Michael Strickland's blog on all things travel: news, deals, destinations, dreams and more.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Beer as a metaphor for travel

I like beer. Pilsner, pale ale, porter, dopplebock, hefeweizen—hell, I've even been known to drink a "Silver Bullet" on a hot summer day at the beach. In my travels, beer has often been a way to connect with the country I'm visiting. Wherever I go, I try to sample the local brew.

In some countries, I've been happily surprised: Japanese beer, for example, tasted far better in Japan than the Japanese imports available back in the States. In other places, the local brew has been less than impressive: in Thailand, Kloster and Singha were best enjoyed in large quantities.

Back home, beer often becomes a way to recapture the magic of travel. After my first trip to Honduras, I sought out Port Royal (a Honduran beer imported to the U.S.) whenever possible. I brought home a case of Creemore Springs lager from a trip to Toronto (sadly, I didn't realize it was unpasteurized until it was too late). Even Peroni, a pretty unremarkable pilsner, can sometimes bring back memories of Italy.

And beer is the central theme of a future, as yet unplanned, trip. I know it's a cliche, but someday I want to make the pilgrimage to Oktoberfest in Munich. It's like going up the Eiffel Tower: a touristy thing to do, but everyone's gotta do it once.

Beer me!

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