In which I hope to survive this column's publishing.
Most beer is best when it is as fresh as possible. The ability to buy beer at the source of its manufacture has completely changed how Americans interact with their brew, and it's given brewers the chance to utilize ingredients with increasing fragility of flavor. The concept is not a new one, really. In order to ensure quality, macrobrewers have spent untold dollars figuring out how long their beer lasts under different conditions, and have been printing Born On dates on their cans for well over a decade. On the other end, small brewer whale-chasers have approached a lunatic fringe in threatening to pour their own IPAs down the drain should they have been bottled and sold in more than the space of a workday.
For the next few weeks in this space I'll be attempting to find out how long certain beers can be cellared like fine wines. What happens to them? How do they change, and what's it like to drink them? I'll be trying beers from several brewers; some which have been made specifically to drink after resting, but most decidedly not.