With Valentine’s Day upon us, it’s time to look at ways we can enhance the relationships we have with those oh-so-special loves of our lives… #craftbeers. In particular, we should recognize how easy it is to fall into a rut, where we find ourselves drinking the same brews again and again without much thought or feeling.
To be sure, most of us are always going to have our very favourite beers – the life-long loves we turn to when we want comfort, warmth, and something steady. But that doesn’t mean we can’t bring a bit of excitement back into our lives, and feel the thrill that comes with tasting a new batch that melts our hearts for the first time every now and again.
Even if you’re in a committed, long-term relationship with your current beer, or are afraid to try new flavours because you’ve been hurt before, here are a few tips you use try to bring a little bit of spontaneity back to your love of craft beers this Valentine’s Day…
Use the Two Magic Words
There’s nothing quite like going to your favourite brew pub or local craft beer store and saying two magic words: “surprise me.”
When you put your love of craft beers in the hands of another person, and particularly someone who knows about the different lagers, stouts, and ambers that set your heart a fire, magical things can happen. They usually will go out of their way to surprise you, not to mention impress you at the same time.
It’s easy to forget there are others around us who love craft beer just as much as we do, and might know even more about the brewers in the area. Open yourself up to their perspective, and they’ll introduce you to some of their favourite flings.
Embrace your Wild Side
As with any kind of love, the best way to have a memorable experience is to occasionally go against your better judgment.
If you’re truly interested in trying something new and experiencing a craft beer you wouldn’t have expected, make a point to live dangerously. Order something by a brewer you never heard of; or, try a type of brew (like a bitter IPA, or a double chocolate stout) that wouldn’t fall into your normal rotation. Sometimes, you’ll be disappointed. But, on other occasions you’ll discover beers that will blow you away even though you wouldn’t normally have looked at them twice. You might even find a past experience steered you away from a bottle or brew you’ll come to love in the future.
Take a Flight
There’s no reason to be tied down to a single brew when new craft beers are being dreamed up all the time. In fact, sometimes the very best adventures come from ordering a sampler of tasters at your favourite brewpub.
This is the ideal way to experiment with different flavours, since you’ll get a variety of beers without having to drink a whole pint or growler of each. And, if you find love at first sip, you can always order a bigger glass afterwards.
Think Mail Order
Even if you live in an area with a wide selection of local craft brews, like I do, you can still look for love abroad. In fact, there are any number of ways to find new beers online, and in some areas, can be delivered right to your doorstep.
If you’ve been wanting to try some award-winners from a neighbouring province or country, the Internet might be able to provide you with the perfect opportunity. As with any kind of relationship that begins online, you’ll never know exactly what you’re going to get until you pop open the first bottle. But isn’t that part of the fun?
Spice Things Up at Home to demonstrate your Love of Craft Beer
So far, we’ve been talking about ways to try new craft beers when you’re out shopping or searching online. Don’t forget, though, you can always keep a few random bottles around the house for the evenings and weekends when you want a taste of something different. Getting out to enjoy new beers is wonderful, but spicing things up at home can be just as great.
As we look forward to another year of loving the many craft beers in our lives, what are your tips for finding new flings? Share your ideas with us in social or in the comments below!