My husband David has always been a wine lover. Never much of a beer drinker. We do keep a little beer in the garage in case guests ask for it, but not long ago we had to throw the stuff out. It was so old it had gone bad.
Then along came Andy, our English son-in-law who hails from the land of pints and pubs. Andy loves beer. The first few years of their marriage Maggy and Andy lived in England, and to earn a little money in grad school Maggy worked at her neighborhood pub. There’s not a tipping tradition in England, but appreciative customers would treat Maggy to the occasional pint. Over time she became quite a beer lover too.
I’m sure Sharon drank her share of bad beer in college, but with Berkshire Brewing Company in Deerfield, Mass just down the road, she also started to cultivate a taste for good beer. We were up to three beer connoisseurs in the family.
And now there’s Tony, our soon-to-be son-in-law—equal parts Irish and Italian—who grew up in Cleveland, home of Great Lakes Brewing Company. Tony’s so committed to good beer he’s working on the seemingly impossible logistics of getting kegs of Great Lake’s Christmas Ale shipped to Connecticut for the upcoming wedding. The addition of Tony makes it a solid majority of beer drinkers in our family.
Why, then, was I surprised, about a month or ago, when David declared himself a devotee of beer? We had friends for dinner two weeks in a row. While everyone else was sipping white wine, he was tipping a beer bottle!
David threw a pizza party for a church committee the other night. “There was a time,” David said, “when I would have bought the cheapest brand for a party like this, but now that I’m a beer drinker…”
A couple of days ago we were out on a little shopping spree. As we were getting in the car to head home David said, “Let’s go get a beer.” What fun, I thought. So we took a little detour to our local pub, Brave Heart, and ordered a couple of pints with a platter of Buffalo wings. As we swigged our beer, gnawed on wings, and watched a little sports TV, I thought how wonderfully out of character this was for us.
Last night Sharon and Tony came for dinner. David grabbed four beers from the fridge. While I held out for wine, beer is clearly seeping into my life. I’ve been cooking with it more–beer bread, beer cheese soup. I can see it coming. It’s just a matter of time before I go brew.