I am getting a wee bit tired of "tasting" beer. It is getting all too twee. This article in a Toronto rag of some sort or another displays everything that is wrong with the media's new relationship with beer and the concurrent looming over-preciousness of beer appreciation... or the over-wrought appreciation of anything for that matter:
Though it’s hard to imagine diners sniffing and swirling a pint of amber at Canoe, Duizer assures us that these steps are essential to developing the full experience required for successful pairing. When considering a taste combination, Duizer urges judiciousness. “Be analytical,” she says. “We don’t care if you like it or not.” She encourages drinkers to exhale after sipping in order to pick up the scent of complex flavours. For a glass just poured, listen for carbonation to learn about effervescence levels. When pairing, pay attention to temperature and timing, because both affect taste.
Do me a favour, then. Next time you make a ham sandwich, listen to your mustard. Sense its silence. Its quiet passion. The mustard's pain and joy. Feel stupid? You should.
“We don’t care if you like it or not”?!? As if beer can be separated form its consumption, its very destruction by you. The "don’t care if you like it" theory removes you from the equation. It is, in fact, un-you and really anti-you. The beer is objectified and you are negated to make this useful. This is a lie. The beer needs you. It wants you to create the one-seat two or twenty minute theater of taste. It wants you to love it. You should. Don't taste it. Love it.