We asked all of you beer lovers/bloggers to reflect upon your growing relationship with beer, how it felt in '09, and what you want for your beer life in 2010. Thanks to all the beer writers out there who shared their best beers of '09, the brave bloggers who revealed their beer mistakes of the past year, and all who offered their hopes and dreams for the coming year of beer. We raise a glass to all of you. We look forward to taking our book tour to even more beer cities and hope to meet all of you over a local craft beer!
Here are the highlights of some of the best beer experiences you all had in '09:
Brad Petit @ La Petitie Brasserie looked back fondly on Ballast Point Sculpin, Founders KBS and Lost Abbey Duck Duck Gooze.
Alastair Reece @ Fuggled qualified a best beer as one that he wanted to drink over and over again, choosing the 'magnificent' Kout na Sumave 10 Golden Lager.
Peter Estaniel @ Better Beer Blog said that the hands down best was Sam Adams Utopia, exclaiming that, 'It is the most complex food product I have ever had the pleasure to put into my mouth.' (Props for use of the phrase 'food product').
Daniel Harper @ Endosymbiosis marks his visit to New Holland Brewery as a best of, their The Poet on cask getting his highest mark.
Thomas Vincent of Geistbear Brewing Blog loves his tasty local North Carolina Hefe, Lone Rider Shotgun Betty.
Stan Hieronymus @ Appellation Beer fell for the first vintage of The Abyss and fondly remembered 'Knocking back ounces of Southampton Cuvee Des Fleurs with Home Brew Chef Sean Paxton at GABF.'
Leigh Linley @ The Good Stuff found her heart beating rapidly for Flying Dog's Raging Bitch and confirmed the 'awesomeness' of Nogne-O's IPA.
We loved the pick from Derrick Peterman @ Bay Area Beer Runner who lauded the 'Best Beer That Makes Me Damn Proud to be Raised in the Midwest: "Blue Sky Rye" by Free State Brewing.'
As for beer mistakes and regrets, you've had a few....
Alistair Reece @ Fuggled made us laugh with graphic names for the usual suspects, 'Bud Light (Butt Wipe) and Pabst Blue Ribbon (Pap Smear)' while his worst craft beer was Ybor Gold Light, as he put it, '... if a worse beer in the US exists then thank goodness I am yet to try it.'
Beer Sagas confessed that their biggest beer mistake was not stocking up on Nøgne Ø's Christmas beer Special Holiday Ale
Brian Yaeger at Red, White, and Brew warns against the Sun Valley Brewing Co. (Hailey, ID) because, 'Spoilage is just about the worst offense ever.'
We were moved by Simon Johnson's lament @ Reluctant Scooper - 'My only regret is that it took me so long to understand just how important place, time and company are to beer enjoyment. For me, 2010 is going to be more about the context and less about the beer. But only just less :-)'
Nemsis @ BeerTaster.ca writes about 'the absolutely miserable yet mind bogglingly successful "Bud Light Lime". God awful stuff made for people who hate beer. Take an empty beer bottle, fill it with "Sprite" and you have the same taste. Here in Southern Ontario they couldn't keep the stuff in stock. I saw people driving away with pick-up trucks loaded with it. Makes me want to hang my head in shame."
Smitty @ Nashville Beer Geek made us do a spit take with his description of his worst '09; Bud Light Chelada, 'If Satan had a beer bar in hell, this would be on the menu.' (Hilarious!)
Here is our favorite embarrassing beer moment of 2009:
Peter Estaniel @ Better Beer Blog: 'My most embarrassing moment of 2009 happened during Halloween when I switched from beer to tequila and started to headbutt my buddy’s Spanish-style Conquistador costume. He fabricated his armor from some sheet metal he purchased, so I was literally headbutting armor as opposed to a plastic facsimile. I ended up passing out on a chaise lounge they had in their backyard by a firepit.'
And finally, what New Beer's Resolutions are on the table for the 2010? (Here's to hoping we all keep them!)
Jon Abernathy - The Brew Site - 'Stepping up the beer writing is going to be one of my big goals for this new year.' (For us too!)
Jay R. Brooks - Brookston Beer Bulletin - 'This is probably going to sound odd, but I think I’d like to drink more beer in 2010. As it is, I drink almost every day. - In 2010, I want to do this more. Just be out more, drinking with friends.' (We'll have more beer with you Jay!)
Daniel Harper @ Endosymbiosis wants to stop his beer hoarding and 'just drink the damned thing.' (We'll take some off your hands!)
Leigh Linley @ The Good Stuff will be honing her knowledge of Italian Craft Beer on her honeymoon in Italy in September (Congrats Leigh!)
Ally Shaw @ Impy Malting hopes her 'leap of faith' investing in BrewDog pays off in 2010. (That's putting your money where your beer is!)
Mark Dredge @ Pencil and Spoon will be on a quest to convert some lager or wine drinkers and host some beer tastings and dinners to 'tell people about the joys of great beer.'
Sean Inman @ Beer Search Party has a goal: 'To taste a beer from each and every state in the United States. I certainly hope there are beers from each 50 then I have to somehow get my hands on them.' (Call us when you're in Los Angeles, we'll help you!)
John @ The Beer Nut plans to see more of the UK in 2009, and 'London in particular. I plan to continue that in 2010 with Brighton and Cardiff already looking likely, and I really should do a proper beer tour of Belfast before the promotional rail offers end.' (Good on ya John.)
Mario @ Brewed For Thought hopes to not chase down beer so much in 2010, 'With so many big, wild, limited beers out there, it can be maddening (and expensive) trying to track them all down.' (Let's just hope that they all find you!)
Cynthia Trevino @ Beeranswers.com plans to 'Taste and cook with a wonderful new beer every week.' (We're on board with that!)
Lisa Morrison @ Hop Press says that in addition to the two beer books that she promises to finish (we want to read 'em Lisa!), that one of her New Beer's Resolutions is to "Continue to beat that drum with the message that that beer is as sophisticated a beverage as wine and is just as worthy of being served with respect at the finest restaurants. But can still hang with you on a random Saturday with friends, too." (Right on, Lisa!)
And off the beer topic...
Cheers to the New Year!!!!