Drinking your Cellar

Discussion in 'Cellaring / Aging Beer' started by MCMASTERSANCHEZ, Jun 28, 2013.

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    MCMASTERSANCHEZ Aspirant (260) Jun 28, 2012 Indiana
    Beer Trader

    So people build these great vast cellars that go on for miles and miles sometimes. My question is when do people drink them? I was going to empty my cellar for my bachelor party but mine is getting to large even to drink at a bachelor party. I mean my cellar isn't huge by any means but I have close to 30-40 bombers maybe and thats not including my 15 or so 12 oz bottles. I mean say you have 40 bottles and 6 guys that almost 7 bottles each. With ABV of 10%-15% I just do see it being possible.

    So when do you drink your cellar?
  2. OddNotion

    OddNotion Devotee (478) Nov 1, 2009 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    Beer isnt for drinking... its for collecting.
  3. OddNotion

    OddNotion Devotee (478) Nov 1, 2009 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    I am in the process of going through my 200 or so bottles. Slowly but surely. My plan is to have my cellar only consist of lambic by the time I am done. I have not had many beers that impressed me past 2.5 years and most of them are at their best 1-1.5 years. All my personal experience though so YMMV.
  4. stupac2

    stupac2 Zealot (518) Feb 22, 2011 California
    Beer Trader

    I don't get this question, of course people are just going to drink from their cellar occasionally in perpetuity, while continuing to add to it. They'll probably never finish it. Why would they?
    cavedave, JrGtr, SteelersX and 3 others like this.

    MCMASTERSANCHEZ Aspirant (260) Jun 28, 2012 Indiana
    Beer Trader

    The question is when? Not sure what there is to not get. When do you drink from your cellar. Drinking it all is just a me thing and then start over which might not be the case any more. It appears you semi answered the question by saying perpetuity. But was wondering if people drink from it because its tuedays and they can or if they wait for a special day etc
  6. larryi86

    larryi86 Poo-Bah (2,540) Apr 4, 2010 Delaware
    Supporter Beer Trader

    I actually hit up my cellar for my best friends birthday last weekend. We don't get together very often and since I am low on cash do to unemployment I took a some stuff out of my cellar to celebrate. Usually once a month I will grab something out of the cellar just because I don't feel like drinking other beer I have.

    MCMASTERSANCHEZ Aspirant (260) Jun 28, 2012 Indiana
    Beer Trader

    I might have to take a bottle with me to vegas for my 30th here in August I think
  8. rrryanc

    rrryanc Disciple (310) May 19, 2006 California
    Beer Trader

    If your cellar is more than a coupla hundred bottles, then every day is a special day. There's a few beers I want to share with specific people, and a few I'd like to share with fellow beer nerds, so I hang on to those. Past that though, the biggest limiting factor is that most of my cellar is large bottle high ABV, which can a bit much for me to take down on a weeknight solo.
  9. PALMEJ1

    PALMEJ1 Aspirant (214) Dec 8, 2008 Alabama
    Beer Trader

    I drink a bottle from the cellar almost ever night. Sometimes with others, sometimes solo. Pretty simple really.
    Sarlacc83, cavedave, RStang13 and 2 others like this.
  10. jbakajust1

    jbakajust1 Moderator (1,095) Aug 25, 2009 Oregon
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    Whenever I feel like having something beyond what I have I brewed myself or the occasional commercial beers. I don't have many beer aficionados over to share with, so many times it is pop it tonight, and reseal it until tomorrow. I maybe have a cellar beer once a month or so, sometimes on special occasions (bought a house, birth of our sons, birthday, father's day, etc).
  11. bozodogbreath

    bozodogbreath Disciple (389) Oct 19, 2006 Indiana
    Beer Trader

    Once you have accomplished a few years of cellaring, there is no reason not to be drinking from it on a regular (2-3 x's a week) basis. The first world problem is letting beers sit too long without drinking them and therefore not really keeping up with the nuances that occur while cellaring beers. I cellar a variety imperial and BA imperial stouts. I don't buy a case of beer to just set it aside for 5 years. I drink a couple fresh, I drink a couple at 6 months, then a year, etc. Doing this I get an idea of at what age I really enjoy a particular stout.
    herman77, Cubatobaco and claaark13 like this.
  12. TheBeerDad

    TheBeerDad Initiate (0) Sep 6, 2012 Michigan
    Beer Trader

    Its your bachelor party, make them drain there cellars!
  13. ohiobeer29

    ohiobeer29 Defender (680) Feb 2, 2013 Ohio
    Beer Trader

    hire me as the drink master I'll have that cellar bare by the next morning. peer pressure and hot women work every time
  14. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (5,334) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
    Supporter Beer Trader

    I'm slowly drinking more than I'm adding to my cellar. Most of the beers left are last bottles of.
    cavedave likes this.
  15. xnicknj

    xnicknj Initiate (0) May 25, 2009 Pennsylvania

    Vanquishing the cellar is an impossible task. I hardly buy more than 1 of anything anymore and I still seem to have more in there than I did a year ago.
    GRG1313 likes this.
  16. Demer

    Demer Initiate (0) Dec 13, 2010 New Jersey

    I think my feller is at like 400 something bottles now and honestly it's a hobby like anything else. I have a lot so I can share with my friends and get the same from them in return. Bigger the cellar the more epic the bottle shares.
    Cubatobaco and SteelersX like this.
  17. BearsOnAcid

    BearsOnAcid Savant (957) Mar 17, 2009 Washington
    Beer Trader

    You should create some sort of goal with cellaring. If you are collecting bombers every week and have no idea when you should drink them then I'm not sure why you are wasting your money.
  18. Davl22

    Davl22 Disciple (374) Sep 27, 2011 New Hampshire
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    I drink from my cellar every week. I think the important thing is keeping a good inventory on it and making sure priority goes to the beers that will fade more quickly.
    bozodogbreath likes this.
  19. stupac2

    stupac2 Zealot (518) Feb 22, 2011 California
    Beer Trader

    I think the problem is that most people consider that cellaring. It always amazes me how many people start cellaring without any clear goal or even an idea of the purpose.
    CowsandBeer likes this.
  20. forgetfu

    forgetfu Initiate (174) Jul 27, 2007 Colorado
    Beer Trader


    I have more than 400 lambics from a wide variety of years in my cellar. I drink from my cellar regularly. I replace bottles regularly. This is why I continue to have 400+ bottles of lambic in my cellar of various vintages.

    My goal is not to drink my cellar one specific event. It's to have a well maintained cellar full of a variety of beers and vintages that I believe will mature with age.

    When I die, hopefully at least some of my kids like lambic and they can continue to enjoy the cellar. There is no end planned to my cellaring, but there's certainly an end goal which I'm currently maintaining.

    (I actually want to increase mine to closer to 500-600 lambics. That way, I can remove and replace 50-60 bottles a year and still maintain a tenish year rotating vintage cellar)
  21. csano

    csano Initiate (0) Sep 21, 2010 Washington

    How long did it take you to get to this point with the lambics?
  22. forgetfu

    forgetfu Initiate (174) Jul 27, 2007 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    5 years or so, plus I go to Europe for work probably twice a year which helps. I've been cellaring (mostly Barleywines) for 20 years now.
    csano likes this.
  23. podunkparte

    podunkparte Initiate (0) Nov 14, 2009 Washington

    Anytime I want.... That's the point of having a collection of beer.
    NWer, yamar68, gkatsoris and 2 others like this.
  24. jaIsPoAn

    jaIsPoAn Initiate (0) Aug 1, 2012 New York

    Well for starters not in one night
    NWer likes this.

    MCMASTERSANCHEZ Aspirant (260) Jun 28, 2012 Indiana
    Beer Trader

    Yea it was just one thought thats why I asked when most people drink it and some people have been helpful others not so much
  26. CommanderOfAwesome

    CommanderOfAwesome Devotee (468) Aug 30, 2012 California

    If you mean a purpose with every beer, sometimes mistakes happens with me. I buy something to cellar and try with a year on it, but it gets lost I forget etc... then it 18 months later. Eh usually still tastes pretty good. Or sometimes I'll buy a beer that I'd like to try, but it doesn't make it in the rotation for a while. I didn't really cellar with a goal in mind but just didn't get to it right away.

    I do agree with you on generally there should be a purpose with a cellar. For example people who cellar IPAs, single stouts, etc..but whatever, they'll learn.
  27. JohnfromPurdue

    JohnfromPurdue Initiate (90) Apr 27, 2009 Wisconsin
    Beer Trader

    When I was looking for a fridge to cellar my beer I purposely bought a mini fridge. I wanted a smaller cellar to keep my beer buying/hoarding in check. Therefore, if it doesn't fit in my cellar, I have to drink it or trade it for something I will drink soon.
    MCMASTERSANCHEZ likes this.
  28. SteelersX

    SteelersX Disciple (374) Jan 30, 2011 New York
    Beer Trader

    It's another part of the hobby of beer. To each his own. The people most vocally against cellaring are usually just jealous.
    jersson and PALMEJ1 like this.
  29. Greenplastic615

    Greenplastic615 Devotee (412) Nov 4, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    My problem is that I buy beer faster than I consume it. So, the cellar is just a staging area for future drinking, with a few exceptions of things I'd really like to save for a special occasion.

    The fun of cellaring, I think, is to have an inventory of things that you can bust out when friends come over or you go to a tasting that covers a good variety of styles, breweries, regions, etc.
    jersson, jmm380 and MCMASTERSANCHEZ like this.
  30. Skull40

    Skull40 Initiate (191) Apr 1, 2010 Indiana

    When I ended up having three houses at the same time, I decided I could drink from my cellar for several months before I "needed" to buy more. It was a nice run.
  31. Grohnke

    Grohnke Initiate (0) Sep 15, 2009 Illinois

    Find / organize a tasting. Group tastings are perfect for maintaining a reasonably sized cellar
    jbeezification and riemster like this.
  32. BrettHead

    BrettHead Devotee (479) Sep 18, 2010 Nebraska

    Can't speak for others but that's exactly what I do. Beer is meant to be drank, imo.
  33. cavedave

    cavedave Poo-Bah (2,283) Mar 12, 2009 New York
    Beer Trader

    It can be done. I have decreased by over 150 bottles in the last year. Was replacing some of them for a while, but now I am unemployed, so they go out only.

    Trouble is that we are tweaking recipes for a possible nano brew opening, so the cellar has gotten much smaller, but the homebrew stock now is out of control.

    Haha, guess the answer really is it can't be done:wink:
  34. claaark13

    claaark13 Zealot (504) Nov 29, 2007 Indiana
    Beer Trader

    You should start drinking your cellar once you realize that most beer isn't favorable for aging for most palates.

    I spent the end of 2011 through early 2013 drinking down my cellar. I also have gained ~60lbs, which I am now in the process of losing (I actually would fluctuate down during the summer due to exercise, but I was +60lbs by April 2013). This entire time, I was slowly including things into the cellar for the long-run, while adding and drinking things that I don't find to age favorably after 2-3 years. I can now, finally, look into my cellar and not find anything that "needs" to be consumed soon.

    Now my goal is to lose the 60lbs I gained while adding beers that should age for 3+ years favorably. I probably drink from my cellar once a week, and any other times I'm drinking local IPAs or beers from memberships I have. Like forgetfu, I have no intentions of depleting my cellar.
    forgetfu likes this.
  35. NWer

    NWer Crusader (714) Mar 10, 2009 Washington
    Beer Trader

    I admit it. I have a buying problem. Plus great beer is meant to be shared. So, it just sits around for the right occasion which doesn't happen as often as my buying. It will long outlive me so I hope my descendents have one hell of a party :slight_smile:
    jmm380 and libbey like this.
  36. OakedCanuck

    OakedCanuck Initiate (0) Jun 23, 2009 Washington

    Can you adopt me?

    Also, are you deathly allergic to anything?
    jmm380, DimensionX, stupac2 and 2 others like this.
  37. phillybeer7779

    phillybeer7779 Initiate (0) May 31, 2010 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    I just have one question: Have you theen my thellar?
    JulianB and cw577enfield like this.
  38. HighWine

    HighWine Initiate (146) Dec 11, 2010 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    I'm trying to rid myself of 200+ bottles that I've accumulated and never seem pour off. The result is behavior like making BCBS ice cream and bieramisu, 2010 Dark Lord mousse, and opening KRE to share in the dark, served in a plastic cup, while watching fireworks in a field on 4th of July.

    For the most part I've stopped buying beer. I figure once my cellar is finally gone, there'll always be killer beers to buy and consume when I want.
  39. RDMII

    RDMII Disciple (351) Apr 11, 2010 Georgia

    Why does it matter? I'd assume every single person has their own reasons and that they all aren't really concerned about anyone else's reasons. I also assume that no one builds a cellar for one single event or have a list of specific events and tastings that they've planned ahead for years. You buy beer and either cellar it or drink it, and then later drink what you've cellared. It's not that complicated.
  40. JasonLovesBeer

    JasonLovesBeer Initiate (0) Mar 27, 2013 British Columbia (Canada)

    I try to keep mine steady at 60 or so bottles. Of course I'm always over, because I just HAVE to have the latest whatever it is from one of the ten breweries I love or this might be my only opportunity to get this bottle of Cantillon or such-and-such gueze.

    But to decimate the collection over a short period - that sounds horrific to me. Also, a brew worth cellaring is a brew worth drinking only when you're close enough to sober to truly have a decent palate - pass around fancy beers until everyone's had around 2 bomber's worth, then switch to more standard (but quality) fare.
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