The Descriptors of a Good Beer

Beer has been around for thousands of years. It was consumed by ancient farmers as they worked to build the first agrarian civilizations, Egyptian workers as they toiled along the Nile river and is thought by experts to have played an important role in the development of civilization itself. Beer is made up of four main ingredients: water, grain, hops and yeast. It is one of the most widely consumed alcoholic beverages in the world and it can be enjoyed alone or shared with friends.

Beer comes in a wide variety of flavors and styles. It can be bitter or sweet, fruity or smoky. There are pale lagers, dark stouts and everything in between. The flavors of the beer come from a combination of the malt, the hops and the type of yeast used in the brewing process.

The aroma of the beer is also a result of the combination of ingredients used in the brewing process. The yeast produces a number of different fermentation by-products that can create aromas ranging from grassy to citrusy. The type of malt used and the kilning process will also impact the flavor and aroma of the beer. Lightly toasted malts produce lighter colored beers while darker roasted malts provide the richer colors and flavors seen in stouts and porters.

After the aroma and flavor are considered, the mouthfeel of the beer is next on the list of descriptors to consider. The beer can feel thick and creamy or it may have a thin, watery texture. The beer might leave a lingering taste of sweetness or bitterness and the aftertaste can be left feeling tingly or warm.