How did I become a beer nerd? Well, I mean I’ve always been a nerd about other things, so I guess it really shouldn’t be that much of a surprise. However, I hadn’t even consumed any alcohol until I got to college. Once I got there of course I started with basically whatever I could get my hands on, so it was generally crap. Cheap crap.
Once it was a little easier for me to acquire alcohol, I began to expand my horizons. I really never enjoyed light beer, and I will never understand why. I mean it tasted like water and was about just as effective in getting me drunk. Being from Central PA, I ended up drinking a lot of Yuengling and eventually a lot of Lions Head. When traveling abroad or when someone was offering, I’d gladly drink a Guinness, in fact, I really loved Guinness. It had so much more to offer than anything else I knew. Little did I know there was so much MORE out there that I was missing.
To be honest, I’m not sure how it all really happened. A sample pack here. A brewpub there. All of a sudden, I just wanted more. I wanted to try everything, and so I did. Just like other things I really, truly love I jumped in and just kept swimming.
It’s funny how your tastes evolve and change, too. I remember scrunching up my nose the first time I tried Starr Hill’s Northern Lights because I thought it was too hoppy. Now I drink a Palette Wrecker from Green Flash without batting an eyelash. I do love hops and bitter flavors, but I love a well-rounded IPA more than anything. Bell’s Hopslam is my absolute favorite beer because it’s so well constructed and leaves little to the imagination. I certainly don’t discriminate, though. I will rarely turn down a nice try stout or a roasty porter.
My general philosophy in beer is that I will try anything once. You never know when something will amaze you and why miss the opportunity?