Vintage Beer: A Taster's Guide to Brews That Improve over Timeby Patrick Dawson
2014 Gold Medal Winner from the North American Guild of Beer Writers for Best Beer Book Like good wine, certain beers can be aged under the right conditions to enhance and change their flavors in interesting and delicious ways. Good candidates for cellaring are either strong, sour, or smoked beers, such as barleywines, rauchbiers, and lambics.… See more details below
2014 Gold Medal Winner from the North American Guild of Beer Writers for Best Beer Book Like good wine, certain beers can be aged under the right conditions to enhance and change their flavors in interesting and delicious ways. Good candidates for cellaring are either strong, sour, or smoked beers, such as barleywines, rauchbiers, and lambics. Patrick Dawson gives a list of easy-to-follow rules that lay the groundwork for identifying these cellar-worthy beers and then delves into the mysteries behind how and why they age as they do. Beer styles known for aging well are discussed and detailed profiles of commonly available beers that fall into these categories are included. There is also a short travel guide for bars and restaurants that specialize in vintage beer gives readers a way to taste what this new craft beer frontier is all about.
Many wines improve with age. As beer expert and author Dawson explains in this clearly written volume, some beers also change favorably or improve over time. He opens with his first experience, a magnum of vintage Duvel, and closes with a select guide to bars offering such tipples. In between, he highlights particular types and brands of beers, comparing in rich detail aged ones to young, fresh examples. Readers will find descriptions of the resulting flavors of fig, toffee, or port alluring enough to follow his steps for cellaring beer themselves. What distinguishes Dawson's writing is the seamless way in which he blends the science of aging beer with language that most readers can grasp. This work will be both useful and enjoyable for beer drinkers, but those who are more familiar with vintage wine will also relate to much of the content here. VERDICT An appealing read for more than just a niche audience of vintage beer enthusiasts. Highly recommended for collections with a focus on alcoholic beverages.—Peter Hepburn, Coll. of the Canyons Lib., Santa Clarita, CA
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Meet the Author
Patrick Dawson is an award-winning beer writer, an avid homebrewer, a BJCP beer judge, and a general lover of all things beer. He is the author of Vintage Beer, a guide to identifying and understanding the chemistry of beer styles that will improve when cellared. Dawson is the resident beer columnist for the North Denver Tribune and has written for DRAFT Magazine, Zymurgy, All About Beer Magazine, Craft Beer & Brewing, and multiple other publications.
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