Seven Reasons Most People Drink Beer

I’ve talked to a lot of people about beer over the last decade and most of these people are never going to try or drink craft beer. They are the majority. The majority must be right, right? so I thought I would reflect on the reasons why the majority drink beer.

IMG_17851. IT’S COLD – this seems to be the most popular feature of beer. The odd thing is the cold is a feature of the fridge that the beer was stored in. The majority of the beer on the planet actually has to be served cold so you can’t taste it. As it doesn’t taste very nice if it warms even a little.

2. PRICE IS RIGHT – I find it fascinating that people who chose to buy “Premium Beer” seem to always make their purchase decision based on which beer is on sale. The only premium thing about “Premium Beer” is the premium price, as it generally didn’t cost the brewer any more to make.

3. MY FRIENDS DRINK IT – another reason which has nothing to actually do with the liquid inside the bottle. Nothing like peer pressure and advertising to help you make a purchase decision for beer.

4. IT COMES IN A GLASS – convenience. for most pouring the beer from a bottle into a glass is a waste of time. The more I think about this they are right, as the beer they are generally drinking you wouldn’t want to smell the aroma, so drinking from the bottle is probably the best thing.

IMG_77945. THIRST QUENCHING – it’s as though this is the only beverage you could possibly drink when you are thirsty. Hello, water? Then again maybe they have seen this article  A pint of beer is better for you after a workout than water, say scientists

6. IT MAKES ME SEXY – it is hard to understand the logic of “if I drink this beer brand I will be more attractive to the opposite sex”. So guys view beer commercials with attractive women in them, with the message they will be more attractive if they drink brand X. But women who watch the same commercial won’t be thinking “oh when I see a guy drinking brand X I will now find him desirable”. Where is the logic?

7. IT’S WHAT’S IN THE FRIDGE… at work, at home, at the party. The fact that people will just drink any brand that is handy, goes to show that the flavour of beer doesn’t matter at all, to most people. It just has to be cold and have near to no flavour and be as pale as possible (because colour is scary too when it comes to beer). They freak out when present with the flavour of an IPA.

It seems that the way most people purchase, drink and treat beer is a metaphor for their lives, and on a greater scale, the planet. They don’t care, they don’t want to think, or experience their senses or understand that things can be different, be better. They don’t want to be challenged by the new and different.

As a brewer, it is sad and frustrating that so many out there don’t take the time to look at the colour of their beer, smell the aromas of their beer (in a glass), taste the beer they are drinking (which isn’t overly cold) and thinking about the flavours they are tasting.

Here are some quick numbers of beer drinkers in New Zealand that don’t care about beer, unless it is cold and cheap.

If there are 129,600 craft beer drinkers in New Zealand of 2,880,000 people that drink alcohol, one could assume that there are 2,750,400 that just want a cold beer that tastes like nothing. That’s a pretty big number. Wonder if there is a way to convince a few of them that beer can actually have flavour that you can taste and enjoy.

What do you think it takes to show someone that beer can be enjoyed for the flavour?

Is it time the Craft Brewers of New Zealand started “hunting as a pack”?

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  • Peter Niepel

    Luke I am an artisan baker and all you say I can say about handmade “Craft bread”. Don’t give up, we love your beers.

  • Kyle Cameron

    Whenever I go to a party or just have a few quiets with someone, I always try to take an interesting wine or craft beer, or even a nice whisky. Being a Winemaking and Viticulture student, you’d think they would find that normal. But I still get told I’m wasting my time and money on expensive alcohol. You try to tell them its not about that and no-one wants to really know.

    I do get the odd convert though. I just don’t wanna preach.

  • Sherilyn Lee

    Well I for one am happy to be in the minority, and being female, I have even more strikes against me. I’m converting my friends one at a time to the wonderful ways of craft beer and it is starting to take..but it’s a slow road…they baulk at the price of a good beer and I just have to tell them that quality comes at a price.

    • Hey Sherilyn. The cost is indeed a big stumbling block to many. I think it is very important that people understand craft brewers aren’t getting rich or ripping anyone off though. I explained this in another comment – http://www.luke.co.nz/2014/05/craft-beer-bubble-new-zealand/#comment-1417213046 – it summarises all the reasons that pint of craft beer is so expensive.

      • Price is the big problem for the “majority”, and not only for beer. Look at the quality of the food the majority eat – cheap and lots. It does costs more to eat well and eat healthy. Eat & Drink cheap and you end up paying for it through health care and medicine costs.

        “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” ― Hippocrates

        • Agreed, though not sure I’d be implying craft beer is any better for you! 🙂
          As for the “lots” bit, have you seen the recent spate of articles on various blogs suggesting that perhaps the common wisdom that craft beer drinkers aren’t bingers might not be completely true?

          I think Ale of a Time started it here: http://aleofatime.com/2014/06/08/do-you-think-the-rise-of-craft-beer-will-impact-binge-drinking/

          • I might agree that if you actually engage with your beer, like smell and taste it, you are likely to spend more time drinking it vs you better drink that green bottle lager before it gets warm or its going to taste terrible.

      • Sherilyn Lee

        The price doesn’t worry me because the kind of beer I like doesn’t come cheap anyways. I’m a dark beer fan and I only try a couple different brews a week….we make some of the best stouts and porters ever. 2 good beers a week is my treat.

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  • Dean Smith

    I’m always amused – or is it bemused? – when Kiwis complain about the cost of beer. It’s cheaper in south-east Asia, I guess, but on the other side of the Tasman, we’ve become accustomed to massive excises. $12 pints of standard beer, $60 cartons.

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