Monday, December 16, 2013

Beer Aged 21 Years

Beer Aged 21 Years

I had someone ask me at a beer shop the other day what beer would age well for 21 years. And instantly I was confused. Why would you want to age a beer for that long? In any event, they just had a daughter and they wanted a beer that would be from when they were born. I mean.. that still seems stupid to me. Not only because 21 years for a beer seems like... well, like they'll be tasting beer that taste worst than Coor's or PBR.

Not to mention that it's a waste to not enjoy a good beer when its good. It seems like a waste to give to someone just turning 21. At that age you really aren't looking for GOOD beer, you're just looking for something to get fucked up at. Teens and barely drink legal kids are chugging shit like bud, coors and PBR without concern of taste.

It's sort of like giving a baby some lobster. That shit is lost on them and they just want mooshed together peas and carrots. 

If you're aging beer, another good style would be Gueuze. Or perhaps a sour like that, but let's be fucking honest here. Some new to legal drinking beer drinker is going to like a Gueze like a virgin will enjoy anal sex. That shit is just going to make them a wine drinker for life. Is that a crude metaphor? You're damn right it is, but it's only fitting since you're trying to force a hobby on to your kids, like a broken trailer trash living former high school prom is vicariously living their dreams on Toddler and Tiaras.

Your newly turned 21 kid isn't going to give a shit about how that beer has hints of barnyard funk and horse blank smells. Or if the lacing on the glass is clingy as fuck. Ya' know.I get the idea. You can enjoy something that was aged along with them, but unless you want your kid to think and associate "good beer" with something that more than likely taste like cardboard, it seems pretty foolish.

A better option would be to just invest that money you would have spent on those old beers... shit, with aged beers like that, you could easily turn them around and sell them for a shit load of cash. How about you invest that money into some sort of college fund for the kid. It'll be a lot longer lasting than having them swig back some beer that time has forgotten. Don't you worry, they'll appreciate "get-you-shitfaced" alcohol just as much as you do when they're chugging it back with their frat mates or dorm roomies. Only they'll gladly throw back those shitty beers you wouldn't touch.

I'm going to flat out say it. In general, the majority of beers, even cellarable styles like high ABV stouts and barleywines, just do not improve with age. Sure, if they're tasting hot out of the gate, they'll mellow out. But by and large, you're not going to improve a beer by aging it.

It gets to the point that cellaring a beer is really unnecessary. And in fact, cellaring wine is equally foolish. The vast majority of wine you buy over the counter isn't made with the mindset of laying it down for half a decade or more. It's made for pretty much immediate consumption.

Over all, you just have to realize that the whole fact of a beer "improving" is completely subjective. It's not a harda nd fast rule. Some beers will taste better, some will not do well over the ravages of time. Even if they are high in ABV to begin with.  At some point you just need to stop telling yourself you're cellaring a beer if it's simply just sitting there waiting to be drank when you get around to it or holding it for a special occasion that is coming up soon.

Forcing your children to drink something that old isn't going to do you any favors. I mean, most of the time kids like to rebel against what their parents like anyway simply to break out and have their own identity. So perhaps you shouldn't push beer on them, unless you actually want them to NOT drink. In which case, I think we just discovered the best way to prevent alcoholism in teenagers.

Have a craft beer parent.

1 comment:

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