We use language to communicate to others what we experience, think and feel. Becoming a Hopsonomist means learning the language of craft beer. Craft beer styles provide a structure for what makes every beer the same or different. Beer classification is based on characteristics we use to describe things like flavor, aroma, color, bitterness and alcohol percentage. Beers with similar characteristics go into groups we can reference in order to anticipate, assume, and comprehend what each craft beer might look, feel, and taste like before we even try it.
Sure, you could list every beer characteristic on a label or menu without giving it a style designation, but that becomes a guessing game. Using words like stout, pale ale, and pilsner are universally accepted beer classifications that help us comprehend the information we’re looking for. Whether you’re having a conversation with friends or serving guests at a bar, brevity is invaluable. It’s easier to establish what type of beer it is first, then describe the characteristics of each individual beer in finer detail. Inevitably, you’ll encounter beers that are truly unique and lack a clear definition. That’s when we use our beer language skills to describe each beer like a true Hopsonomist.
Think of craft beer styles like a color wheel. Colors across from one another are quite different, while colors next to each other share striking similarities. Either way, they’re all colors. Hopsonomy Beer Styles 101 courses are designed to teach you what makes each beer both the same and different to something else. In each course, we’ll provide an overview of what defines each style, as well as examples of specific types of beer brands to show you what makes each beer truly unique.