A Good Beer Blog


Have you read The Unbearable Nonsense of Craft Beer - A Rant in Nine Acts by Alan and Max yet? It's out on Kindle as well as Lulu.

Maureen Ogle said this about the book: "... immensely readable, sometimes slightly surreal rumination on beer in general and craft beer in particular. Funny, witty, but most important: Smart. The beer geeks will likely get all cranky about it, but Alan and Max are the masters of cranky..."

Ron Pattinson said: "I'm in a rather odd situation. Because I appear in the book. A fictional version of me. It's a weird feeling."


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Craig Stacey -

While I see your point, let me raise a counter. One of the nice things about going to a pub, for me, is that I know it's a place I can go where I'm assured not to be surrounded by children. Just about any restaurant I go to these days is subject to unsupervised and misbehaved children running rampant, and it gets a little old for me. I like that I can have a favorite watering hole that's an adults only spot.

Saying this, I'm forced to point out that my favorite spot right now does allow children, since it's technically a restaurant. It hasn't stopped me from going, but the kids tend not to be loud or unruly. Would that it was more common...

Alan -

That is a good point. I have been maniacal in return in my imposition of "restaurant manners" in our family. That is the highest standard. Unsupervised children are a nightmare and now the object of our kids disgust.

Boak -

Very interesting question for us Brits. I'm childless but don't really object to children running around (even if they are a bit noisy) - but I'm quite unusual in this in Britain, where the standard thing to do is to tut loudly. As a result, families often don't feel comfortable coming out with the kids. It's changed a lot towards child tolerance in the last twenty years (I still remember being banished outside the pub with a packet of crisps aged five!) but we're along way behind the rest of Europe.

In Spain, it's common to see kids out at 11 o clock at night, running around pavement cafes. That's the extreme, but I've never been anywhere else in Europe where people with kids are made to feel so unwelcome (in our polite British way, of course!)

PS Your "are you human" test on your comments page is way too hard. I keep failing.

Chapka -

My family spends a lot of time in brewpubs on the East Coast, and I have yet to see one that doesn't allow kids--many even have kids' menus. The good beer bars around here usually have pretty good food as well, and it's not unusual to see them full of strollers. And even in Pennsylvania, home of some of the most backwards liquor laws in the country, all of the brewpubs have kids' menus and highchairs.

As for letting your kids drink at home...I think it's a fine idea and wish it was legal in this state. I'd much rather my kids learned about responsible alcohol consumption at home, and learned to appreciate drinking as something other than what they're going to encounter at college. Remember, we're not talking about slipping bourbon in a baby bottle here: In Pennsylvania, if I let my 20-year-old child have a taste of my homebrew when he's visiting from college, I can go to jail for a year. For that matter, if I give him a non-alcoholic beer, I can go to jail for 90 days. A non-alcoholic beer!

me -

It would be wonderful thing if freakin yuppies left their brats at home so I can belch and swear in peace.

Wilson -

I think it's important for parents to take their kids to the pub. They need to train them to behave there (and everywhere). Parents need to de-taboo things like alcohol and bars. They need to model responsible behavior or they can expect exceedingly irresponsible behavior down the road. Akin to potty training, a little effort now saves us from wiping a teenager's butt in the future. It's frustrating that more parents don't do their job. There are many issues as important as potty training. It impacts us all. I don't mind a little noise in a bar, but I do mind it in line at the grocery store.

As you might expect, I take my two boys to the pub. I'd rather teach my kids about things like this than leave it to teachers, peers and other knobs within the community. I need to serve as a ballast for skewed views. As for the bar, we're more likely to show up in the afternoon after a hike, or for lunch, so belching, swearing, excessive smoke and adults acting like children aren't such issues. But if they are, I view it as a teaching opportunity.

Like Alan, I view beer as, if not a part of my family, part of what makes my family what it is.

I appreciate very much one family dinner long ago when my Gramps offered me a glass of wine. I didn't much care for it. But I later learned that I did much care for beer. And I care so much that I'm going to teach my kids about it (because I also care so much for them).

Jessica -

I think, a pub isn't a good place for a kid. My opinion, if you are going to a pub - leave your child at home. Think of your children, do you think they have a lot of fun watching their parents drinking beer? I guess, no...