One Bald Man's Journey Through Beer

Erik Hernquist, June 11, 2013

On a warm spring day, I enjoyed my first beer.  I can still taste that carbonated, soggy Wonder Bread in a can that my friend and I snuck out during a birthday party for one of his parents.  Sure, it was a Budweiser and it was gross, but since we were underage, it was still a thrill for us.  It was a moment I won’t forget.

Fast forward many, many years later…

Miller Lite was my “go-to," starting with having a cold beer on the back of the boss’s truck on Fridays after a long week working outside.  This carried on into college (I couldn’t force myself to drink Beast or Olympia) and I have fond memories of parties and several beach trips drinking ice cold Miller Lite.  As I got older, I started dabbling in beers with a little something extra.  My girlfriend (now wife) and I would grab some wheat beers and sit on her balcony after work.  In the winter, I’d grab the occasional oatmeal stout or winter ale.

Then I went on a hiatus – I started working in the wine industry.  While I was no longer drinking beer (as often) I learned quite a bit about experiencing a quality glass of wine.  Aroma, mouthfeel, finish, and the many nuances of taste.  In addition, I had the opportunity to meet several winemakers and learn about the art and science behind making that great juice.

I left the wine industry for the corporate world and dabbled in craft brews with the help of a couple friends. I got into those delicious Bastards from Stone, attended beer tastings, and started a small collection. However, Miller Lite still stayed on my shopping list.

That all changed the day my wife and I were invited to a small party where Miller Lite was not a welcome guest…

My friend pulled me and my Miller Lite to his beer fridge and pulled out some beer he brought from “back home.”  It was close to Halloween, so why not get in the spirit and try this “Zombie Dust” he offered? 

My life as a beer drinker changed forever.  The floral hops and citrus were delicately balanced in a mouth experience I’ll never forget.  I was hooked.  Miller Lite was officially off the shopping list and was replaced by an endless sea of beer mainly accessible with a bottle opener.

I love talking about what I drink, good or bad, and learning from others.  Please don’t mistake me for a pro.  Compared to the writers on the blog and many of you, I’m a neophyte.  However, with this space, I want to share my experiences with you and to be as approachable as the beers we enjoy on a day-to-day basis.

If you are up for sharing this journey with me, follow me on untappd and Twitter.

3 Floyds Zombie Dust

  • Look - 4.5
  • Smell - 4.75
  • Taste - 5
  • Mouthfeel - 4.5
  • Overall - 5