How To Look Like A Craft Beer Expert When All You Drink Is Bud Light

by Christina Straub

I remember back to my high school days when I had my first sip of beer. (Sorry, Mom.) I vowed to never drink a sip a beer ever again thanks to the bittersweet taste it left in my mouth. Fast-forward 15 years later, and beer is my alcoholic beverage of choice. My friends will tell you I'm the gal who has shown up to a BYOB with a few beers in my purse instead of a bottle of wine.

Most people do not believe me when I tell them I prefer beer over wine and liquor, but it's the truth. In my mind, it is so much more flavorful, and there are endless options to choose from at your local bar. Plus, it goes great with a hamburger and a side of fries.

Knowing that I enjoy beer is one of the only things I really know about this beverage. Unlike some of my friends who are very knowledgable on wine, I have not taken the time to learn more about beer and the different varieties. I am by no means an expert in craft beers, and I cannot tell you where most beers are produced.

However, it's important to have a few helpful tricks up my sleeve when ordering a beverage at the bar. This way, I not only look like I know what I am doing, but I may impress a date or two in the process. Here are four tips to look like you know your stuff when ordering a beer:

1. Have a go-to beer.

Without a doubt, I have two beers that I always can rely on: Yards Pale Ale and Hefeweizen. Nine times out of 10, the bar or restaurant I'm be at will have them on its menu. What if you end up at an establishment that does not carry your go-to beverage? Ask for it anyway.

This way, when the bartender tells you the place doesn't carry that beer, ask for his or her opinion on what you should order instead. This lets the bartender know what type of beer you are interested so he or she can bring you something you are guaranteed to enjoy.

2. Follow your friends.

There have been times when I am out to happy hour with friends, and I haven't heard of the drinks they are ordering. If it's a close group, ask to try a sip of your friend's beverage. If you're not that close with the people you are out with, then just follow along.

Chances are, you are spending time with these people because you have something in common or have similar tastes. Order what they are drinking and try something new. The worst that could happen is you might not enjoy your beverage as much as you thought.

3. Try a beer flight.

Most bars and restaurants that have a large beer menu offer a beer flight. This is a great way to try something new and to look like you are interested in learning more about the different types of beverages that an establishment offers. You never know when you may find your new favorite in a flight of beer.

4. Ask your date.

Similar to having a go-to beer, it's always great to get the opinion of someone else. Let's say you're out on a date and you cannot find anything on the menu you think you might enjoy. Ask your date for his or her opinion.

Let him or her know what you usually drink, and ask if your date can recommend something similar that you might enjoy. This shows you have some knowledge on beer, and it gives your date the opportunity to impress you with his or her knowledge.