The Book of Beer Knowledge: Essential Wisdom for the Discerning Drinker
First and foremost, this is a CAMRA book and, secondarily, an Englishman’s book. Having said that, this fit-in-your-back-pocket number has hours of entertainment packed in a scant number of pages for beer lovers, regardless of nationality.
Although perhaps not on a par with sports fanatics, serious beer lovers revel in their mastery of the arcanae of their passion. One night at a bar, I watched a large sum of money change hands over the calorie count in a stout: this, after a feisty debate as to who would be the best authority at the other end of the phone to settle the bet.
Now we have The Book of Beer Knowledge. While not pretending to be a font of obscure and argument-settling information, Evans’ little tome packs pages with interesting tidbits and bonne mots to keep anyone with a passing interest in beer locked up for hours. The book has three types of entries—important bits of information with interesting explanations, lists the likes of which won’t find print anywhere else, and quotes to remind the reader of the extent of beer’s heritage.
Whether it is the other beer purity law from the Isle of Man, a great beer to have in each state of the United States, or Dickens’ thoughts on sips of beer, readers will not lack for stimulating items to tease the intellectual beer buds. Every beer-loving bar should have this nestled right beside the register. No, it will not solve every argument, but it will spark greater interest in all things beer, and that is not bad at all.