A Beer Guide for Non-beer Drinkers

Beer bottles from several popular breweries.

In my previous post I mentioned I would provide a guide to help non-beer drinkers find a beer they might like. I also mentioned that I wouldn’t be able to help you if you don’t drink alcohol, but I take it back- I think I can help!

I’m not a scientist and wouldn’t be able to tell you exactly how our taste buds work, but one thing I do know is that we can acquire taste through experimentation and repetition. In other words, if you think you don’t like a certain food or drink because you’ve tried it once or twice, chances are you just need a little tweaking. Everything from a different texture to variations of the same food can affect our palette. In the case of beer, it’s usually just trying different styles until you find one you enjoy and can then move on to a different style. Believe it or not, I used to hate IPA’s when I first got into craft beer. Same thing with sours. But I eventually tried so many different sour beers that it just started growing on me. And now, I simply can’t get enough of it. When I host tasting parties I always make sure there’s a wide range of styles for people to sample because it’s interesting to see how they react to different beers. One of the things I’ve discovered is that those who tell me they don’t like beer simply don’t like hop forward beer. Solution? Find out what other alcohol they drink!

Check out the guide below and see if it works, but don’t treat it as dogma! It’s designed to help you explore different options and learn something new. And if you need additional information on a specific style, CraftBeer is an excellent resource.

So let’s get to it. What’s your poison?

If you drink…Try this beer style…
White wineWitbier
Belgian style wheat beers are citrusy but not hoppy
Red wine
Framboise (raspberry):usually sweet
Kriek (sour cherries): usually tart
ChampagneBerliner Weisse
Known as Champagne of the North. Tastes like champagne too!
German sour beer
Recipes include a wide variety of fruits and spices
WhiskeyRed ales, Barleywines or Bourbon-barrel aged beers
Sweet and boozy

Bonus: for the non-alcohol drinkers…

Try a milk stout such as Belching Beaver’s Peanut Butter Milk Stout or to kick it up a notch, Stone’s Xocoveza.

Extra Bonus: if you enjoy some of these beers and are ready to make a smooth transition into the bitter flavors, then try .394 (pale ale) by Alesmith Brewing or Duet (IPA) by Alpine Beer. These two beers have been my secret weapon for converting casual beer drinkers into hopheads!

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With today's high standards and rapidly evolving craft beer scene, even the top hospitality companies can't keep up. The beverage catering industry is booming with talented mixologists and experienced sommeliers, but where are the sophisticated beer folks when you want to draft in style? No need to drink a Bud Light out of a bottle anymore. From now on, you can enjoy your saison in a tulip glass with class! We support local breweries. What's your favorite beer?