The Evolution of Simply Beer, Reviews to Opinions to Experiences
I had a post today from James at beerepiphany.wordpress.com that got me thinking; now that I’ve passed two years writing about beer on Simply Beer, “how has my blog evolved”. Flash back to September 2008, I acquired the domain SimplyBeer.com and got right to work reviewing beers and writing about homebrewing. While the homebrewing part has not really changed much because it is much more empirical then reviews and it is what it is, the beer reviews quickly began to weigh heavily on me.
As I was reviewing beer, writing my reviews in a can structured format, and assigning a number grade to each beer, I was caught up in a couple dilemmas. My first dilemma, If I loved a style of beer that was getting lower marks then a style a didn’t like as much, but I would prefer to drink the lower scoring beer in the style I like better over the higher scoring beer in the less liked style. Why? I was following BJCP guidelines. That quickly came to an end and stop grading on the guidelines. Which brought me to my second conundrum, would I want people arbitrarily assigning grades to my beer? Further more, my aspirations in the beer world is to be a brewer, not a critic or journalist. At that point I stopped giving grades to beer and just gave my opinions.
That lasted for about a year, no grades, but my opinions were lacking something, personality and uniqueness. I am who I am, I’m not a gifted wordsmith and have a hard time assembling two sentences in a row that make sense. The canned opinions, while easy to read and informative, was not what I wanted to portray on SimplyBeer. So they were replaced with just my drinking experience. Sometimes my thoughts may have much to do with the beer, just that it is complementing my mood and is enjoyable.
So here we are today. I needed something new to regain my interest in writing, when my wife suggested we try to find her beer that she likes, we both though what a great concept to write about on Simply Beer. Now we have this great new series, 3 months 10 beers, when I’m charged to find my wife 10 beers that she can drink and enjoy.
As far as the reviews go now a days, I don’t open a beer to write a review. I write a review when the beer inspires me to write about it.
It’s like our grandmothers told us, “If you don’t have something positive to say, don’t say anything at all!”. This is now what I want Simply Beer to be a place of positive beer experiences.