Last year I set out a list of my hilariously named New Beers Resolutions and as one notorious for both rarely making or rarely keeping resolutions I thought I would re-visit the list to see how I did or didn’t fare on my goals.
- Relax and enjoy the act of drinking craft beer i.e. take a break from diligent note taking and photographing in order to actually savour the experience. Actually I think I did pretty good with this one though those who know me will interject with the fact that I have become a little co-dependent with the Untapped app on my phone; however, I like to think I can now take a quick picture, write a few thoughts or just bestow a couple of stars and voila I am back on track to just enjoy the experience of savouring a great beer. I rarely carry around my rate beer notepad and I have taken to relying on my memory more than any physical proof that I really did try and enjoy any given beer.
- Learn more about the ‘craft’ aspect of craft beer. Hmm, this one is a little subjective but in the course of various blog posts I have done some further research into what constitutes a ‘craft’ beer or ‘craft’ brewery and while I cannot say with certainty that any hard and fast label will remain in perpetuity to distinguish craft from macro I like to think it will always be the beer drinkers who decide what truly represents the ‘craft’ aspect be it size, motivation, quality or a combination of many factors.
- Visit more of our local BC Breweries and tap houses. I did do this, in fact, I even spent a day at Steamworks Brewery assisting with their beer production. I also made a point of trying several new Washington and Oregon brewers anytime I was down in the States instead of simply re-visiting the places I know and love.
- Be discerning in my beer purchasing habits i.e. stop buying bottles with cool labels and start cultivating a means of selection. I like to think I am getting better at this but then along came my Pumpkin and Christmas Beer countdowns and all my bad habits re-surfaced with a vengeance i.e. funny beer names and creative labels became a de facto means of selection. Though I have to say I did my best to only splurge on beer styles I know and love, which means I have a little cache of Russian River sours and barrel aged stouts on hand for emergencies.
- Go to the Great American Beer Festival. Just didn’t do it so I am putting this back on the list and if I don’t make it to GABF I will got to the GCBF this year.
- Drink more beers on tap. In conjunction with my quest to try more tap houses I fulfilled this resolution with gusto. I am a big fan of draft beer often preferring what’s on tap to what’s in the bottle so this one wasn’t too hard for me.
- Get out of my comfort zone with home brewing. Not really but I do have another batch of ingredients ready to be made into a beer and I chose a random porter recipe to try so I think that kind of qualifies as meeting this resolution. To be honest, reflecting back on my decision to make this resolution I have to say I do not ever see me being a big home brewer, I really like to try different beer and the thought of being saddled with a lot of any one style is somewhat distressing.
- Become a certified beer judge (I see this as working in conjunction with resolution 1 since I would have a designated venue for critical drinking). Nope. I looked into becoming a beer judge and becoming a cicerone, both require a lot of work and commitment and I am uncertain about the degree of my desire to pursue either of these avenues. I think both certifications would be interesting challenges but at the end of the day I don’t see an immediate applicability to my workaday life, perhaps if someone in the industry wants to hire me I could consider beer judge or cicerone as career extensions.
- Make myself a beer calendar so I can keep on top of my inventory. Not really but I have been more on top of my inventory to ensure no lager gets left too long and no barley wine gets drunk too soon.
- Find additional ways to bake with craft beer. I did do this by incorporating pumpkin ale into a batch of chili, reducing golden ale with garlic and onion for an Irish stew and adding ice cream to stout for beer floats (not technically baking but creating nonetheless).
- Do more blogging (posting and reading) to get to know more people in this amazing family of craft beer enthusiasts. According to my handy dandy year end report from WordPress I really stepped up my game in terms of output last year increasing not only the number of posts but more importantly the numbers of both views and visitors for which I am eternally amazed and grateful.
- Help my cat cut back on his drinking problem… Well it’s been a tough haul for Merl but we finally got him switched over to hard liqour.
Happy New Year to all my readers and I am looking forward to a 2013 filled with many great beers, great beer events and the company of great beer geeks!