Not Another Can vs. Bottle Debate

Do you remember collecting baseball cards?

I absolutely loved it. When my friends and I were lucky enough to find a quarter or two, we would run to the Seven Eleven and grab one or two packs of TOPPS baseball cards, tear open the wrapper, pop in the powdery brittle gum, and shuffle through the pack to see what favorite big leaguers we could find.

I loved turning the card over and skimming the back for some cool stats.  I had a thing for numbers; we all did. Who had the highest average? The most home runs? The lowest ERA? What team won the most World Series? Who had the most baseball cards? I lost that one every time. This stuff really mattered to us.

I still get a kick out of numbers but I don’t take them as seriously as I once did.

These days, instead of baseball cards, I am reading beer blog posts. One of the most covered topics that keeps popping up is the can vs. bottle debate and frankly I am over it. I have finally embraced the fact that canned beer is here to stay and more breweries will continue to add cans to their lineup.

Back to Craft Beer in a can.

Instead of covering the same ole can vs. bottle benefits and whether or not canned beer tastes as good as bottled, I have decided to conduct my own experiment.

When I first started drinking craft beer, (we called it microbrew) I loved the fact that it was exclusive to bottles. I felt like I was in a special club. We thought craft beer was too good for cans. Wine didn’t come in a can.

The question for me is this: Drink from the can or from a glass? I’m not sure so I decided to conduct a little, not so serious experiment of my own.  Another excuse to have a taste test!

I went West Coast with this one. The first was Hazed and Confused, an IPA from Boulder Beer.

The pine notes from the aroma were just a bit more intense in the can than from the glass. I choose to ignore the fact that I probably looked like a moron sniffing a can.  It’s all in the name of science! I did get a mild metallic taste from my mouth touching the can. No big deal though. Other than that, the can and glass were pretty even. The one thing I liked was that on a hot summer day the canned beer stayed cooler longer.

The second one was Brew Free or Die IPA from 21st Amendment. Pretty much the same thing. Since this beer was more balanced and the hop aroma was not as complex as Hazed and Confused, I found that drinking from the can was pretty much identical to drinking it from the glass. The only difference is that the can stays colder longer and thus it appears more bitter until it warms up.

What is the verdict?

Frankly, it’s not worth the fuss. My first choice would be from a glass. However, if we are at a backyard BBQ on a hot summer day, drinking from a can will do just fine. I would rather have a glass with higher gravity beers because I have a tendency to over quaff from a can (beer hits the center and back of tongue first). I also like to see the color of my beer but that is not much different from drinking straight from a bottle, is it?

It all boils down to this: It depends on the time of year, the weather, the mood, the food, the availability, etc. In other words, don’t worry about it and just drink from the can, man.

Let me know what you think about can beers and don’t forget to subscribe to Crafty and the Beast and follow us on twitter


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