Slap on that Speedo and smear on that sunscreen. OK, scratch the Speedo. You can’t pull it off anyway. What I’m trying to say is that summer is almost here and we’re running out of time to prepare. And when it comes to beer, there is definitely a right way and a wrong way to sip your suds.
After all, why spend all that money on good beer if you aren’t going to make sure that it’s in peak physical condition when it hits your lips?
Jim Koch, founder and head hops honcho at the Boston Beer Company – makers of all things Sam Adams – has a few tips that are sure to get you headed in the right direction:
1 – If you’re going to hit the beach, go for a beer packaged in brown bottles. (As opposed to green or clear.) Too much light (especially direct sunlight) can skunk beer. Brown bottles keep out sunlight better than green or clear, protecting your beer from those harmful rays. Which is why Koch will only use brown for Samuel Adams.
2 – Store beer upright in your cooler or on the door of refrigerator, never on its side. Storing beer on its side can expose more of the beer to oxygen and sunlight, causing it to go bad more quickly.
3 – Don’t be afraid to re-chill your beer. The cold-to-warm-to-cold again temperature thing is a myth. The colder you keep your beer (35 to 40 degrees F is good), the longer it will stay fresh. If your beer gets to room temperature, chill it again. However, if you’re beer gets too hot, say for example you’ve left it in a hot car all day, it will hasten its deterioration, causing the beer to oxidize giving it a “cardboard” taste.
4 – Always store your beer inside a cooler with a lid versus an ice bucket. The cooler will not only keep you beer colder longer, but will also protect it from sunlight, which again, is a major cause of skunking.
5 – The best way to properly enjoy your beer is poured in a room temperature glass, NEVER a chilled or frosty mug. A chilled mug can dilute the aroma and flavor of your beer if it’s too cold, or if it has picked up odors from the fridge.
That about covers the brew basics. If you follow these few simple rules (including the Speedo one) you are sure to have the best beer experience possible.
And so you don’t leave feeling as if I haven’t dropped the prerequisite pearl of wisdom, pontificate on this point: Beer is like a woman… if you take care of it and treat it with the respect it deserves, it won’t leave a bad taste in your mouth and you won’t have to throw it out before you’ve had your fill. Bottoms up!