When I sip or taste something that I don’t like, so often someone will tell me, “It’s an acquired taste.” I find that so annoying. I don’t think that anything is an “acquired” taste. When people say that, what they really mean is, “no one really likes this, they just pretend to like it to fit into their social circle.” One case in point is beer. I know that a lot of people will try to disagree with me on this, but it’s true. There are societies, and clubs, and conventions dedicated to people who like beer, yet through all of the “flavors” of beer, they’re all bitter and unpalatable. When people drink beer, even people who profess to love it, their facial expressions reveal the true nature of their palate’s feelings.
Now don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against fitting in with one’s social circle. What I have an issue with is people trying to convince of something that isn’t true. I don’t care how much I eat or drink of something, I cannot force myself to start liking the taste of something that repulses me. It simply cannot happen, and I don’t appreciate someone trying to convince me that it can.
Moving beyond the untruthful part, and back to the beer, what I find interesting about beer itself is that on its own, it is repulsive, yet it has wonderful culinary potential.
- Though beer doesn’t taste so good on its own, adding it to other drinks can give them a little fizz–a bit of pizzazz that makes them a little better than they were before.
- Adding a little beer to baked beans or chili gives it just enough kick to step it up.
- Beer batter has become an American staple. Whether seasoned with simple salt and pepper, or flavored with complex spices, deep fried beer batter covering anything from veggies to chicken is sure to be a hit.
- Used as a yeast accelerator, beer can produce some of the most amazingly flavorful breads.
In the end, I don’t like being told that I can “acquire” a taste for something if I continue to eat something I don’t like, because it simply isn’t true. As far as flavor goes, something that doesn’t taste good on its own can still be useful. Flavor is complex and intricate. Understanding how to use and integrate flavors is the mark of a good cook.