The Session is a monthly event for the beer blogging community, which was started by Stan Hieronymus at Appellation Beer. On the first Friday of each month, all participating bloggers write about a predetermined topic. Each month a different blog is chosen to host The Session, choose the topic, and post a roundup of all the responses received. For more info on The Session, check out the Brookston Beer Bulletin’s archive page.
This month's Session is hosted by UK Beer Writer, Pete Brown. His chosen topic: the beer moment.
I was all ready and excited to join The Session for the first time this month because I love the concept and Pete's topic. Then...I forgot about it. The whirlwind stress of work life swept me away again. So, this post may lack the thoughtful consideration and communication I had hoped to offer when sharing interesting thoughts on the beer moment. Nevertheless, I've still jumped on-board and below is my rushed first contribution to this international beer writing endeavour...
The beer moment is peaceful, the beer moment is attentive, the beer moment is friendly.
Most of all, the beer moment is conversation on common ground.
The beer moment is quiet, calm, peaceful. At least, in your head it is. It's a moment of pure enjoyment where the noise (physical and psychological) of the surrounding world pales into insignificance. The peace does not always last long, but it is enough to install a strong longing for the day's first beer to capture the relief it will provide in that moment.
The beer moment is focused, specific, attentive. Distractions are diminished by the centering experience of the beer. As the beer pours from the tap to the glass, you become lost in a trance as your mind zones in on a specific need. Those distractions will return, but another beer will help knock them back a little further as the curious mind hones in on the history and craft of the beer in your hand. Where did this beer come from? Why is it so good? Should I have another or a different beer? How many have I had? Mmm beer.
The beer moment is social, insightful, friendly. The connection forged by drinking a beer together breaks through the toughest of social barriers, even past what beer each person is drinking. Those with you are genuinely interested in your thoughts about the beer...and all that flows from subsequent conversation. And in return you open yourself to the time they have to offer. You may not even know their name, but you can answer their questions and hear their opinion.
The beer moment is untouched by both the price paid for the beer, the prestige of the brand or the personal preference for the beer. As soon as a beer has been poured into a glass, all beer is on common ground because of the simple beauty that...it is beer. Some will like the beer, some will not, but it will drive conversation where no one is a lesser or a loser, but everyone has a right to their own voice. And that's where the real beer moment happens...in the precious words, few or many, that flows between equals who are all so different.
In the end the beer itself is the aspect of the moment that is rarely remembered. The conversation, friendship and understanding are the parts of the moment that live on. Cheers!
For a personal aside...the best practitioner of the beer moment that I know is Brad Merritt, who opened his own little beer bar in the hills so that his lifestyle could be the beer moment. Five night's a week Brad can chat over beer and does so with peaceful, attentive and friendly fashion. From there I write of my most recent beer moment experience...
I sit at the local bar, on a tall stool with a no-longer
full glass of beer at my finger tips, the noise of the room is lost to
the importance of allowing the beer to speak through its aroma,
character, mouthfeel, complexity and linger. The appearance of the beer captures my attention, every beer with its own unique aura. For a moment my eyes see nothing else than the beer in the glass, through its hue to its depth. Whilst my words may be few to those around me, they are ultimately about beer. The worries of the world give way in favour of a quiet conversation about beer...over beer. Peace.