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Tasting Beer: An Insider's Guide to the World's Greatest Drink

4.25  ·  Rating details ·  2,215 ratings  ·  162 reviews
Everyone knows how to drink beer, but few know how to really taste it with an understanding of the finer points of brewing, serving, and food pairing. Discover the ingredients and brewing methods that make each variety unique and learn to identify the scents, colors, flavors, and mouthfeel of all the major beer styles. Recommendations for more than 50 types of beer from ar ...more
Paperback, 247 pages
Published February 11th 2009 by Storey Publishing, LLC (first published 2009)
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Average rating 4.25  · 
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 ·  2,215 ratings  ·  162 reviews

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Oct 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
This book made me really thirsty. Seriously -- it took me over a month to read it, because I couldn't sit down with it without a glass of beer to keep me company. It's impossible to read the lush descriptions of malt and hops without sipping along on something with those flavors.

I learned a lot from this book. I now know why I hate IPAs and why I love nut brown ales. I want to make myself a Black Velvet (a cocktail that's half stout and half champagne). I want to try practically every style ment
May 06, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
If asked "why do you like beer so much," it would be difficult to find a better answer than "read Tasting Beer and you'll figure it out." Mosher is well-known in the world of beer geekery and homebrewing, with years of experience under his belt, and this book clearly demonstrates his knowledge and passion for brew.

Everything about the book is extremely enjoyable. While many experts and aficionados talk about their topics of interest in a way that makes them seem elitist or holier-than-thou, Mosh
Sep 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2022, brewing, 2017
Since I started homebrewing a couple of years ago, I've read almost two dozen books on beer and brewing, and I'd estimate about a hundred blog posts and articles. Few of those have been anywhere near as delightful as Randy Mosher's Tasting Beer. Mosher's love of this agricultural/culinary art form is manifest in every word and every figure of this book. He lovingly describes each style in visceral, sensuous detail. He illuminates the history of beer and beer-making (even the boring taxation aspe ...more
Zuzka Jakubkova
Mar 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Excellent guide on beer for both novices and pros. Personally, I loved the chapters on context of beer brewing in history and chapters describing in detail ales, IPAs, etc.

Even though I'm not a beer pro in any way, I was very happy to discover a world after the ever present pilsners. It's just like with specialty coffee, the whole concept of finer (or just different) tastes seems extremely snobish at first. In reality, it's just finding your way around a variety of craft beers and learning what
Emily Horsmann
Mar 19, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I've been reading this book for about 9 months now and was finally able to get through it. I read this book to help me prepare for the Certified Beer Server exam which I have now passed. Mosher is a household name in the beer world. Definitely a book to read if you're looking to learn more about the beer and the history of it. ...more
Aug 23, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Very helpful for a relatively new craft beer drinker. Looking forward to continuing my beer journey.
Sep 22, 2011 rated it liked it
I had a little trouble rating this. While it is interesting, I found it difficult to get through quickly. Part of that may be the way it is organized and all the distracting, but interesting, little sidebars, in the book. To me, it is more of a reference work and I've tabbed a number of pages that I know I will want to go back to at some future point. He provides a lot of historical information about the development of beer, indeed he is not alone in declaring it, along with bread, as the food t ...more
Jason Pettus
Feb 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I decided to lump both Randy Mosher's Tasting Beer and Joshua Bernstein's The Complete Beer Course into one communal review and post it twice, because both books turn out to cover almost exactly the same ground and are of almost exactly the same quality. That quality is great, though, don't get me wrong, in both cases exhausting looks at the process by which beer is actually made, followed up by a detailed examination of roughly 100 different types of beer around the world, and what makes each o ...more
May 16, 2020 rated it really liked it
Bit of a conundrum: there are large parts of this book which are very hard to take in because of the technical complexity of the processes they describe; there are other parts I'm not really all that interested in (eg the procedures that are followed in judging beer competitions); and even in the remaining more straight-forward parts, covering history or describing beer styles there is a lot of repetition. Yet nonetheless I found this a really admirable book, and one I am bound to return to.

Bert Heymans
Apr 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Very comprehensive and fun to read. You'll learn a lot. The parts about Belgian beers are all very correct as far as I can tell. I even got the audio version on Audible, still very enjoyable given the amount of lists in the book. The narrator has a hard time with the pronunciation of everything in Dutch, German and French (hard to decipher and a bit funny too at times). ...more
Mar 12, 2018 marked it as did-not-finish
Not enough info I didn't know to keep reading... ...more
Eli Hornyak
May 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A must read if you truly love beer!
Michal Ján Sallem
Jan 03, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Great intro to the world of craft beer
Dec 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audible, nonfiction
There. I read a book for work!
Jul 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
There is a lot of knowledge in the book, but is it well written and fun to read. Chapters about tasting and history are fantastic and very insightful. Parts about food paring and beer examples are written in a US-centric way, but apart from this the book is well suited for an European reader as well, as metric units are provided in nearly all cases. A must-read for a beer geek.
May 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed
Having had my fill of epic fantasy and philosophy for the time being, I decided it was time for something completely different: beer. Randy Mosher’s Tasting Beer is a detailed instruction manual for becoming not only a learned taster of beer, but a serious professional. Mosher’s expertise is well-represented in this book, but his style is simple and flowing, making it easy for even a novice to understand and appreciate his wisdom. His work exudes passion, not pretentiousness, making it an enjoya ...more
Derek Wolfgram
Nov 29, 2010 rated it really liked it
bought this after hearing Randy Mosher speak at the American Homebrewers Association Conference in Oakland... he provides a very entertaining and informative look at all aspects of enjoying beer. He reviews the history of beer, how the brewing process contributes to the resulting product, and how to evaluate beer, not only from a judging perspective but also from a pure enjoyment perspective. The book is full of interesting little facts, such as the fact that the "tongue map" of sensations we'v ...more
Jan 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: beer
If you're trying to learn about beer, this book is outstanding. It has to be one of the best medium-length guides to all things beer, including tasting, history by region, a bit on brewing, serving, glassware, a bit on draught systems, flavors, off-flavors, colors, a bit on pairings, and fairly extensive (though limited) introductions to all styles, even historical ones. If you're pleasure reading, it might be a bit much, but if you're intermediate to advanced in learning about the world's most ...more
Jill Miller
Sep 04, 2011 rated it really liked it
I read this for a class I was taking, and found it to be quite an enjoyable textbook! There is a wealth of information in the book, and many excellent illustrations. The beer/food pairing section is especially good. My only complaint is that the book wasn't organized quite as well as I wish it had seemed a little jumbled at times. Overall, quite an enjoyable and informative read, and WOW, does that guy love beer!! ...more
Dec 22, 2009 rated it really liked it
I read this for a book club. It's a great reference to have, but not the kind of book to read straight through. I learned a lot and now would like to try brewing at home in order to learn more about the brewing process. He mentions a lot of neat events his organization puts on in Chicago that I'd like to attend. Highly recommended. ...more
Apr 08, 2013 rated it really liked it
While a little repetitive at times this book does a great job explaining the origins of beer, the specifics of beer tasting as well as the nuances that make each type of beer different. Good for any casual beer fan looking to learn more about the history behind the beer they are drinking. This book has earned a prominent spot on my coffee table!
Jun 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
An excellent book that covers everything you'd want to know about beer. Includes many perspectives (historical, scientific, culinary) and breaks down every beer style imaginable. Whether you want to know what cheese pairs best with a Doppelbock or how the industrial revolution helped the proliferation of lagers, this book has it.

And now that I am thirsty, I must conclude this review.
Jul 02, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I am flipping back and forth through this book. I have tons of bartending books and this is the best one on beer that I've ever come across. Highly recommend this book. ...more
Liz De Coster
Interesting, but for serious beer geeks only!
Dec 28, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
11/30/2020 - 4/10

I enjoy beer and learning about it. This was an easy read but it was a bit all over the place with nothing too new or interesting for me. I'm not sure what goal for the book was. It's hard to tell what audience the author was shooting for - there's some very basic beer info, but there is also hardcore tasting directions including very detailed instructions on spiking beers with pipettes for off flavors. It tries to cover thousands of years of beer history with many countries (in
Gustavo Yepez
Oct 13, 2022 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There is so much content in this book that the part where beer styles are described only starts more than halfway into the book.

I learned about history, chemistry, physics, geography, biology, linguistics, and much more. The author is knowledgeable to a point where you think “there is no way a single person knows this much about so many different topics”, and he never comes across as arrogant while sharing his knowledge.

This book has already improved my beer drinking experience. I now know how
Aug 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Can't say enough good stuff about this book. This book was recommended to me as a study guide for the Level 1 Cicerone Beer Server Exam. I told some of my co-workers I was reading this as preparation, and they assured me that if I just read the study guide our bar manager gave us, I'd pass the test no problem. I didn't need to read a 367-page book to pass the exam. They may be right, but this was honestly such a good read, I didn't want to put it down. Enjoying an IPA at the end of the day is an ...more
Feb 16, 2022 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Definitely an interesting book if you’re interesting about going more in-depth about beer than just drinking and enjoying it without thinking about it.

It has about everything it should have. History, brewing process, how tasting and smelling beer works in your body, how to taste and judge beer, how to present beer, food pairings, self brewing and beer cocktails. And then it ends with some useful charts that you can use in your beer journey (a lot of useful charts and images are everywhere in t
Rajiv Chopra
Aug 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: culture
I actually do like this book quite a lot. It is well written, with lots of information. I do love the quotes he brings into the book, and this liven it up quite a lot.

While I am not a beer expert, I wonder if the USA is a beer heaven, as he claims. Possibly, yes. The march of tasteless beers due to steady commercialisation is inevitable.

Some of the technical aspects went over my head, and this is the only reason I give it four stars instead of five.

All in all, a really enjoyable book
Mar 15, 2021 rated it liked it
Difficult to rate this book for me. Its easy to tell the writer is a real beergeek and knows a lot of beer. There is a lot of information in the book and a lot of history.

But I just could not keep my attention to the book. I love craftbeer and I was hoping to really learn how to taste, what the beers should taste like. The info is there l, but for me not written in a way I could really enjoy and remember it.
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