In addition to my weekly features (Regional Highlight, Brew of the Week, Community Submission and other failed ideas) I am also going to write one or two “feature editorial” a month about beer and the beer lifestyle.
For my inaugural editorial I wanted to focus on something that I’ve noticed throughout the years: different type of beer drinkers. There are way too many types of booze drinkers; there is the martini girl, the wine plonk guy, and the obscure cocktail dude (“I’ll have a One-Balled Dictator, please”.). With the hundreds of different alcohols out there and the thousands of brands and varietals I could write a 10,000 word blog post about each type of drinker. But instead, today I will solely focus on beer. And trust me, it was hard to try to keep this list at only ten.
1. Beer Snobs – Beer snobs, like wine snobs, are the elitist of the beer drinking community. They scoff at your offering of Miller Lite and Dos Equis, “How dare you offer (free) beer that is produced at such a large quantity and with such little taste?” They consider drinking Samuel Adams products as “slumming it” and a last resort. You can often see them scrutinizing bartenders over their lack of cask beer selection and for pouring their IPA in a pint glass instead of a snifter.
2. College Students / Young Adults – These brand of drinkers fund their beer supplies by finding change in the sofa cushions and using their parent’s “emergency credit card” at liquor stores disguised as supermarkets. Quantity is more important than quality; their philosophy: why buy a twelve pack of Coors Light when they can buy a 30 pack of Keystone Light? They also use catchy nicknames for the beer they buy like 30 Rack of Stones and Milwaukee’s Beast. They are less concerned about what types of hops were used and how easy it is to play Beirut with.
3. Beer Dorks – Beer Dorks are walking encyclopedias of beer knowledge; they are not to be confused with Beer Snobs. They are a nonthreatening breed that will drink just about any style or brand of beer, but then will talk about what they are drinking for the next fifteen minutes. They treat a pint of IPA like a 1982 French Bordeaux. Beer dorks will use words like tannins, aroma, and mouth-feel; all things you never thought related to beer. They are often seen milling around craft beer stores for hours and their wallets have more beer-club membership cards than credit cards. A typical conversation with a beer dork may go as follows: http://youtu.be/hZbE8ebQdwE
4. Home Brewers – I like to consider home brewers as the “bees of beer”, without them a lot of the amazing beer in the market wouldn’t exist without them – you know, because beers pollinate flowers that grow fruit and vegetables that turn into food (ok, bad analogy, I know). Ok, better analogy: home brewers are the do-it-yourselfers of the beer drinking community. They don’t sit around and pout if they can’t get Fat Tire in their state; they brew it themselves. They have books, equipment, and their house always smells like grains. And what is the one thing they like more than brewing and drinking their own beer? Sharing their own beer! You ask them to bring some beer over for the big game and they bring 64 ounces of their homemade brew, barely enough for three people. And they stare at you while you choke down every ounce of that skanky beer, waiting patiently for praise of their suds, giving them hope that one day they can quit their job and open up a microbrewery of their own. (Huh, this sounds familiar)
5. Clueless – Clueless beer drinkers are the type that you just want to pat on the head and comfort them because they have seriously no clue as to what they are doing or talking about. They are generally out of their element when it comes to beer drinking and could use a little push in the right direction. One of the easiest ways to spot one is if they are drinking a Guinness before it has completely settled (how to drink a Guinness). Common situations may involve the clueless consumer ordering a “fun sounding beer” like Arrogant Bastard to only realize that it is a very aggressive beer that might only be enjoyed by a small sample size. Instead of being ridiculed this harmless group needs to be nurtured and learned about the ways of the brew. Or at least stay close to them because free beer might be had.
6. Hipsters – The only thing less mainstream than the clothes they wear and the music they listen to is the beer that Hipsters drink. 85% of the time you will probably see a Pabst Blue Ribbon in the hands of a hipster, most likely at a music venue you’ve never been to, listening to a band you’ve never heard of. The other 15% of the beer they drink are made from breweries that are completely organic and value their carbon footprint over the taste profiles of their own product (editors note: The Brews support green, organic living; just within reason).
7. Farvas – “Open bar, dude!” 95% of the beer drinking public like open bars; the other 5% LIVE for open bars. Named after the zany character in the movie, Super Troopers, Farvas don’t see weddings as an invitation to celebrate the love of two people, they see it as an invitation to drink their face off! For FREE! It doesn’t matter what kind of beer is behind the bar as long as that beverage hits their lips without taking a hit to their wallets. At beer tastings, they don’t care if the IPA was doubled hopped; all they care about is getting a double sample.
8. Rednecks – “You know, before this, I always drank out of a can. I never knew beer was yellow.” Lucky, King of the Hill (voiced by rocker Tom Petty). I know it would be pretty ignorant of me to say that all rednecks are like that, but someone prove me wrong! I do know that the one thing rednecks love more than America and beer is American beer. And there is only one way to drink beer as a redneck, in tallboys surrounded by NASCAR beer koozies.
9. Yeah-Dudes! (aka Brahs!) – The only thing they want to crush more than girls is crushing Coors Lights with their bros! Bud Light isn’t a sign of a good time, it is the brick and mortar of guy’s night out. When they go over to their buddy’s place to watch the game there is only one thing on their mind: Drinkability. These guys often travel and drink in groups; they’ll jump on a grenade for a buddy and take a Silver Bullet for another. Once the clock hits 5:00 PM it is Miller Time.
10. Yuppies – I can’t point out Hipsters if I am not going to point their arch nemesis, The Yuppie. They are still young enough to have people for “pre-game”, but instead of hosting case races they having people over for craft beer and cheese parties. They are often spotted at high-end taverns drinking Stella Artois out of their signature glass.