When we started this site, our biggest credo was “Stay thirsty, but stay different.” Because let’s face it, we are all different. And it’s not just a craft beer versus macro-adjunct thing. While we all share our common love of good craft beer, we have our differences. We all have our particular habits and idiosyncrasies. Some like bitter, some like sour, some like it malty or stout. Likewise, we all have a preference not only when it comes to the beer we drink, but when, where and with whom we drink it.
For instance, many of us in this neck of the woods would opt for a bar like Barcade, located in downtown Jersey City, NJ. There is easy access to the place from mass transit and it has a great selection of craft beer plus 1980s-era arcade games lined around the perimeter of the place to keep you feeling tipsy and yet excited and nostalgic all at once. Others would be more traditionalist and head to the great Iron Monkey – also downtown and easily reached by mass transit – for a multi-floor craft beer and food experience. Some of us who preferred more rare and exotic craft selections would head out of the city and into a more rural area for Vito Forte’s legendary Copper Mine Pub. I was able to try beers there that I couldn’t find anywhere else in the local area, let alone the better part of the state for that matter. The crowds were generally always friendly and often congregated with one another, forming a craft beer devotee contingent that has remained intact long after this fabled establishment closed its doors for good.
While all of these places have their die-hard patrons and repeat rainy day visitors, there are many of us who choose a different way of doing things. Some of us will organize bottle shares at a person’s house and convene there. Some will opt for a bar meet-up like the aforementioned places. Others simply want to sit at home and enjoy a beer while watching the TV after work or while brewing up their next batch of home brewed goodness. Whether you are a social butterfly or a homebody, we all have this one thing bonding us together – great beer.
So what’s your favorite drinking spot? For me, I’m happy just sitting on my couch watching TV shows or movies or in front of the computer while I write. (Side note – a beer is being consumed as this is being typed, obviously) However, I do find it fun and refreshing to venture out into those other areas where I can get a flight of various beers and sit down with friends, enjoy our beers while comparing tasting notes and of course, to check in on Untappd or post to my Instagram, Twitter or Facebook accounts. Bottle shares are also great for that, plus you’ve already bought all the beer you’re going to drink. Planning ahead is half the battle.
Wherever it is that you feel most comfortable with a cold malty beverage in your hand, that’s your spot and you should feel comfortable in it. But it never hurts to go out and try new places. It especially helps when you’re with friends. And who knows? You just might run into a brew crew who regularly frequent the place and are willing to be inclusive and do the group thing with you. Cheers…