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Old 05-21-2010, 01:36 AM   #1
Phunhog
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Default How do you choose a commercial beer??

Hi Guys,
I don't drink very many commercial beers anymore because of all of my own brewing. I wanted to try some different styles so I bought a few commercial beers. It got me thinking though on why we buy a certain beer. I rarely buy the same beer twice.....there is just too much good stuff out there!! So what influences your beer choice? Is it the style of beer, the brewery, beer reviews, label, price, location of brewery, etc.....?? I am planning out a nanobrewery and am really curious why people buy the beer they do. Do you have a few favorites that you buy over and over again? Or do you mix it up and try something new? Do you ever "seek out" a beer? There are sooooo many great beers out there and sometimes I wonder how to make my beer standout. Thanks. Al

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Old 05-21-2010, 01:40 AM   #2
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OH hell.....

I buy something that I've heard of here but never tried, or something with a great name, or something new by a brewery that
i know and trust, OR.....I try to find a double or triple IPA that will satisfy my insatiable desire for..BRAINS!!!!!!!...I mean....HOPS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Old 05-21-2010, 01:14 PM   #3
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The 'new to me' beers that I have tried have been mostly based on talk on this site as well as a few friends who I consider them to have good beer knowledge. I don't really look or listen to beer reviews and don't know any good bartenders that have good recommendations.

Not sure if that helps, but if I haven't heard anyhting about the beer, then beer description and discussion of the brewery really influence my decisions.

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Old 05-21-2010, 02:13 PM   #4
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I only go hogwild at a local pub called Brendan's here in louisville.

They offer a 5 beer sampler of your selection. 4 oz glaasses each. I get 2.....

So 10 4 oz glasses of an incredible variety of beers.

They never have any less than 15 or 16 casks and kegs of incredible beers both heard of and not.

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Old 05-21-2010, 02:30 PM   #5
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I tend to buy beers that I don't brew myself. I'm past the point of seeking out specific beers or breweries. If I'm not familiar with a brewpub, I'll buy the sampler. I even buy samplers at places I've been to many times. I never buy two pints of the same beer in a session, drives the bartenders crazy since many of them pride themselves in remembering what the regulars drink.

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Old 05-21-2010, 03:41 PM   #6
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I like variety. I usually get something that I have not had before, but sometimes I get a good brand of whatever style I'm in the mood for. And the label usually has to look good.

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Old 05-25-2010, 06:47 PM   #7
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Labels and a suggestion of a fellow brewer/beer drinker will get me to buy a beer.

I've been having this discussion on my blog as well. I'd love if you'd toss your two cents in there.

Do Craft Labels Affect Your Decision

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Old 05-25-2010, 07:20 PM   #8
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Mystery Beer Monday

A local pub here has a pretty impressive beer selection and on Monday's they put all the beer names in a hat and whatever you draw you get for $2. There's a group of 5-10 of us that do this almost weekly so we can also share/trade back and forth. The beers change with the seasons and inventory as well.

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Old 05-28-2010, 02:00 PM   #9
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What got me into beer in general was the ability to mix and match brews that I never heard of. In those days I'd walk into a six pack shop, read a bunch of labels, and then take a shot in the dark as to whether it was good or not.

However, now that I homebrew my entire outlook is different. Lately I've been looking for beer that I can't brew at home (like lagers since I don't have a lagering capability). Last week I bought 2 beers because they were swing top bottles so that I could use them for bottling. They were the only swing tops in the store.

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Old 05-28-2010, 04:02 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phunhog View Post
So what influences your beer choice? Is it the style of beer, the brewery, beer reviews, label, price, location of brewery, etc.....??
Thanks for posting this question as I think about this from time to time while looking at hundreds of great beers at my distributor.

1. Style of Beer - This is probably the most important factor to me. For example I love imperial stouts so for me it woudn't matter what the brewery is unless I have had a bad experience with that brewery before

2. Brewery - I will buy from certain breweries that I know produce consistantly great beer. I will also try a new brewery as well so it can go either way.

3. Beer Reviews - I think this helps as well. If I see a new brewery I might not buy from them but I might go home and check out their beer on ratebeer to see what people think about it.

4. Label - I think this is important but can go either way. I bought Terrapin in Virginia last year knowing nothing about the brewery but the lables looked nice. My thoughts were if the brewery spends money on the label they take pride in their beer as Im sure this affects their P&L. Now you can't always go by this as Im sure there are great lables but terrible beer. Some dogfish head bomber lables look like they are made from an ink jet printer but the beer is great. This goes the same for the text on the label. I had a beer called "Vanilla Java Porter" but it tasted terrible but sounded so good.

5. Price - When I was single and had no bills there was no concern here..lol..Now with a house and kids this is important. I do like bombers but stay in the $5-$10 range. Every once and I while I will go above that price.

6. Location of Brewery - This is an interesting one. I have been drinking Belgium, British, and German beers for 13 years but for the past 3 years or so I have almost only drank American Beers. I believe that America has the most diverse and best beer in the world. Yes there are certain british, belgian, and german beers that probably can't be replicated here but we get damn close! That bering said for me its almost always American craft beers.

7. Recomendations - Marko73 alluded to this before but I definitely will try beers that are recommended by my friends. We all love great craft beer so this is a big factor.

If I was to narrow it down I would say the most important items to me when chosing a beer are style, price, and recommendation by friends/good review on ratebeer
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