Hopworks brewer Ben Love sent out a link to an interesting clip this afternoon of a Today show beer tasting. He was interested in the content that begins at about the 1:45 mark--when they taste the Ace of Spades. In fact, it's the only brewery that gets two beers in the line-up. Quite a coup.
I, however, was interested in the absolute inexperience of the tasters. (Sorry, I have no idea who these folks are. The last host I recall was Bryant Gumble. The guy who brought the beer knows his stuff, though.) Have a look.
This is both encouraging and alarming. Alarming, obviously, because despite how much we think craft beers have made it ("we" being Oregonians), this indicates otherwise. The VAST majority of Americans have never tasted a craft beer. But it's encouraging because the tasters are able to instantly get their bearings. Tasting the barleywine, the host tentatively describes it as "caramelly." Nice! See, beer's not so hard--once you actually crack a good one.