A Girl’s Guide to Good Beer

You always hear about girls getting together for a night on the town to enjoy a few cosmos or fancy-glassed martinis. You also know about girls nights in, which consists of watching chick flicks and bonding over a bottle of wine (which contrary to popular belief, boys, does not happen in our underwear). But what you don’t hear all too often is girls heading for the mountains, having a sure sign of a good time or flirting with the most interesting man in the world. Translation: Busch, Bud Light and Dos Equis — and beer in general — aren’t #1 on a girl’s list of go-to drinks.

That could easily be because some girls don’t care for the taste of beer. In fact, I have a few girlfriends who have long been opposed to beer in favor of wine or liquor. But I’m here to tell you that with as many microbreweries that have been born and booming these past few years, there are way too many “chick beers” to choose from for girls to not have an affinity for good beer. Not that I’m a beer aficionado or anything, but if your reaction to beer is a bitter beer face, here are three ways to branch out and find something you like.

1) Ease yourself into it. 

A good starter beer is Michelob Ultra’s line of fruit-flavored beers in Lime Cactus, Dragon Fruit Peach and Pomegranate Raspberry flavors. The fruitiness is subtle enough not to overpower the beer, but then again the beer flavor isn’t strong enough to overpower the fruit. A good balance, especially on those hot summer days, which are bound to be upon us with these record-breaking temps lately. And for those who might be into that whole low-calorie beer thing, that’s what Michelob Ultra is known for. So sip, sip away.

My brew of choice for our annual lake vacation at the Ozarks.

2) Stay classy. 

I first tried this concoction at (whaddya know) a wine bar called 33 in the Lafayette Square neighborhood of St. Louis. The wine and beer list there was so extensive that I didn’t know what to order. But after telling our server that I was a big fan of Belgian-style beers, he recommended the Duchesse de Bourgogne. It’s a super fancy name that I don’t even know how to pronounce. So my suggestion when ordering it at a classy establishment is to say, “I’ll have the Dutchess.” Then, it’ll just sound like slang — like you’re so clued in to what this beer is all about that you don’t even need to say the full name. (Hey, it works for me.) Anyway, this beer is actually dark, but sweet. And rich, just like the Duchesse de Bourgogne. Whoever she is.

Love the label too.

Photo courtesy of Beer Advocate

3) Fake it. 

If beer still doesn’t cut it for you, back yourself all the way up to the very beginning of the beer spectrum by trying a beer that really shouldn’t even be considered a beer. The flavor is so yummy and sweet and fizzy that you’d think you had just poured yourself a glass of sparkling grape juice. But it’s not grape juice, and it’s not wine. It’s called Framboise Lambic Ale, a Belgian style fruit beer, made from fermented raspberries. So while the dudes around you may argue it’s not beer, you can direct them to the word, “beer” on the label, and then tell them to go to the grocery store and find it in the beer aisle. Because that’s exactly where it’s sold.

And if you're wondering what the alcohol by volume content is, that's a good question. It isn't on the label.

Photo courtesy of Chef Ray Christopher

I bought Mikey a beer recipe book a few weeks ago that have a number of recipes I’d like to try. If we ever get around to making a batch, a couple of them may just be good enough to add to this list. Until then, there’s always a new school of beers that rotate into the local grocery stores these days, so there really is something for everyone. The hubs and I have already been on an unofficial mission to try most all of them.

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