Last week’s BOTW post introduced a lighter beer than normal, only as a way to help entice one of your friends deeper into the world of beer and different varieties.  Today, we look into what’s next.  Now that you have someone who is willing to move into more adventurous choices, what are the best options?  We are at a critical stage, and a bad choice here can destroy all of your hard work.

Friedrich Nietzsche once said, “He who would learn to fly one day must first learn to walk and run and climb and dance; one cannot fly into flying.”  A good point there.  And while there is a chance he was not referring to beer, I’ll just assume that he was. The point is that there is an important progression to follow to achieve full potential, whether that be flying or enjoying a Flying Dog.  Now that we are ready to move your not-so-timid-anymore friend deeper into beer, making too ambitious a leap could prove disastrous, and could even move them back to a life full of light beer and nothing else.  Think baby steps – there is no reason to rush the process.

I recommend moving to a nice golden ESB, like Left Hand Sawtooth.  This introduces a very slight level of hoppy bitterness, without being overpowering.  Gauge the reaction … good, bad, indifferent?  Maybe you could try something a bit smoother and nuttier like a Newcastle.  The key here is to make incremental progression into richer flavors without making any huge leaps.  And then you learn from their reaction.  If they liked the bitterness in the Sawtooth, move onto an IPA, like the Founders All Day IPA.  Maybe they would prefer something sweeter, which gives you the option of moving into fruit-flavored beers, like Dogfish Head Festina Peche or Sweetwater Blue.

There is no right answer.  There is no mountaintop beer you are helping them achieve.  You hold the keys to unlock the door into a universe of varied flavors, brewing styles, bitterness levels and so much more.  Be patient.  And now you’ve got a new drinking buddy.  Every time that happens, the world is a better place.  #Fact

November 12, 2013
Mike Pennington

Author: Mike Pennington

Mike Pennington, normal, 40-ish, father of three, living the suburban dream north of Atlanta.  

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