You might think, isn’t beer tasting what I do every Friday night? Maybe, but not like this. In just seven simple steps, you can throw an imported beer tasting party that’ll be the talk of your social circle for years to come.
Friends that like beer are crucial to the success of a beer tasting. If you keep the group small — say, four to six people — party guests will feel more free to discuss each brew’s flavor profiles; doing so will also keep your hosting costs to a minimum. Don’t have many imported beer-drinking friends? Invite the open-minded; encourage them to try a few sips, and expand their horizons.
Develop cheesy (Beer goes great with cheese.) email invitations, or get really creative and make paper invitations shaped like beer steins.
Beer. You can’t have a beer tasting party without beer. You can go about choosing which beers are right for your party guests in many ways. Select a range of styles from one brewing company, or pick the same style offered by different brewers. However your prefer to decide which beers you will serve, purchase four to six varieties.
Use your home bar, your kitchen counter, or the coffee table. Display each bottle with the label facing outward, and set the stage with wide-mouthed sample glasses to ensure optimum flavor and aroma. Make sure you have enough regular-sized glasses on hand for party guests to enjoy a larger serving if they wish.
Imported beer should be tasted from lightest to heaviest. You might think this information can be determined based on color and opacity alone, but this isn’t true. Take the time to educate yourself on the hop and alcohol levels of each beer you chose; your guests will be impressed.
Depending on which beer you choose, some of your guests will be first-time tasters. Take just a few minutes and create a sheet for partygoers to rank taste, texture, finish, and head. Allow space for comments; guests might want to jot down what they liked and disliked, specifically, about each brew.
Party guests? Check. Beer? Check. Snacks? No check.
Pretzels, chips, raw vegetables, and/or dips will cleanse guests’ palates after each beer, can keep blood-alcohol content levels to a minimum, and will help eliminate hangovers that result from an indulgent evening.
Let your friends know, at the start of the evening, that your house is theirs for the evening. Collect car keys, and have the local cab company’s phone number handy just in case anyone cannot stay, and must leave.