Never in the long history of drinking have beer lovers had it so good, with a brewing renaissance happening around the globe. And never before have beer lovers who also have a thirst for knowledge had it so good–The Beer Bible is a lively, comprehensive, authoritative, and purely fun-to-read guide to beer in all its glory. The Beer Bible celebrates the pleasure of discovery, for readers new to beer, and the pleasure of connoisseurship, for old hands ever eager for more information. It’s a book built on the premise that the best way to learn about beer isn’t by trying every one out there, but instead pouring your favorite and studying it. That’s what opens the doorway to history, culture, and craft, the influences that make each style of beer unique.
Like bitter, for example. Its origins in the twin discoveries of hops as a spicing agent and modern kilning, which allowed for straw-colored malts. How it took several more centuries to displace the great porter epoch. The influence of mineral-rich Burton water. The Zen simplicity of how bitter is brewed. The quality called “moreish”–a distinctly British adjective extolling the virtue of being pleasant over the course of a full evening at the pub. And the fact that it really needs to be drunk straight from the tap or cask.
To top it off, Jeff Alworth’s ever-engaging style: “British bitters are characterized by a definite hop presence, but they have no violence in them. The hops ride atop a gentle biscuit sweetness and add marmalade and spice.” And so it goes for bocks and lambics, schwarzbiers and Vienna lagers, saisons and Pilsners, weisses, weizens, and witbiers.
Welcome to beer heaven.