Long time no see fellow beer and food lovers! As you may remember, just over a year ago I made the decision to change my life’s course. I quit my stable, “adult” career and became a beer rep for Cavalier Distributing – a company dedicated to the sale of delicious, craft beer.
(What exactly IS a beer rep you ask? Don’t worry I’ll be diving into that in a future post… )
Before this crazy life decision of mine, I thought I knew a lot about the beer business. It wasn’t until I worked in the belly of the thirsty beer beast that I realized how much I truly didn’t know. The past year has been an education, that is for sure.
I thought you might like a glimpse into my world. Here are three things that I’ve learned about the beer business:
‘What exactly is the difference between stout and porter?’ someone recently asked me. As I opened my mouth to explain, I realized that the answer is not as cut and dry as you might think.
While there are many varieties of so-called ‘dark beer’ such as schwarzbier, Scotch ale, dark American lager etc., the broad categories of stout and porter are probably the most well known. Actually, their histories are so intertwined that honestly I still get confused – what came first? The porter or the stout?
I was chatting recently with my friend Scott at Blank Slate Brewing Company about the differences and asked him how he approaches this topic with people. He responded that first, he likes to take a step back. He explains that as you go up the style chain, beers generally increase in flavor, body, and intensity (though there are some exceptions). If you think about the differences between a blonde ale and pale ale, or amber and brown ale this premise fits the bill. Porter and stout are a similar story, but with a lot more overlap.
Beer is a beautiful thing – A perfect balance of four ingredients: water, malted barley, hops, and yeast. Recently I have been hearing vicious lies circulating about this wonderfully complex and diverse beverage causing people to dismiss entire categories or even colors of beer.
Tragic, I know.
Let’s bust open some of the most common beer myths, why don’t we?