Listen, I know you read the headline and are ready to rip me a knew one. So please hear me out, it won’t take long.
I am honestly asking this question and am doing some soul searching myself and could use a little help. So after you feel like ripping a new one, please only do so after reading this whole post.
First off, let me tell you why I got into (and still remain a fan of) craft beers:
- The Variety: I love variety. My current untappd unique check-ins are somewhere in the mid-800s. I’m a fan of different varieties of beers. I can appreciate the fact that I can get 25 different beers at the local hole-in-the-wall place within walking distance of my house.
- The Flavors: I started getting into craft beer because I found it difficult to taste the flavors on the side of wine labels. I had my fair share of wines and had a hard time trying to pull the “refined oaken cherry” from a merlot that was on the label. When I picked up Southern Tier’s Creme Brûlée Stout guess what I tasted? Creme Brûlée
Now here’s where I stand, as a homebrewer with about 75 batches under my belt:
- Nothing wows me anymore: Perhaps it’s because I’ve tried eight-hundred-and whatever beers and I’ve had great examples of styles, but nothing hits me anymore. I was at a brewery trying a beer that had a 90% BA rating…it really didn’t too much for me. Don’t get me wrong, I love a number of beers and love to drink them, but very few really make me stand back and pause anymore.
- I analyze beers more than I ever did: As I take a pint from someone I sit there, smell it, stick my nose in it, sip it and try to figure out what yeast went into it, what hops, the malt bill…basically I’m making work out of something I should just be simply enjoying.
- I like my beers better: Please do not take this as a “mine is better than theirs” point. It’s just that I made mine from conception, to measuring, to mashing, to boiling, to fermenting, to packaging. It’s all me and no one else. While I was talking with my wife (a pretty good baker) about this concept, she likened it to a bakery bought item to the same thing you can make at home. It just seems better because you made it.
- It’s getting harder to find a beer that I want to buy & try: Perhaps it has to do with my drinking style that I will ofter walk into a place do some searching for a beer to buy and walk out. Right now I’m at a 50/50 walk out/buy rate. I want to try new and exciting stuff, but I don’t want to shell out a minimum for $10 to do so because hardly anything now screams “buy me”.
So there you have it. Am I the only homebrewer out there who feels the same way? Do you think I’m nuts? I am talking about some elephant in the room that we as homebrewers don’t want to talk about?