Craft Beer Guide: Know Your Beer Geeks

Suds lovers come in many guises, from PBR-swilling hipsters to obscurity-obsessed connoisseurs.

Hipster Swillers

Beer of choice: Their bicycles may cost a
month’s rent, but when it comes to beer, it’s Pabst Blue Ribbon and
Schlitz all the way.

Frequently seen: Drinking Miller High Life at
American Ice Co.

Show disdain for: Everything, but pricey craft
bottles in particular.

Homebrew Crew

Beer of choice: What-ever concoction they’ve
most recently brewed in the basement.

Frequently seen: At monthly homebrew-club
meetings and Meridian Pint’s homebrewing competitions.

Must-have accessory: A jerry-rigged kegerator
for pulling drafts at home.

Belgian Buffs

Beer of choice: Any-thing Belgian, preferably
a super-rare monastery beer or a high-gravity quadrupel.

Frequently seen: Quaffing a Chimay Cinq Cents
alongside moules frites at Brasserie Beck.

Role models: Trappist-monk
brewers.

Hopheads

Beer of choice: Aggressively hoppy, bitter
IPAs such as Sierra Nevada Hoptimum.

Frequently seen: At
Pizzeria Paradiso’s annual JulyPA, when drafts at all three locations are
IPAs throughout the month of July.

Random knowledge: The
Humulus lupulus plant, from which hops are derived, is in the
same family as cannabis.

Sour Scenesters

Beer of choice: Tart brews made with wild
yeast or bacteria, such as Belgian lambic or, locally, B.W. Rye #4 Gose
from 3 Stars and Oliver Brewery.

Frequently seen: Puckering up at one of the
sour-beer takeover nights at Meridian Pint in DC’s Columbia
Heights.

Mecca: Where the Wild Beers Are, an annual
sour-beer festival for the “bacti-curious.”

Locavores

Beer of choice: Fresh ales and lagers brewed
within a 50-mile radius of Washington.

Frequently seen: Toting a well-worn growler
bag to refill at DC’s Chocolate City Beer—or road-tripping to Frederick’s
Flying Dog Brewery.

Go-to accessory: A three-star tattoo inspired
by the District of Columbia flag (and by DC Brau cans).

Illustrations by Ryan Snook.

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Anna Spiegel
Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.