Beer Education Guide

Beer has been around for ages – and it doesn’t look like it’s going anywhere. Currently, beer is the most popular alcoholic beverage. And it comes in third among nonalcoholic ones. From crude, ancient beginnings, beer has evolved to include a huge range of styles, strengths and flavors. This guide is packed with some 40 beer-related resources, including resources on the history of beer, beer tasting and food pairing, homebrewing and more.


General Beer Resources

This section of general resources can help you learn how much beer is too much to drink, clue you in to appealing beers for wine drinkers, fill you in on the history of beer and keep you updated on the latest industry news.

Beer and American History – If you’re interested in the beginnings of beer, check out this site that’s full of American history.

Brewing in Colonial America – Enjoy beer historian Gregg Smith’s four-part article on how beer was brewed in Colonial America.

Brewery Collectibles Club of America – The BCCA has been around since 1970, and it’s still going strong. Visit its website to get the latest industry news, search classifieds or shop for beer apparel and accessories.

Beer Business Daily – This publication is read by everyone with an interest in beer — from brewery executives to craft brewers. You’ll find daily news from a political and strategic perspective and the latest ideas in the industry.

Estimated Blood Alcohol Content Calculator – Part of enjoying beer is enjoying it responsibly. To make sure you do, check out this resource.

Master Brewers Association of the Americas – Earn an Associate Beer Steward Certification or a Master Beer Steward Certification through this organization established in 1887.

5 Sommelier Approved Beers for Wine Enthusiasts – Even if you are a loyal wine drinker, why not change it up and try a beer? Take a look at these 5 beers that were handpicked for wine drinkers.


Beer Resources for Beginners

If you know little more than the names of basic domestic and imported beer brands, this section is for you. Here you can discover beginner’s information involving beer terms, beer styles and beer brands as well as information on buying, pouring and tasting beer.

A Beginner’s Guide to “Nice” Beer – If you never know what to order or you always order the same American beer, check out this guide that will help you make more interesting choices.

Beer for Dummies Cheat Sheet – This cheat sheet provides information on beer vocabulary, beer styles and beer brands. You’ll also discover tips for buying, serving and tasting beer.

How to Pour Beer – If at any point you decide to drink beer from a glass, you need to know how to properly pour it. Find out how.

Beer Glossary – This glossary covers common beer and brewing terms. Never again will you be stumped by terms such as gruit or grist.


Beer Tasting and Evaluating Resources

If you’re a true beer aficionado — or you aspire to be one —take advantage of the following resources to learn how to properly taste and evaluate beer.

Beer Tasting Sheet – This free sheet from Craft gives the opportunity to make notes about the craft beers you taste, which, in turn, can help you understand each beer’s quality.

Beer Flavor Wheel – This wheel is designed to serve as a helpful resource when tasting and evaluating different styles and flavors of beer.

Evaluating Beer: Tips From the Pros – If you’re into making your own homebrew and competing with it, these tips could save you from a fatal flaw.

The 7-Step Method to Tasting Beer Like a Pro – If you want to know how the pros taste beer, check out this detailed article that gives you the information you need step by step.


Styles of Beer Resources

Although there are two types of beers — ales or lagers — styles of beer number into the dozens. If you’re so inclined, you can learn everything there is to know about each one. If you’re not that into details, browse the following resources to glean the basics.

Beer Styles – Learn everything you ever wanted to know about 79 different styles of beer — from American Amber Ale to Vienna-Style Lager.

Brewers Association Beer Style Guidelines – A helpful resource for individuals or organizations that desire detailed information on the various beer styles available.

Beer Styles Study Guide – If you’re serious about learning in-depth information about beer styles, download the PDF version of the guide.

Three Millennia of Beer Styles in Four Minutes and 32 Seconds – This article gives the reader a quick rundown of the different beer styles that have appeared over thousands of years.


Home Brewing Resources

 Whether you’re a seasoned home brewer with cases of brews under your belt or you’re just breaking into this popular hobby, you’ll find something worthwhile here.

Home Brewer’s Association – You can join the association for a membership fee or you can take advantage of their free resources such as homebrew recipes and how-tos for all levels of homebrewers.

Brew Real Beer – Learn the basics of home brewing in this free course led by Ted Esler, which includes an hour and a half of theory and demonstration.

Home Brewing Recipes – Each recipe includes a list of ingredients, a breakdown of style and a place for ratings and discussions.

Brewer’s Friend – Whether you’re a beginning or more advanced brewer, Brewer’s Friend is the ultimate toolbox. It offers a free trial membership, which allows you to create and share up to five recipes and gain access to the forums.

Ask the BrewMaster – If you have a brewing question, check out the archives. If the answer isn’t there, you can ask the brewmaster and receive a personal response.


Beer and Food Pairing Resources

Just like wine, certain styles of beer pair better with certain foods and these resources will help you learn what’s what. First, learn the foundational principles of beer and food pairing and then move on to implementing what you’ve learned.

The Three Foundational Principles of Beer and Food Pairing – This article examines the three foundational principles to help you become better at beer and food pairing: balancing the weights, comparing and contrasting the components and bridging the flavors.

Beer and Food Pairing Guide – This guide explains the different flavors in beer, gives guidelines for pairing beer and food and offers food suggestions for specific beer styles.

Craft Beer and Food Pairing Guide – Check out this infographic that details food components, beer flavors, interactions and example dishes to help you expertly pair different craft beers with food.

Beer and Food Pairing Worksheet – If you’re interested in a more technical approach to beer and food pairing, download and print this worksheet developed by the Brewer’s Association.


Beer Podcast Resources

This selection of beer-related podcasts will entertain you at the very least. Whether you’re interested in the best-tasting brews out there or you’re trying to break into the world of home brewing, there’s something here for you.

Basic Brewing Radio – If you’re into home brewing, this is your podcast pick. Tune in to hear compelling interviews with people who are well versed in home brewing.

Good Beer Hunting – Join host Michael Kiser for the best in interviews with brewers, connoisseurs and those who enjoy craft beer.

Steal This Beer – This unique podcast has hosts Augie Carton and John Holl pitting two beers against each other in blind taste tests each episode. They also include current beer news and other related topics.

Beer Download – If you like tournament style competition when it comes to beer tasting, look no further than this podcast.


Beer Blog Resources

Think of these blogs as your own personal news and education resources related to beer. Even if you just check them out once and never come back, you’re likely to learn something worthwhile.

Beer History – Here you’ll find the history of American beer, brewing and breweries as well as a library, gallery and bookstore.

The Hop Review – Based on the Chicago craft scene, this blog runs on interviews, industry news and beer talk.

Don’t Drink Beer – Created by Alex Kidd, this blog is based on high-quality reviews of the world’s best beers. You won’t find boring content here. Be prepared for satire and wit.

Pints and Panels – Em Sauter, the creator of Pints and Panels, creates her content in the form of cartoons. But it’s not fluff; it’s actually educational.


Beer App Resources

Although there are plenty of beer apps out there, some are much better than others. We’ve discovered the cream of the crop below.

UnTappd – Find your favorite beers near you and then rate and share them with friends on this top-rated beer app.

BJCP Styles – This app can quickly give you the details on almost any style of beer. Best of all, it’s free.

Beer Menus – Find out where you can buy the beer brands you want to take home, and browse the beer menus at various bars and restaurants.

Beer Citizen – Discover, review and share the beer you drink. As more and more users review a particular beer, the beer develops a collective profile.