Wednesday, June 15, 2011

It's not too expensive, you're too cheap.

This Stone Brewing Co. saying sums up my thoughts exactly. People complain about the price of beer. I'm not talking about a $1.19 24 ounce Steel Reserve or a $2.99 no-name six-pack from Trader Joe's, I'm talking about good, craft beer. An average six-pack now ranges from $9.99 to $14.99, higher or lower depending on the store and current promotion, and 22 ounce bombers range from $3.99 to $7.99 for standard releases, much higher for specialty and rarer selections. These prices aren't cheap, but you do get what you pay for. If you choose your beer on price alone, then don't expect to be challenged, surprised, or enlightened by the beverage in your glass. I'm not saying there aren't good, reasonably priced beers on the market. There are. I'm just asking you not to put down that barrel aged barleywine or dry hopped IIPA you have been eyeing because it is a couple dollars more than the macro brewed six-pack on the shelf above it. I paid $5.05 for a specialty coffee drink at Starbucks the other day. We think nothing of paying that kind of money for a coffee that lasts just a few minutes, several times a week for many. Why balk at paying around the same for a great beer? Go to your favorite bottle shop, whether it be Albertsons, BevMo!, or the corner liquor store, and pick something out that looks good. Really, really good! Don't look at the price when you pick it out, just pick something that you haven't tried before and think you will really enjoy. Now treat yourself to this special beer. When you open it don't think about the price, think about the love that went into the bottle. Think about the region of the country or part of the world it came from. Think about the ingredients that went into it. Research the beer to learn about its origins and how it was conceived, brewed, and distributed. There is so much you can learn about the libation you are consuming that you will forget all about the price tag, at least for the moment. Even if you can't afford to do this all the time, most of us can't, give yourself a little break once in a while from the monotony of the everyday and splurge on a beer that will prove that you're not too cheap, you are just a discerning beer connoisseur!

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