How To Speak Beer Geek
by Zach McCully
Beer geeks, the hardest of the hardcore, whose singular obsession with craft beer
has spawned a parlance all its own. Here is a list of their most oft used words to help
you understand them.
Beer wall (also: beer tower): A bizarre thing NEIPA (New England India Pale Ale)
lovers do. After procuring their full allotments of a rare release, they head back home
neatly stack the cans into a wall of beer, and then photograph it for the express
purpose of bragging on Instagram. (a/k/a - nice haul!)
BIN: Standing for “buy it now,” this acronym is strictly online jargon unleashed when a
beer geek offers a rare beer for sale on a private Facebook group or secret online
forum. Typically, the first person to write “BIN” in the comments section of the post is
allowed first dibs on actually purchasing the black-market beer.
Cellar: Where beer geeks store the prized beers — usually imperial stouts or sours
— that they are “aging.” With low light and cool temperatures no matter the season,
a cellar is an optimal place to store aging beer or wine. Of course, today’s beer geek
will use the term “cellar” even if they are storing their beers in the bottom of a coat
closet, underneath their twin bed, or in their kitchen cupboards,
Collabs: When two or more breweries collaborate to brew a beer. Even though
participating breweries are often some of the sexiest names in the business today,
the beers they produce are often less than the sum of their reputations. Whatever
the case, beer geeks are far more likely to covet these offerings.
Crushable: A light, easy-drinking beer that can be drunk in bulk. Nevertheless, many
beer geeks enjoy using the term to describe DDH juice that is high-ABV and anything
Dank: A flavor note often used to describe an IPA, especially one with marijuana-like
characteristics due to its hops profile.
DDH: Standing for “double dry-hopped,” this term doesn’t actually tell you anything
about a beer (as so often there is no similar release that was single dry-hopped).
There are also triple and even quadruple dry-hopped beers, which, in these cases,
are mainly just vague designations of hops potency.
Drain pour: A beer so awful that one has no choice but to immediately pour it down
the kitchen sink drain instead of drinking it, often while filming the act on their phone.
The latter is usually done to brag about having to drain pour a beer that many others
Falling off: Term the all-knowing beer geek uses to describe a beer that has started
getting subtly worse due to age.
Flocc: Short for flocculation, which refers to how yeast binds together after
fermentation. Beers that do not flocc well tend to be hazier.
Freshies: Term for just-released cans of NEIPA, often canned just a few hours
previous and, thus, extraordinarily fresh. Most super beer geeks will refuse to drink
any NEIPA older than a week or two.
Gusher: A beer that immediately gushes out of the bottle once opened, usually
making a mess. Gushers often occur due to over-carbonation or even a bacterial
Hazeboys : A breed of beer fan who strictly buys, trades, and drinks NEIPAs .
Hazies: Slang for NEIPAs, due to their cloudy appearance.
ISO/FT: Standing for “In search of”/“For trade,” these abbreviations are strictly online
patois used when a beer geek is proposing a trade.
Juice: More slang for NEIPAs, which so often resemble fresh-squeezed OJ.
Juice Wolves: A lampooning term coined by Industrial Arts Brewing to describe
hazeboys and juice-seekers.
Juicy: The most common (and lazy) flavor descriptor for NEIPAs, which utilize hops
that produce a citrusy character and brewing methods (such as adding oats) that
create a juice-like haziness and soft mouthfeel.
Mixed ferm: De rigueur sour beers that have been fermented with a mix of standard
brewer’s yeast (Saccharomyces) as well as a “wild” yeast or bacteria like
Brettanomyces, Lactobacillus, and/or Pediococcus.
Mule: A person whom beer geeks get to stand in line with them in order to increase
their allotments of a limited-release beer. Inspired by the term “drug mule.”
New money: A derisive term for a beer geek only aware of the whales of the moment,
and not some of the major players from a prior era.
Pastry stout: These uniquely modern imperial stouts are so overloaded with sweet
ingredients (ranging from cocoa nibs and vanilla beans to toasted coconut, maple
syrup, and even candy bars)
Proper glassware: Using a branded glass similar to the beer you are currently
drinking. It does not refer to the style of glass.
Release: A new beer or the day a new beer comes out, spoken of with grave
Share (also: bottle share): When beer geeks get together for the express purpose of
sharing their whales so they can taste another geek’s whales in return.
Shelf turd: A less-than-rare beer that is usually available on the shelves at a store
any time you visit. Often used to denigrate a once-coveted beer that no longer sells
Ticker: A beer geek with an obsession for trying every hyped beer ever released,
even if he only drinks a mere ounce of it in most cases.
Whale: A rare beer one dreams of landing some day, so dubbed in honor of Ahab
and his maniacal search for Moby Dick. Ultra-rare beers are sometimes called “white
whales”. The term has slowly begun to lose favor as the monoculture of canned
NEIPAs has taken over.
source: Aaron Goldfarb on Vinepair
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Beer Geek Dictionary
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