19 Mar

A Matter of Taste

Give me something that is both salty, sweet, hot and cold, and you have given me the perfect food. Yes, I will admit that am one of those people that dips French fries in Frosty’s. I am also someone that generally asks for the hoppiest beer on tap. This hasn’t always been the case. My taste in alcohol started off very sweet (think Mike’s Hard Raspberry Lemonade), transitioned to yellow fizz (oh the days of college and Keystone Light), and eventually became addicted to a variety of craft beer.

Tastebud Basics

The average adult has between 2,000 and 10,000 taste buds that perceive sweet, salty, sour, bitter, and potentially a fifth savory taste called umami. Salty and sour detection is needed to control salt and acid balance. Bitter detection warns of foods containing poisons. Sweet provides a guide to calorie-rich foods. Taste buds in combination with smell discern flavor.

In 7 Things You Didn’t Know About Your Taste Buds, Dr. Bartoshuk states the normal life cycle for a taste bud is 10 to 14 days. You can kill taste buds, but they grow back immediately. This is why the ability to taste does not diminish with age. Taste preferences also fluctuate with hormones. For example, the ability to taste bitterness does decline in women when menopause begins. This may be because “the taste of bitter is hardwired to be a cue for poison, early in pregnancy your brain becomes sensitized to avoid it in order to guard your baby,” says Dr. Bartoshuk.

A Womanly Disposition

Ladies may have a step-up in choosing good beer. According to an interview conducted with Lettie Teague, The Wall Street Journal wine columnist, women are better at perceiving smells, more sensitive to bitter flavors, prefer sweet, and may notice more subtleties. This is confirmed by findings from a study conducted jointly by Danish Science Communication and food scientists from The Faculty of Life Sciences (LIFE) at University of Copenhagen on almost 9,000 children.

The Danish study showed that girls are generally better at recognizing concentrations of both sweet and sour tastes. According to Michael Bom Frøst, Associate Professor at the Department of Food Science at LIFE, the experiment showed that boys and girls have largely the same number of taste buds and it appeared that what makes the difference is the way in which boys and girls process taste impressions. The study indicated that boys need an average of approximately 10 per cent more sourness and approximately 20 per cent more sweetness to recognize the taste. The study additionally indicated that the ability to recognize tastes increases gradually with age, and the greatest shift is seen at 13-14 years when children become markedly more sensitive to sour tastes and love of very sweet flavors decreases.

A Matter of Training

I prefer bold flavors, so you will probably won’t overhear me say, “you can really taste the oak undertones and a slight taste of cherry in the background.” But, you can train your palate to like new food by bringing out its sweetness, or by adding something fatty.

People also are influenced by social cues, such as eating a certain food with someone else who really enjoys it, or with someone whom you admire and like. If your friends have good taste, then you also are encouraged to have good taste.

While women naturally may naturally be more sensitive to certain flavors, cultivating taste requires exposure. Nutrition experts advise parents to try expose their children to new flavors, and research shows that it can take as many as 10 to 15 tastes before a child will learn to appreciate a new flavor. These same theories can be applied to training your palate to drink certain beers.

So the more beer you taste, with a group of people you like, the better your palate is trained? Sounds like we have our work cut out for us, ladies.

References:

Jane Bradbury, Taste Perception: Cracking the Code http://www.plosbiology.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pbio.0020064 (March 16, 2004).

Amanda Greene, 7 Things You Didn’t Know About Your Taste Buds. Woman’s Day. (http://www.womansday.com/health-fitness/7-things-you-didnt-know-about-your-taste-buds-119709).

F. Martin Ramin interview with Lettie Teague, Do Men and Women Taste Wine Differently? http://live.wsj.com/video/do-men-and-women-taste-wine-differently/2F0A6CA2-36F7-4197-B417-4E9621D3BBCC.html#!2F0A6CA2-36F7-4197-B417-4E9621D3BBCC. (June 30, 2012)

Cynthia Sass, Retrain Your Tastebuds. http://www.eatingwell.com/nutrition_health/nutrition_news_information/retrain_your_taste_buds (Jan/Feb 2007).

University of Copenhagen, Girls Have Superior Sense Of Taste To Boys. Science Daily. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081216104035.htm (Dec. 18, 2008)

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13 Mar

Brew and Chew at BCAE

Important lesson: when you fail at blogging, find guest posters. One of our GPO gals Nicole came to the BCAE Brew and Chew with me last week and somehow I got her to write about it. Maybe it was because she won a free ticket? ;) Thanks to BCAE for having us, High & Mighty for the beers, and Sam and Chris for the INCREDIBLE food. Boston friends, get over to jm Curley and Bogie’s Place immediately, eat all the food (drinks! beer!) and enjoy the food coma. We’ll have some exciting news about an upcoming event with them soon. We’ll keep you updated!

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Last Monday I had the honor of attending a class at the Boston Center of Adult Education entitled, “Brew and Chew”. The evening would be a night of recipes created by jm Curley’s chef Sam Monsour and paired with beers from High & Mighty. I knew when I walked into the Center and immediately smelled meat smoking that it was going to be a very good time. The menu was as follows:

· Veal Schnitzel w/Brat Spice – H&M Purity of Essence.

· Cocoa Nib-Jerk Rubbed Pork Tenderloin w/Pineapple-Mint Salsa – H&M Divine Brown

 Harissa Rubbed Lamb Riblets – H&M Fumata Bianca

· Five Spice-Duck Breast Buns w/Kimchi – H&M XPA

· Cumin & Coriander Crusted Sea Scallops w/Gremolata – H&M Beer of the Gods

 

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While I don’t cook a great deal of meat at home, I have to say, this class definitely inspired me to try to change that. The duck breast buns alone were enough to have me running out to buy a steamer and to finally make kimchi ASAP. I have a special place in my heart for all things buns so those were definitely my favorite. However, there was not a single dish that disappointed. From the perfectly seared scallops to the contrasting spicy and coolness of the pork and salsa, it was one stand-out dish after another. But what really completed each dish was the perfect pairing of the High & Mighty beers. I’ve been to plenty of wine pairing dinners, but it was such a treat to have some of my favorite beers paired with these awesome dishes. And while I am not always a fan of smoky beers, I have to say that the lamb and Fumata Bianca was the best pairing of the night. There was something about the smoke in the beer that just brought out the flavor of the lamb perfectly. But despite all of these amazing dishes and delicious beers, I think one of my favorite lessons of the night was how easily I can not only make mustard, but make it with beer! I’ll be trying out that recipe, immediately for my very own brew and chew at home!

One more fun fact – we’ve got a team going for the upcoming Cambridge 5K and some weekly runs. Head on over to our Facebook page for info or send an email to us. 

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12 Sep

Volunteer Opportunity: ORANJE

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Our friends over at ORANJE are in need of some awesome volunteers to help with event duties for the night of September 22nd.
ORANJE would not be possible with out the assistance of all of the wonderful volunteers.  It is the combined efforts of everyone involved in ORANJE, which makes the event special and your assistance is greatly appreciated.

All persons who volunteer for ORANJE prior to the event for a minimum of four (4) hours will be given one (1) general admission ticket to ORANJE 2012.  Volunteers assisting with promotions/marketing and/or photography, videography/multimedia will be given free access to the events at which you volunteer.  Volunteers will meet up with an ORANJE Volunteer Coordinator at a specified location and will be given an agenda at the beginning of their shift. Volunteers are expected to diligently and professionally complete all tasks to which they are assigned.

 Volunteering the night of ORANJE 2012:

Volunteers who work at ORANJE 2012 will act as ORANJEAmbassadors and will assist patrons and participants within the event.  It is very important to be both equipped with knowledge of ORANJE, as well as to know when to ask for assistance.  ORANJE will provide you with detailed plans and information about the 2010 event, however, do not be afraid to admit to a patron or participant that you need to ask for assistance.

Volunteer shifts on the night of the event are split into two (2) four (4) hour shifts.

Shift 1 - 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM

Shift 2 - 11:00 PM to 2:00 AM

 Here is an easy link to sign up for any of the volunteer shifts!  Email volunteer@oranjeindy.com with any questions!

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09 Aug

Volunteer Callout: Pourers needed at Dig IN 2012

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The 3rd Annual Dig IN is a festival celebrating the farm to fork movement in Indiana.  Dig IN 2012 will feature 30+ world-class chefs cooking up delicious food, drink from 10 breweries and 7 wineries all from Indiana.  The fun does not stop there with more local artisans and gourmet food trucks being added this year.

Dig IN is currently looking for beer-minded, enthusiastic, food lovin’ volunteers to assist with pouring beer on Sunday, August 26th from 11 AM – 5 PM.  All volunteers receive free admission to the event and a free t-shirt.  Volunteers duties include taking turns working the different beer tables and moving around the food sampling tables/tents. If you (or a friend with a valid liquor license or temporary event pouring license) would be interested in participating, please reach out to Heather Hall at heather@sunkingbrewing.com. 

Cheers!

Beth

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27 Jul

Same Lady, New City!

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I’ve made a move! About two weeks ago my husband and I moved to Philadelphia from Boston. For me that meant leaving the amazing beer community in Boston and MA Girls’ Pint Out. But, as luck would have it, I was able to move right into a new role here in Philly as chapter head for the PA Girls’ Pint Out chapter. I’m so thrilled that I still get to be part of this awesome organization and really excited for my new role. This is my own official introduction so the ladies of Philadelphia can get to know me. I’m looking forward to getting to know them!

A little about me: I am originally from New York and spent the last six years in Boston. My craft beer love started a few years ago. Before then I couldn’t stand the taste of it. Probably because I’d only had awful beer. Finally, a Harpoon UFO came along and became the first beer I actually enjoyed. From there, beer and I have had a budding relationship that just seems to get better with time. Ever since I really started paying attention to the beer I drink I’ve found so many new varieties, tastes, and breweries. I get a little nerdy about beer too. Give me all the information that you can – the story behind the beer, the hops used, the time it takes to ferment, the process of creating those unique flavors – and I’ll happily listen and take notes. I’m a foodie too, and like trying to incorporate all the things I love into what I cook – beer included. I figure, why only drink beer when you can use it in your food too? Outside of GPO I’m an event planner and higher education professional. I love to cook and eat, taking pictures, writing, reading my Kindle, and being with family and friends. Can’t wait to make new friends through Philly GPO!

If you want to reach me please shoot me an email at kristen@girlspintout.com or tweet me @PAGirlsPintOut. Follow us on Facebook too! Always feel free to send along suggestions or questions. I’ll also be introducing Bonnie and Bernadette who will be helping me with the chapter in the next week! Cheers!

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24 Jul

New Girls’ Pint Out T-Shirts

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T-Shirts are in and are ready to send out to your hot little hands! We’ve only got ladies versions in right now, but settle down, boys – we’ll have some for you soon! These are Bella super soft v-neck tees (style #6405). They run pretty true to size and have a little stretch in them, but will shrink up a little bit, so keep that in mind when ordering! Colors are white on grey and white on pink and you can order with the link below for $24. Email us with any questions! Info@girlspintout.com

ORDER HERE! 
Girls’ Pint Out T-Shirt Order Form


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18 Jul

So Long, Farewell

with magen

Auf Wiedersehen, Goodbye….

I started Girls’ Pint Out just over two and a half years ago. The growth, fellowship, and popularity are far beyond what I ever could have imagined for GPO. I have loved every minute of the time I’ve spent giving women the opportunity to join me on the journey into beer. We’ve helped people in times of need. We’ve volunteered in our community. We’ve brought our friends into the craft beer world. We’ve grown from 1 chapter to a national network of women who are passionate about beer. Some of our members have started their own breweries, gotten jobs in the industry, had kids, gone through horrible loss, and through it all, we were there for them.

So now it’s my turn to say goodbye. I am handing the reigns over to Becca from our Massachusetts chapter. I’ll still write guest posts when what I have to say is relevant to women in beer, but my time planning events, managing our social media and PR communications has come to an end. I will miss interacting with everyone so much! My current schedule just doesn’t allow me the time I would need to dedicate to do the best job possible. I am so lucky in that as soon as I started voicing concern I was struggling to keep up, Magen and Becca jumped in and told me that it was okay to take this time to focus on my family and my life outside of Girls Pint Out.

I’ll still be continuing my journey in the beer community as an individual as my interests have expanded beyond what the core mission of Girls’ Pint Out is all about. I’ll be attending events as a participant and I’m eager to see what’s next, just like you are.

Thank you to everyone who has ever supported us. I wish I could name you all….but that would take longer than I have. Please know that I am so grateful for the love and enthusiasm from the community. None of this was possible without you.

Don’t be a stranger and keep in touch.

Cheers,
Tamre

My Facebook Page - let’s be friends!
Twitter - chirp chirp!
Email: tamre.s.mullins@gmail.com

 

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16 Jul

Beer Bloggers Conference 2012 Wrap Up

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Indianapolis, Indiana was the site of the 3rd Annual Beer Bloggers Conference organized by Zephyr Adventures. Girls’ Pint Out was part of the local Indianapolis bloggers that acted as liaisons, answered questions, and drove people to the liquor store to buy beer to take home. The mix of sponsor content, blogger content and events kept us extremely busy during the conference.

Kudos to Indianapolis. The comments about the city were all positive. “The mix of old and new architecture is cool.” “Indianapolis is CLEAN.” “I had no idea Indianapolis and Indiana had so much great beer!” We couldn’t be prouder. Everyone locally who made this a success for the city: Visit Indy, Brewers Guild of Indiana, World Class Beverages and Monarch Beverages, Marriott Downtown, the list goes on. The local breweries showed what Hoosier hospitality was all about. They let bloggers visit while they were closed, hosted tours and tastings, and provided a true look at how Indiana is becoming a beer tourism destination.

This year’s conference did not focus on the technical aspects of blogging. WordPress plug-ins, monetizing your blog, and ad networks? Not this conference. There were keynote speeches by Julia Herz, Garrett Oliver and Randy Mosher. Industry panels featuring distributors, breweries and retailers. Blogger panels about how some have turned a hobby into a career. The 2012 conference content was the strongest yet.

Julia Herz, The Brewers Association Craft Beer Director gave her annual state of craft beer address. She addressed the dated nomenclature “food and wine” and a cultural shift towards craft beer. Look for “food and wine” to shift towards “food and beverages.” The statistics and insight she share are always a treat. Did you know you most Americans live about 2 miles or less from an establishment making beer? Julia’s passion and straight up knowledge is unparalleled.

During Garrett Oliver‘s keynote speech, he drove home the point that what bloggers do isn’t a game. Every review, every article written, every opinion – should be thought out. “This isn’t a game.” He encouraged us to be objective, be better, and while it’s okay to not like a beer, be conscious as a blogger to your responsibility. Respect the force. 

Randy Mosher‘s keynote took us back to the beginning of civilization. His history of beer was entertaining and extremely in depth. Persian drinking boots, Rembrandt drinking beer with his wife, neuroscience, and again responsibility. It’s okay to not know the answer, but do your best to find the truth. Learn your audience, learn everything you can.

A tweet made it into our stream questioning “are beer bloggers so self-important now need a conference?” Well, no and yes. Beer bloggers are on the front lines of what is shaping up to be a Golden Age for beer. We’re able to spend time with the product and the people who make it. Bloggers are getting information to people interested in beer but may not be familiar with the industry past knowing they are tired of mountains that turn blue when cold. We can breathe life into a six pack sitting on a shelf. That’s power. The same power food bloggers have when they wax poetic over quinoa to make readers want to try it.

Traditional journalism can’t keep up with the beer industry. Journalists are already spread thin due to staffing cuts or straight up outsourcing. Bloggers are the experts (that’s scary!). So are we self-important? No. We have a place and an opportunity to do great things. It’s our time to shine. Do we need a conference? Yes. It gives bloggers a chance to meet face to face, network and have some fun. The sessions are crafted to make you think, give you inspiration, and be entertained. Bloggers have an opportunity to visit cities they might normally pass on. (Seriously, does anyone besides Jim Nantz say “ooh, honey! Let’s vacation in Indianapolis!”?) So those of you who might be reading this and are skeptical of the Beer Bloggers Confernece? You missed out. Those who attended are now inspired with fresh ideas, new contacts and a stronger sense of community.

Community. That word came up a lot this weekend. Beer bloggers as a group – all of us – those who attended, those who couldn’t or didn’t want to – we’re a community. It’s up to us to work together and help the beer community get education and information out there. Sure it can be fun to call someone out, but is that really where we want to go? This community is only as strong as we make it. Collaborate with other blogs – across the country – expand your circle. Being a local beer blog is the standard but push farther and give your readers a taste of what we experienced this weekend.

Girls’ Pint Out started a blog to get our events out there. The evolution over the past two and a half years and the growth of women beer drinkers is not something we predicted would happen so quickly. Chapters are forming all over the country and if you are interested in starting a chapter, contact us! We’ll help you get it off the ground. Our chapter presidents will tell you, the beer community needs groups of consumers and the success has been overwhelming. Email us: info@girlspintout.com if you are serious about getting a chapter started.

Thank you again to everyone who made this a great weekend. It couldn’t have gone better.

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23 May

Big Beer Reaches New Demographic With Smart Marketing

It’s no surprise that Big Beer (Budweiser, Miller-Coors) is pushing past their core demographic of 20′s-30′s men given the continual growth of craft beer. Craft beer’s mostly universal appeal to both genders is easy to see since craft breweries focus on quality ingredients, unique tastes and diverse styles don’t pander to consumers. The proof is in the numbers provided by the Brewers Association. Craft beer retail sales were up 15% in 2011 while big beer experienced losses. Big beer has been using the “throw a ton of crap at a wall and see what sticks” method lately (Iced Tea Beer, Coconut Water Malted Beverage, Lime-A-Rita) to try to gain a foothold on a demographic that has slipped through their fingers into the palms of craft beer. Women.

Instead of continuing on the same path of objectifying women with commercials of co-eds in teeny bikinis, angry wives, and obtuse girlfriends, AB-Inbev’s Michelob Ultra campaign

has always targeted young professionals with an emphasis on how it fits into a healthy lifestyle. Now they’ve discovered sponsored blog content and are reaching women directly in an entirely new way.

Check out Hostess With The Mostess – a site that focuses on party planning ideas, DIY projects, party themes, and resources. They just launched a giveaway sponsored by Michelob Ultra’s newest creation Light Cider. And you know what? It’s freaking smart. They paired the product with a picnic giveaway including a gift card to buy the hard cider (since it’s illegal to give away alcohol free and clear) and items for a summer picnic. All of the items are color coordinated with the cider, hand picked to create a really well thought out promotion. The photos of the giveaway items are styled very well to appeal to their typical reader. Over 100 women have already entered.


Kudos to Michelob Ultra and the vision to create a campaign that is actually well done. Is this an endorsement of the product? No…but recognition is due here for looking past the norm. Michelob will do well with their Light Cider this summer if they reach out to women with female oriented promotions and sponsorships.

 

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11 Nov

How To Navigate a Craft Beer Tasting Room

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Face it, trying a new craft beer can be an enlightening experience or downright disgusting. Finding out the hard way Simcoe hops aren’t for you is no fun when you spent $12.00 on a six pack. Breweries are hip and smart to offer tasting rooms that give us a place to try out their line up and debut one off specialities, collaborations, movie nights, fundraisers, food trucks and more. Read More

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