First things first – beerexpert.co.uk is written by men, two men. This is something we could probably not very well hide due to the ‘blokey’, if well mannered tone of some of the articles! So, what qualifies this article writer to talk about ‘the female palate’?
Well, to counter any judgment of sexism or plain poor research, this man would like to point out that he has: 1) been practically married to several women at different points in time, so is in a position to comment going purely on observation and; 2) has noted a propensity (one that bears an upward trend) for women on these shores (the UK) to drink beer, often in pints, and rather a lot of it. Not all of them, mind, but some of them.
In this time the writer has noted that women have quite differing tastes from one another… some drink Guinness, some drink Lager, some ale (though, to be sure, not that many, in the latter case.
What this article aims to do is celebrate the rights of women to drink as little or as much beer as they like as sensible or as raucously! The writer expects to be pilloried by his Mother (who enjoys a stout), his sister (who enjoys a Stella), his girlfriend (who enjoys a Peroni) and several friends and ex’s, one of whom drinks bitter and all of whom like “those fruit-y beers” if he gets anything wrong, or lets slip a chauvinistic comment.
Female Beer Drinkers – A Profile
Women used to drink beer in half’s and only occasionally, or so we are led to believe. In some sections of society this was once true. In others it has always been complete hogwash. There are women up North who have always made southern men look whet behind the ears. They never stood impishly behind their man whispering “oo, just a ‘alf for me, I come over all delicate when I drink”. No, it never happened.
Some women have drunk pints for all of time, and in recent years, following a huge feminist movement that it would have been hard for even the most fervent lager lout to miss, an awful lot of women enjoy pints.
There was a time when women drank lager mainly, and going by observation it seems they still drink lager more than ale. However, it must be noted that most young men drink lager more than ale too, and that women who like to experiment with their drinks, beyond necking fruit flavoured vodka bevies do find they quite like ale (or bitter, as it is also known).
So, lager is not a ‘woman’s drink’ as some men argue, but merely a drink drunk by women (as well as men), partly due to the lack of choice they are offered by multinational beer corporations when they first start drinking underage in bars!
So it must be said that women can and do enjoy the full range of beers available to them, and the variety they drink has increased as pubs and brewers have been encouraged by groups such as CAMRA (The Campaign for Real Ale) to sell a wider choice of quality beers.
We might add here that they drink stout quite happily, and though this might be due to its chocolate notes, it may be that Irish women (who drink it quite heartily) have glamourised it whilst maintaining a certain celtic mystique back to the beer.
Women undoubtedly like chocolate and sweet things more than men and some people argue that women are more likely to go for fruit and chocolate variations of beer. Well, this is as may be, but many men have been enticed by beers such as Friuli and Kriek Beer.
Though here it is worth noting that whilst women don’t necessarily prefer these beers more than men do, they may well like to be offered such a beer by a man – and therein lies a tip next time you take a date down to the pub (you cheap skate!).
So, there we have a profile that shows us that women beer drinkers sometimes drink pints (and this is not rare). They don’t drink ale much, but if they are offered it and they know what it is then they quite often enjoy it. They also quite like adventurous variations including chocolate and fruit. They drink less than men, though this is a generalization and not a hard and fast rule.
Given this information we might well let the woman choose her own beer; after all, she knows what she likes. If you do choose for her (whether you are a woman or a man) don’t, for Pete’s sake, choose a mass produced middle of the road lager – go for white beer, wheat beer, banana beer, coffee flavoured beer-anything!