A Beer By Any Other Name?

So as a beer *insert geek/nerd/nut/enthusiast* we sometimes develop specific feelings toward different brands and breweries. This is the case when it’s a small time, local, intimate, talk directly with the brewer/owner deal all the way up to a monolith “craft beer” giant as Samuel Adams. We love supporting the “little guy”, tasting the stuff that is rare and that people want to drive hours to get. So sometimes, just sometimes, we get pulled into brands which aren’t so, well, let’s call them pure. Sure, perhaps they used to be our favorite small time nano,  but now, they’ve bought by some behemoth who mocks their very smallness that got them bought in the first place, in a Super Bowl Ad, as we discussed almost a year ago. The question is, do you still support them? Are you still “allowed” to enjoy the beer they produce?

My brother once told me that I was a beer “snob”. And I immediately said thank you, I’ve had one Coors Classic before. And then he proceed to tell me why. He was convinced that I hadn’t tried all beers, that I wasn’t well rounded, that I only went for the ones I knew tasted good or that were from high quality craft breweries. I had to deal with the honesty of that moment. I did, kinda. I really only chose beer that I knew was good. But, if your spending your hard earned cash, wouldn’t you want the best? This discussion, though, helped me to form a healthier idea of what I could, or should, be picking up at one of the local Beer stores.

C153ase in point, I don’t normally buy beer from a company with a Goose or Moon on the label, because I know who owns them. And for other reasons I don’t normally buy beer with a Patriot on the label. And the list continues. I’m not saying that they don’t make some solid beers. I’m saying that a stigma has been created in my mind, and likely others. I’m saying we need to remove our brain and think with our taste buds.

With that in mind, err mouth, I decided to take a plunge on a beer named “Cinnamon Horchata Ale” by Blue Moon Brewing. To say I was skeptical was an understatement. I haven’t had a Blue Moon beer since I first started my journey as a Beer Geek. It’s one of the beers that was transitional for me as really a very, very light beer drinker. Like, once in a Blue Moon light. Yes, I went there. Anyways, this beer had also intrigued me along with the Spiced Chai, because my beautiful wife doesn’t like beer much at all. Don’t get me wrong I wanted to try something new. But I also needed something she would possibly enjoy, she loves Chai and tea’s in general. So I figured I’d shoot two birds with one stone, try something new without obligation and see if my wife would enjoy a beer with me! Would my mind tell me “MillerCoors = Bad”?

I had high hopes, for her more than for me. Remembering, as I poured a frothy, light golden yellow brew into a mug, grinning with excitement, that the Blue Moon Belgian White was one my gateway beers. Now I could finally share that. I handed her the brew, she sniffed it, said it smelled of Apple Cider. That’s good! She gave it a little taste, and then silence. She gave a even bigger gulp. The smile that ensued from that lady’s face will be forever etched in my mind. And, that my friends, is a slam dunk!

As much as I would have liked to have won her over with some highly prized craft brew, I didn’t care. She drank a good deal of it and let me have the rest. I was reluctant, to be honest. I don’t like Chai tea’s or cinnamon in my drinks. But, I thoroughly enjoyed it! Almost a graham cracker cinnamon that was just right. The flavors jumped around just right on my palate and had enough residual sweetness without being cloying.

In the end, my fellow beer drinkers, it’s the taste buds that won. I enjoyed a beer that didn’t break my wallet in half. And I was able to share a wonderful experience with my wife. Really, isn’t that what beer should be about, sharing and experiencing something with those you love? All because Blue Moon created this wonderful little beer and I let my mouth decide.

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