Beer Theory: The Opening

Beer Theory is a monthly series that exists where geekdom relents. It’s the cross between prose, poetry, philosophy, and spilling a beer on your keyboard. Look for it the last Friday of every month.

Empties - Photo Credit: Breckenridge Brewery

Empties – Photo Credit: Breckenridge Brewery

Beer Theory exists where geekdom relents. It straddles the line between concept and practicality and begins in the simplest of places: your most recent beer.

Aside from the commotion, attraction, distractions, high-fives, new-found (if only for a night) friendships, snacks, dance, and arguments, it’s the feeling of limitless excitement that draws us to the coldest, unopened beer within one’s fridge. It’s a compulsion: an inquisitive, addictive nature of anxious, disposable want. Yet within this want lies the answer to why we’re so prone to leave a steady supply of – what have come to be known as – “wounded soldiers” at every party we’ve attended.

We open. We sip. We smile. We neglect.

Photo Credit: Josh Clauss

Photo Credit: Josh Clauss

Be it the cork-and-cage of a cellar-aged bottle, the crown of a sought-after bomber, or the snap of a Coors Original lid, we’ve always been drawn to the celebration surrounding the opening of a packaged alcoholic beverage. In turn, that opening itself brings a newfound level of happiness or escape, and it’s within that spark of hollow blissfulness that we find the nature of our short-sighted desires.

We open beers when we’re happy, and we’re prone to open more when we’re pissed off. We love to crack a cold one after a hook up or break up, in celebration or discomfort… or both. We want till we want till we can’t want no more. But what we find, more often than not, is after the initial opening of the vessel, the speculation hits its end-point, and the aura of the beer disappears. That goddamned beer was full, cold, carbonated, and ours only, and once it’s opened (warming by the second), it’s a burden to hold within our oft-sweaty palms. It’s less of a beer than it was ten seconds prior, and it’s very likely it’ll end up – half-to-three-quarters-full – on any flat surface beside someone’s abandoned cell phone in the garage, only to be found and emptied by a hung-over (and one would hope, still-intoxicated) host amongst their post-party reclamation.

Photo Credit: Jess Hunter

Photo Credit: Jess Hunter

Wounded soldiers will always exist, and their destinies may or may not be determined by those caught up in the spirit of celebration, but in the basis of beer theory, it’s best to acknowledge the difference between a beer cracked with reckless abandon than one opened with the intention of thoughtful consumption.



About Jesse Brookstein

A product of Clinton, NY (a quaint little drinking village on the outskirts of Utica), Jesse quickly grew to appreciate all things beer. After a few years driving beer trucks and a brief internship at Brewery Ommegang, he moved to Colorado in 2006 to further his career in the craft brewing industry. In 2007, he joined the packaging team at Avery Brewing Company in Boulder, CO, and held the post of Packaging Manager for three years before resigning in 2014 to open Call to Arms Brewing Company in Denver with two of his former Avery colleagues.