Reader feedback: Beer test raises more questions than it answers

Re: The great beer taste-off, By Matt Reynolds, July 6 - 11, Vol 10, No 26

I don't like how this article was presented at all. It is rather insulting to say that the American and the woman in the panel were the only ones who gave a higher grade to a certain beer. What are you implying? Women don't know anything about beer? Americans don't know anything about beer?

I am an American, and I strongly dislike most American beer - I could have also chosen bažant as my favourite. I would rather ask why was a "typical American" taste incorporated into the judging process? What purpose did it serve and how did it actually distort the rankings? I agree that it did, but I would not insult all Americans and all women to get my point across.

Based on this article, I find the results of this taste test rather inconclusive. It would be interesting to compare American tastes to Slovak/Czech tastes or the differences between men and women's taste preferences, but this taste test does neither.

And why did Pilsner Urquell fall so far? Is it the taste of the judges using different criteria than last year or is it because the quality of the brewing process and ingredients has changed? If Pilsner Urquell and Kozel have fallen to the lower end of the list, I could easily assume it is because the judges don't like bitter lagers. But I can't tell at all by reading this article.

There are too many loose ends here.

Bill Bila, Munich, Germany

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