I don’t think I can make it any clearer that I love beer. It has entirely permeated almost every aspect of my life, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I love trying new beers and make it a point to seek out things I haven’t had when shopping for beer and visiting bars. The problem with doing this is a phenomenon I like to call the ‘Holy Grail of Beers’ – that one beer you’ve been searching for and hunting but can’t locate to try.
For me, this became the ever elusive Founder’s KBS. Boasting high reviews on all fronts and for many a coveted beverage, I began pursuing avenues to even get a little taste of its ‘delicious goodness.’ I watched in jealousy as others sipped away on my Untappd, Google+, Facebook, and Twitter feeds. I let heavy sighs escape me as I longed to try this beer myself, reading what seemed like everyone but me enjoying this prized possession.
Then, it came to my area. One of my favorite local spots was going to have the KBS available for a very short time, and I had plans that day. I rearranged my schedule, hustled myself over there, and received my sampler. It was delicious to say the least, but at the same time I found myself let down. This beer had been put on such a pedestal for me by others that I found myself disappointed. It was nowhere near as good as all the world had raved and I found myself wondering how this whole situation even came to be.
Before you all line up with angry pitchforks at my door because I just said I was disappointed by your Holy Grail, KBS, hear me out. Like anything else in life it is easy to be swept up in the emotion of a situation. Take for example, the new movie The Avengers. You see all the reviews on your feeds, you hear people on tv and the radio raving about how great it is, you hear your friends going on and on about ‘dude it’s awesome’ and no you have to see it for yourself. You go to the overly packed theater, pay your $9 or so, and watch the movie only to find that it didn’t live up to the expectations set forth by everyone else. Now, I haven’t seen The Avengers, so this may not even be true, but this is a common scenario in our lives.
This started leading me into another thought – when did enjoying a craft beer go from a fun way to kick back with friends to a battle of epic proportions with egos and bragging rights? I’ve met many people who can sit and show you days worth of pictures of their coveted beauties boasting the most outrageous means of obtaining their…preciousssss…just to say that they have these in their possession. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m sure these beers are delicious and I would love to try them, but begging others to send me things from across the country just so I can tell everyone else that I had it seems a bit ludicrous.
I guess where I’m heading with this rambling is that at the end of the day it’s just beer. I’ve learned better than to put beers on pedestals for fear of ruining what should be an awesome experience. There will always be beers I’m dying to try, and there will always be people wanting to share that they already have, but maybe we should take it for what it is – a drink. Some will seem better than others for different people and that’s just the way it is. Personally, I found that the Curmudgeon’s Better Half is the best thing I’ve tried from Founder’s, but I digress. What I’m trying to say, I think, is that as much as I love beer, cooking with beer, sharing beer with others, and writing about beer, I find it important to maintain that this Holy Grail of sorts isn’t as important as the community as a whole and the experiences that come with it.
What are your thoughts?