Saturday, 30 January 2010


I approve of alcohol. Beer was a major step forward in human civilisation.

What I disapprove of is the mass production and mass consumption of poor-quality alcohol.

Ale, made with care and natural ingredients, is an art form.

The simple melding of hops, malt, water and yeast produces beers as diverse in nature as humanity itself. Dark, bitter, light, hoppy. Beers to quaff, beers to sip and savour.

A true beer, an ale with soul and character is a Maker's drink. As much black art as science, a decent beer is a genuine pleasure to drink, as much for the aroma, flavour, and even the feel in the mouth.

Mass produced beers, though, chemical-raddled lagers, over-chilled, carbonated "smooth" beers, are poison to the palette, sins against the sacred hop.

Proper beers are not intended to get you drunk (although they can - I've had a couple of very nice beers at 10% or more). You drink a bottle or two, savour it, and have a very pleasant evening. You try new beers from trusted brewers, or recommended by a friend with a discerning palette. Their flavours and nuances can be compared and discussed.

The dross, though. The ice-cold lagers, the alcopops, the two-for-one shots are not there to be enjoyed for their own sake. They are churned out, cheaply, by the bucket-load. No care, no soul, just lab-coats and QC technicians. As soon as alcohol is taxed according to the %vol, rather than by the type, the sooner we can be rid of the foul corporate crud doled out in mass-market off-licenses and burger-pub-chains.

They are there just to get people drunk, people without the imagination to look beyond "get bladdered and fall down" as a form of entertainment. I know, I've been there.

Manufactured without art, drunk without skill.

Yes, I am a beer snob.


  1. >giggles< Yes, you are...but I'll take beer snob over some people I know any day. It's a very forgivable fault. ;)

  2. I appreciate a man who appreciates a good beer and one who appreciates ale even more so. Don't believe what you might read, I'm currently and slowly drinking through a Harpoon Ale mixed 12 pack. Cheers!