There were a few questions/comments on social media recently about beer rating---it started when a brewer throw question about if brewer/ brewery owners or those associated with it should be allowed to rate beers( both their own or others)---and then among the comments there were these two:-
"should anyone rate beer at all?"
"should anyone care about others ratings?"
最近craft beer社交媒体上出现这样的对话，有人问说“酿酒师应该被允许发表酒评吗？”， 有人回应笑问说“喝酒的应该写酒评吗？”，另一个人反问“自己喝酒有必要去理会别人口味意见吗？”
If we were to link the above scenario to daily life situations--it's similar to when one refer to movie critics/ratings before deciding if a movie is worth watching--or say referring to food critics opinions/ratings before deciding if a restaurant is worth visiting. There is no right or wrong in these scenario because it's up to individuals what he or she prefer---to refer or to just decides without referring.
同样情况放在craft beer世界里，也会出现习惯先看别人酒评再决定或一直只凭自己感觉选酒的不同群体，或许不熟悉craft beer文化的人会觉得喝啤酒干嘛还需要看或写什么酒评，不过一旦了解不同类型风味啤酒实在多不胜数特质之后就可以理解为什么酒评的出现是自然现象，因为可以感受到的不同类型美味层次佳酿确实多，对啤迷来说，自己写酒评或看别人写酒评都是普遍不过的事。
The situation is not any different in the world of craft beer with some preferring to check other's opinions/ratings first every time when facing with a decision to pick a beer--while some just go with own judgement/mood of the day---as for why people who drink beer care about writing comments/ tasting notes or rate beers---the motives can be a little different for everyone--some would do it because of "pro-need" such as preparing for BJCP beer judge certification---some for own beer tasting record--some because of the need to tick/"level up" for beer ratings apps/game.....
For the uninitiated---beer tasting notes is basically about one's tasting experience with a beer much like when eating food---when tasting/rating a beer---the 5 basic principles always in used are:-
The 5 basic principles are commonly accepted rule of thumb by many---although it must be said that not everyone who rate beer or taking tasting notes would follow 100%---if you are more of a follow the guide type---click here for The Beer Advocate tasting notes guide
但也可以是很个人认知的事，网上可以看到各式各样酒评，这其中有比较专业详尽的，但也有很个人化的意见，大致上也长短不一，比如有类似这种 “开瓶倒入酒杯後颜色呈琥珀色，气泡适中不过很快消散，入口微酸爽中带红葡萄酒木桶余韵，酒体中等，口感有坚果，覆盆子，松针，麦芽糖，尾韵带回甘略微干涩显得不够圆润“等等一个酒评中随时可以出现十多二三十个不同食材味道技术性形容词“长文慎入”型酒评， 又或是简单一两句完结的”感觉像喝不甜的巧克力沙冰，好喝极了。”类型短评。
Obviously there are all kinds of tasting notes/ratings out there in the www---and that's understandable since a same beer will be sampled by many different people who would feel/rate it differently--partly due to personal preference in beer taste or beer styles--and partly could be due to one's understanding/appreciation level of a particular beer/beer style.
In short---tasting notes/ beer ratings are basically other's opinions--of course some are great reviews while some could be a waste of time---while looking up to some good reviews would help newbies in some way--but the most important thing in beer tasting is still about how one understand the taste profile/changes/nuances of a brew by actually drinking one.
There's an old Chinese saying"JIN XIN SHU BU RU WU SHU" "when one only totally believe in books then might as well do without books"---in simple words it means don't just believe blindly what others says---one need to form his/her own opinions too---and that's exactly the scenario when it comes to viewing others tasting notes/beer ratings---end of the day it would still be you who decides after sampling a beer if it's good enough---others ratings can be useful tips or trash opinions wasting your time---and imagining how a beer might taste is certainly NOT the way to go.
After all---a beer is for tasting/drinking--not viewing.