Don’t let FOMO ruin your beer experience

Fear of missing out, popularly referred to as FOMO, is easy to succumb to as a brewer or even as a fan of craft beer.

As a brewer there are more beers that I would like to brew than I have to make, let alone time to drink. For this summer I wanted to brew a Bell’s Oberon clone, a Shipyard Summer Ale clone that I would split part of to make a Sea Dog Wild Blueberry clone, and I thought of making a Budwiser-inspired brew to mock some of the brand’s recent marketing foibles. Needless to say I didn’t brew any of these. I managed to brew two beers for the summer, my Westbrook Gose clone and Summer Somewhere.

Boston sports personality and provocateur Michael Felger once said, “Acceptance is the price of freedom”. It is important to accept that you as a brewer can’t brew everything you want. Many brewers have family and work obligations that make brewing difficult. Others have space and equipment limitations. Me, I have to accept that I can’t have a chest freezer converted into a kegerator (keezer) until we move to a bigger place.

As a beer drinker there are more breweries in the United States now than at any point in history. These craft brewers are coming out with new beers all of the time.  We also have access to imports from all over the world. No matter how many new beers you want to try, you will never be able to try them all. It can even be difficult to try all of your favorite seasonal beers every year.

For some perspective, let’s say your circumstances dictate that you can barely brew enough to keep one beer on tap. Or perhaps you’re not able to drive out of your way to go to a brewery, and just drink what you can get at the local bottle shop. Chances are whatever you’re drinking is still vastly superior to what was available a generation ago.

Brewing and drinking beer are supposed to be fun. It is certainly more fun when you accept the fact that you probably won’t be able to brew an oktoberfest, pumpkin ale, brown ale, wet hop IPA, and hoppy amber ale for the fall on top of any house beers you try to keep year-round. It is impossible to go to every hot new brewery that opens, or try every great wait-in-line IPA.

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