I'm a firm believer that drinking craft beer is indeed a process of going through different phases of finding what is what in a beer--which is what many of us geeks out there have either gone through or in the midst of passing through one phase to another---starting from zero to slowly knowing how to appreciate a beer better--knowing how to differentiate what's a good beer, average beer, bad beer--and awesome beer....
喝craft beer是需要一个开拓味蕾鉴赏力过程的事，这是个人坚信的事，也是很多从零开始认识什么是craft beer到深陷个中魅力啤迷们都经历过的，过程中每个啤迷都会不同时期经历阶段性的追逐特定啤酒“魔咒”，在一定程度上这也其实代表着啤迷的味蕾和视野开拓过程，当然每个人会有不同目标，过程也不尽相同，以下是个人在探索过程中的其中一个阶段性速写：-
During this process of seeking better beer/exploring more varieties of beer styles---most geeks would have his or her own stories of looking out for a certain/particular beer at a certain time be it out of pure curiosity or in the name of trying to elevate one's palate appreciation ability--this is one such story of mine many years ago:-
It was a Spring season quite some years ago--i was in Brussels when somehow i heard there's some Founders KBS to be found at a bottle shop in Ghent---also there's a chance of finding another famous American stouts--Bell's Black Note at the same shop---and so i decided to visit Ghent on the next day---it was not in my original plan since i have already been to Ghent before but the lure of finding my first ever KBS was too tempting to say no--so i went.
那是多年前的一个春天，人在布鲁塞尔的我听说根特的一家瓶子店好像有数量不多的美国酿坊Founders的出名黑啤KBS(Kentucky Breakfast Stout)，于是临时决定买火车票去根特找酒，其实因为以前去过了，这次比利时行程原本并没有计划要去根特，但是因为很想找看是不是能买到当时还没有机会喝到的KBS，而且听说还有另一款也很出名的美国酿坊Bells的黑啤Black Note所以还是临时起意去了。
Took a while for me to find the bottle shop in Ghent the next day after arriving at the train station--then bus--then walk around the area where bottle shop was kinda hidden a little from main road---went in and quickly look around for any signs of those precious American stouts---but none in sight---went to the counter to ask---promptly told by the guy manning shop( with a smile)--that had i visited yesterday when there's still a couple left i might have gotten them---but nope--no luck---all Sold Out.
So the plan to finding my first ever KBS in Belgium went dead.
Of course to many geeks--especially Lambic lovers--my act of trying to seek out a KBS in Belgium would look rather silly---after all this is the "holy land of Lambic"where thousands of geeks flew in year after year "just to drink some Lambic"---well i did went to Cantillon---as well a few bars with nice Lambic selections during that trip---but my act of going to Ghent to look for American stouts did suggested 2 things:-
1. my understanding and love for Lambic at that time was only very little---i was only starting to trying to get to know the magical power of Lambic.
2. my palate appreciation ability was at early stage of turning a corner.
After the trip in Brussels---next was Copenhagen---for Copenhagen Beer Celebration(CBC---before it was eventually known as MBCC)----during the week leading up to the fest---i met a couple of guys from another Scandinavian country( can't remember which)--they were showing KBS in hands and was sort of saying they are sharing---well i did not get to sip any as they did not open the KBS when i was around---so again--no KBS.
比利时之后，接着去了哥本哈根啤酒庆典（Copenhagen Beer Celebration)，那当然是好酒云集的一个星期，也会遇到很多欧美啤迷，其中一对来自北欧的兄弟（忘了是哪一个北欧国家）在一家酒吧外说他们带来了一些酒可以分享，其中包括了被认为是主要吸引力的KBS，不过由于跟他们没怎么说上话所以并没有受邀参与，KBS当然还是没能喝到。
A few months after Brussels and Copenhagen trip---finally with the help of a beer friend in the States( as well some considerable $$ since the logistic cost from US to KL plus taxes alone was already not making much sense to any "normal" beer drinkers)---finally bought a bottle of KBS for a share here in KL with the guys from the group---it was a much smaller size bottle than imagined--but excited nontheless to finally able to get hold of one---obviously the 5 of us was looking forward to tasting it---well---after finally tasting it---the unanimous opinion? ---KBS was by far the most underwhelming/disappointing beer mail bottle we have gotten in from the States---considering the cost/time/expectations involved to getting this stouts---it was not worth the efforts as it was not heads and shoulders above some of the imported stouts we could get here locally---heck--it was probably even lesser in comparison---til now--that impression still lingers on.
In the world of craft beer----there is such a thing as "hype"--be it in positive terms or somewhat negative meaning---there will always be some beers which geeks will rave about/chase after---some new hyped ones would over take or even replaced a once very hyped/famous beer--- there are quite some reasons as to why this is happening---it could be due to another more delicious or more limited/harder to get beer popping up---or because the once hyped/famous beer no longer taste as awesome as previously made---or geeks simply gone tired of a particular beer and seeking out for newer ones---or the somewhat "odd" reason of the once hard to get beer is now so easily available there's no more hype factor.....
craft beer最大吸引力当然在于不同类型风格啤酒选择非常多，但也因为这样会出现啤迷或喜新厌旧或喜新不厌旧的心态，特别是如果住在欧美或就算住在亚洲但有门路可以找到心目中想要啤酒的不少啤迷，因为佳酿选择不在少数，有时候会出现一些几年前奇货可居或不少人追捧想一尝究竟的出名啤酒会在之后慢慢变成再也没什么人会像当时那样千方百计找酒，出现这种情况的原因不一而足，很可能是因为有更厉害更好喝或更难寻的啤酒出现了，可能是因为酒的素质跌了，可能是因为啤迷要求更高或口味转向其他类型风格了，也有可能是因为酿坊产量提高很多地方可以轻易买到，对一些啤迷来说少了那种奇货可居的“稀有感”等等，虽然听起来有点奇怪，但这是craft beer世界中一个特有现象。
Looking back---KBS in all fairness was not a bad beer---in fact it was a good stout( not using it is because it was already quite some years since i have had another KBS)---but obviously i will never try getting another KBS to be sent in from overseas---because the increased production and distribution meant that it's quite easily available in Asia now---also of course there are/ has been many other awesome stouts out there to be explored---also my palate for stouts has since been evolving. The story of seeking out for a KBS in Belgium is just a process of finding a beer on the road to more awesomeness.