you would have to tippex out any markings on the crown cap!

    I meant to say earlier Mark, a nicely written post. Been reading Hemmingway again? Your sentance structure suggests so!

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  5. Pete, you raise good points - the cap will give off too many clues to the contents, but then some bottles are very distinctive!

    And I haven't read Hemingway in ages, it just seems that this is how I like to write naturally. I'm clearly a lazy sentence writer :)

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  6. Haha! It's like you are in my brain! Beer obsession and depression-era childhood hoarders for parents. At least that's my excuse. It maddens Mr. Malting so much he just puts several at random in the fridge and will poor them--without my consent!!! Just to stop me agonizing about it all. Which is maybe why I haven't done any tasting note postings in a while.

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  7. Get a 40-pint bucket. Empty beers into said bucket. Swirl about a bit. Congratulations - no more beer woe, you have just the one blended beer.

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  8. You've inspired me to open my solitary bottle of Beer Geek's Breakfast tonight, hoarded since last September.

    Thank you!

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  9. Yes, get that Mikkeller open!! Woo!

    How would people feel about a campaign to open those hoarded beers? Maybe the first weekend in April and October? We just go nuts and open a beer we have stashed away? I might try and work on this ready for October (I figure October and April are good because these are when the seasons change).

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  10. I know this feeling. We've been on a mission the past couple of days to stock up on good drinkers that aren't in any way "special" - we haven't been drinking that much at home recently, but you don't want to waste something you've been saving on a quick-i've-had-a-sh*t-day-at-work pickmeup.

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