Making Male Bonding Difficult
The first thing my father-in-law asked when I picked him up from the airport was what kind of vodka I keep at home. It was clearly cocktail o’clock and variety to him solely comes in the form of mixers. He is not nor will he ever be a beer guy. How am I supposed to bond with him if not over beers?
My own dad is a little better. Not great, just better. He’s no hophead. And the more I try to broaden his palate, the less open-minded he gets about trying new styles. His range pretty much includes sweet, malty märzens at the ballgame with the Gordon-Biersch garlic fries or sweet, zesty white ales – his favorite being Leinie’s Sunset Wheat. Notice I didn’t say Witbiers because when I took him to a proper beer bar and ordered him a Blanche de Bruxelles, he couldn’t finish the pint. Still, there was beer involved and that goes down as one of the best beers I’ve shared with him.
I’m about to become a father in a few months. The kid will absolutely get little tastes of daddy’s and mommy’s beers along the way, but even though it’s 21 years and 4 months away, I cannot wait until I take my kid to a classic beer bar for his first pint. Unless it’s her’s. I don’t care, so long as he or she develops a taste for good beer.
Does family and friend’s personal preference matter when it comes to bonding with them? It’s been said that the office doesn’t go down to the bar after work for pitchers (or bottles) of champagne. Naturally, there are occasions for wine, whiskey, cocktails… But is it vital that some of that togetherness takes places over beer? If so, is good beer always a pre-req or are you willing to bend your tastebuds if, say, your father-in-law was a Bud man? Because I’ll tell you what, considering mine emptied an entire ice tray into his glass for his cocktail, I kinda wish I coulda split that tray between two shaker glasses (there’s a reason industrial lagers are served “ice cold”) and made it Miller time rather than cocktail o’clock.