Imagine this - It’s a hot day. You’re thirsty. You crack open a bottle of your favourite craft beer. The satisfying whoosh as the cap releases. The refreshing cool of the droplets glistening on the outside of the bottle. You bring it to your lips, tilt the bottle, and….
Wait, stop right there.
If you want to get the most out of your craft beer, please, please, please, don’t drink it straight out of the bottle. If you take the time to pour your beer into a glass, and to pour it properly, you’ll maximise your beer drinking experience.
Why? Well, the taste of a beer is only part of the enjoyment. We drink with all our senses. First our eyes, our noses, then our tastebuds. Even our ears come into play.
By pouring your craft beer into a glass first of all you’ll be able to appreciate the colour and clarity of the beer. Brewers have put a lot of thought into these aspects of a beer. It allows you to ask yourself questions – is this true to style, or is it not what you were anticipating. Is the colour what you were expecting? Excellent examples of some beer styles are particularly recognised for being pristine and clear e.g. a pilsner, others are deliberately hazy e.g. an East Coast IPA. Either way you’ll want to get the full appreciation.
By taking time to look closely you’ll also get some clues as to how the beer might taste. The texture and thickness of the head suggest how creamy the beer might be. The amount and vigour of visible bubbles will hint at the level of carbonation.
Turns out the bubbles are super important. The tiny bubbles are all releasing little puffs of delicious aromas from the hops and malts. Essential to the whole experience of tasting. The act of pouring also breaks up some of the carbon dioxide in the beer making it easier on your tummy. Yep, that’s right. If you drink straight out of the bottle the carbon dioxide will be released in your stomach. The result is that bloated feeling you can sometimes experience.
And last, but not least, just like your mother told you, it’s just good manners to use a glass!