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5 Beerble-approved tips when ordering at a craft beer bar

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1 Mar

5 Beerble-approved tips when ordering at a craft beer bar

By: Ng U-Sern and Mili Lim 

ESTIMATED READING TIME: 1 minute 

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“If you’ve walked into any of the craft beer outlets lately and have been confused by the sheer number of different beers, brands and beer styles, don’t fret – you are not alone.”

– Mili Lim, one of five cousins who own Taps Beer Bar

 

It is not unusual for a Malaysian to walk into a beer bar with a predisposition to order a commercialised ‘big beer’ brand whether it be Carlsberg, Heineken, Guinness or others. 

 

One may attribute the big brewers’ dominating brand awareness to, inter alia, the mass accessibility of their beers, big budgeted marketing campaigns, and the limit to issuances of brewing licences in Malaysia.

 

With the rise of craft beer in Malaysia, however, ordering beer is now more exciting with the wide variety of unique beers available. 

 

Don’t get overwhelmed by choice at a craft beer bar with 5 Beerble-approved tips

 

 

1. REFRAME THE WAY YOU ASK THE BEER-ISTA FOR A RECOMMENDATION

 

 

Beer-istas can’t read minds. It’s difficult to recommend a beer without first knowing your taste preference. Instead of only asking,”What beers would you recommend?”, try reframing your question: 

(i) “I like something [insert taste profile – fruity / chocolatey / etc]. What selection of beers do you have that fits that?” 

(ii) “What are your new beers this week?”

(iii) “I’m new to craft beer. What’s a good starter beer?”

 

 

2. SAMPLE, IF POSSIBLE

 

 

Some craft beer bars let you sample their beers on tap before buying! 

 

 

3. SOME BASIC TASTING TERMS AND BEER STYLES

 

 

Clean, bready, crisp: Lager

Fruity/floral, aromatic, hoppy: IPA, Pale Ale

Malty sweetness, citrusy, tangy: Wheat Beer, White Ale

Malty sweetness, caramel notes: Amber Ale, Brown Ale

Chocolatey, coffeeish, robust: Stout, Porter

Acidic, sour, fruity, complex: Sour Ales

Smokey, malty, toasty: Rauchbier

 

 

4. BEER STYLES ARE A GOOD INITIAL INDICATOR OF WHAT TO EXPECT, BUT THEY ARE PRETTY SUBJECTIVE

 

 

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Alvin Lim, one of five cousins who own Taps Beer Bar, draws an analogy:

“There are 2 ‘nasi lemak’ stalls  beside each other. I may prefer the ‘sambal’ from the left stall because its more spicy whereas you may prefer the ‘sambal’ from the right stall because its spicy and sweet. Both fall in the same food category but personal preference is subjective. Similarly, I may prefer this Stout over that Stout.” 

 

Takeaway: Use beer styles as general indicators of what beer you may like, but don’t do it at the expense of not exploring other styles. 

 

 

5. CRAFT BEER: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY

 

 

Be unafraid to explore something new. Unsure where to start? Refer to Point number 1. 

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