In Defense of Macrobrews
By: Joshua Chamberlain
Posted: December 27, 2011
There is a small liquor store around the corner from my house. This is the type of store that sells wine, top-end hard alcohol, and small quantities of beer. The gentleman who owns and runs the store seems nice enough, but I take issue with the fact that he does not sell beer in quantities larger than a six-pack.
Just who does this guy think he is?
Our pleasant purveyor has apparently forgotten what business he is in. More importantly, he appears to have forgotten why people buy his product. I think he, and all of us, really, need a little refresher. It is high time people stop unfairly maligning the macrobrew.
The question our man must ask himself is why people buy beer in the first place. There are a number of different reasons, each of which must be examined individually:
1. Alcohol is a depressant. If I am looking to relax, I do not want to think too much. I want to watch the game, unwind after a long day, or just forget about my child’s latest tantrum without being forced to consider the complex flavor in my mouth. No, I want a known quantity. If your friend wants to unwind and you hand him a light beer, he will not complain. I guarantee it. The only thing he might do is make fun of you (before he has the beer, of course). This brings me to reason #2.
2. Beer drinking is a social event, unless it is a horrifyingly lonely event. There is very little middle ground. If you are drinking with someone else, the event should be about the conversation and the human interaction, not the beer itself. Have you ever had a conversation hit a lull before veering off into idle talk about the quality of the beer? That is a mark on your conversational abilities, not the beer itself. Rather than using a trendy microbrew as a conversational crutch, come up with some talking points ahead of time. Or, just try to be more interesting. If people want to talk to you, the light beer will definitely get the job done. Thus, if you are attached to microbrews, it might have something to do with #3.
3. You are probably fat. It is what it is. If you are looking to drop a few pounds – and let’s be honest, who isn’t? – calorie-laden microbrews are probably not a good choice for you. In this regard, the microbrews are a catch-22 of sorts. You drink the trendy microbrew to try and spur on conversation. Unfortunately, the extra calories only serve to expand your waistline, thus making you less likeable and making other people less inclined to want to talk to you in the first place. In that sense, by drinking microbrews you are only digging your own social grave. This, of course, makes #4 even more important.
4. Beer makes you feel better about yourself. It does not matter what beer you are drinking; the alcohol softens things and makes the world more tolerable. Since this is the main goal of beer drinking in the first place, why would you buy beer that ultimately makes you tubbier, thus making you feel worse about yourself? It doesn’t make any sense. You know what makes me feel better about myself? Enjoying what I do and not spending a fortune to do it. This leads us to #5.
5. Macrobrews are cheaper. Oh, you have a lot of discretionary income to waste, richy? How about you donate it to charity or put your kids in a better school rather than blow it all on snooty microbrews? No response? I don’t have a good answer for that, either, especially in light of #6.
6. There is little chance that the macrobrew will taste bad. I also reject the assertion that it doesn’t taste like anything. It absolutely does, and you know you like it. The only people who say it doesn’t taste good have something to prove. They are trying to prove it to you and, more disappointingly, are trying to prove it to themselves. I have had a number of atrocious IPAs that leave a bad taste in my mouth and a bad attitude in my brain. Nobody wins in that situation. Luckily, the solution is only a 30-pack away.
There you have it. If you want a good-tasting beer that won’t break the bank, makes you feel good about yourself, doesn’t make you fat, enables real discussion, and helps you relax, you know which way to turn. You will thank me later.