BeerAdvocate or Beer Snob?

Beer Smack by | Oct 2008 | Issue #21

Though it’s always been around, beer snobbery seems to be more prevalent these days. Ironically, it’s coming from many of the same people who despise the snob factor often associated with the wine world. And, we feel beer’s is much worse in comparison.

It starts with the cycle to beer enlightenment. One goes from drinking the norm, discovering craft beer options, turning their back on the norm, hating it, learning more—only to finally realize that though you might not agree with the business side of beer, the norm isn’t really “evil”—it’s just the norm (which can sometimes hit the spot). Some forget that beer is meant to be fun and complement life and that taste is subjective and everyone has a different palate. They consider “craft beer” to be a club. You’re either with them or against them!

Not to be confused with the beer geek, who is simply super passionate about beer, the beer snob is stuck in the cycle, taking their passion too seriously and to a level that’s actually counterproductive to spreading the good word about beer. Most don’t even know it, but their general attitude toward beer and those that “don’t get it” is extremely off-putting, often full of elitism and bigotry.

So which one are you? Glad you asked. You can find out right now by taking our simple quiz.

BA or Snob?
You run into someone who says they like beer. You ask what they like. They say, “Budweiser.” How do you respond?

a) “Bud sucks!”—you love to mock so-called inferior palates.
b) “Cool. Have you tried a craft-brewed lager?” And then you recommend one.

Whenever you see anything posted online about BudMillerCoors you:

a) Are quick to bash them, often with sophomoric and nasty jabs—it’s what craft beer drinkers are supposed to do, right?!
b) Keep an open mind, but remain constructive even if being critical.

Someone says they don’t like heavy or sour beers and list some beers they’ve tried that they didn’t like. They prefer balanced lighter ales and lagers.

a) You belittle them and then focus on your likes.
b) You recognize that everyone’s taste buds differ, palates evolve. Suggest some entry level brews that you think they might enjoy, and encourage them to keep on trying the range.

When your favorite craft brewery becomes successful, expands and begins to cater to a larger market, you:

a) Become critical of their every move, like your favorite band that everyone listens to now.
b) Welcome their growth as a positive sign for the industry.

You’re at a friend’s house for a party and all they have are macro beers. You forgot to bring your own brew.

a) You opt for a mass-produced soft drink instead. Your evening is ruined. You’ll blog about it later.
b) You realize that every beer has its time and place, and having a beer with friends is more important.

Some local beer drinkers are having a crawl and one of the stops includes a popular bar, but you feel it’s not up to your standards as they carry what you deem to be basic brews—geez, not a single Double IPA!

a) You bag out on the crawl and stay home.
b) You join the crawl, challenge yourself to find a worthy brew and have a great time.

So which one are you? If you answered “a” for any of the above, then you’re either a beer snob or are indicating signs of becoming one. No need to worry. The cure is simple. If you want to continue to elevate the image of beer as an approachable and versatile beverage, just be a bit more welcoming—even patient—toward those curious about the endless options within the beer world.

Remember: Beer is the ultimate social lubricant. It’s meant to be fun.

Respect Beer.