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What matters most about beer is...
on February 25, 2012
In his short essay, "Why Beer Matters," author Evan Rail writes with both fervor and expertise about what beer means to him and why beer matters. He notes the obvious attractions of beer - "the sugar rush of malt, the fragrant flavors of hops, and the elemental calm of alcohol," but he goes a bit deeper into the subject. Inevitably, he compares beer with wine, but the differences go well beyond taste or alcohol content. The finest (and most expensive) wines are old vintages that the average person cannot afford. Beer, on the other hand, is a more democratic drink, being much less expensive, and a drink that the common man can unabashedly discuss and share his opinions with others.
The author points out that beer expresses a strong sense of geography and time, with many beers being brewed and served in only one place and/or during a certain season. The many varieties of beer and the different brewing methods make beer stand out in a world where so many things look and taste the same. Thanks to craft brewing, beer has escaped the sameness that affects so much of what we eat and drink today.
The author knows his beer. He relates some fascinating details of beer-making around the world, including efforts to recreate famous beers of the past.
In the end, the author concludes that what matters most about beer is... well, you can probably guess the answer.
As befits a Kindle Short, the essay is brief--about a half-hour read for most people--with no wasted words.