(photo by Ginalola Lowry)
Why do I write about beer? The easy answer to that is, “because that’s what I do.”
I could tell you a romantic story about how young man started out as a freelance writer, became an editor, and finally the author of two beer books and working on more. But I’m not going to get into that today.
The real reason I write about beer is because it’s fascinating.
I am sure that breaking the genetic code is also fascinating. However, I don’t believe that sipping an ice cold pint of genetic code can compare to sipping a perfectly chilled amber ale. I can also assure you that understanding the genetic code, as specific as that is, loses out when compared to beer, its history, its social influence, its political influence, and its nutritional influence only scratched the surface of the fascinating thing that is “beer”.
First of all: what is in it? Then, how is it made? How long has it been around? How many kinds are there? Why does this beer taste different than that beer? Once I understood what beer was and how it was made I begin to understand what makes a good beer. Once I understood what a good beer was I was able to put every beer I drink in perspective. And then there was “context”. There have been some mornings I am drinking a beer at 10 o’clock and posting the tasting notes here on this blog. (It takes an outstanding beer to catch my attention at that time of the morning.)
I have learned more than 100 people have forgotten about beer, while interviewing brewmasters such as Garrett Oliver at Brooklyn Brewery, Jim Koch of Boston Beer, Al Marzi of Mass Bay Brewing Company and Fritz Maytag of Anchor Brewing Co. And, I cannot begin to count the enjoyable meals in restaurants, at home, and in the middle of a Vermont woods in which the beer made the event memorable. All of the previous mentioned have been not only fascinating experiences but also what I call “research”.
Of course all this sounds like fun, but is it lucrative? It depends on how you define lucrative. If you define it by listing assets of real estate, financial holdings, and stocks and bonds, then it has not been terribly lucrative. However, if you accept it “lucrative” as having had the chance to enjoy some of the best beer, best food and the company of some of the best people in the world, then it is certainly lucrative.
And that’s why I write about beer.