Confessions of a Beer Snob
by Joe Korbuszewski

One thing is for sure- the people of our fair city love beer, and in a city that loves beer as much as Tacoma, you are bound to have a handful of connoisseurs. Tacoma's love affair with cheap canned beer goes back as far as the invention of canned beer itself. Today, I talk to a self-proclaimed expert on one of our city's most beloved beverages- Rainier.

Aaron Baker drinks Rainier almost exclusively. I know many people that drink shitty beer, but none have been able to explain why as eloquently as Aaron.

So tell me, Aaron, why Rainier?

"Rainier has a rich and vibrant history in our region dating back to 1884. A lot of people don't realize how good Rainier really is. It's award winning beer."


"Absolutely, in 1987 Rainier won the distinguished silver medal at the Great American Beer festival. It won gold in '90, '98 and 2000. Awards don't lie, dude."

So what exactly is it that makes it so superior to other beers?

"Yakima Valley Hops. Plus, It doesn't give me diarrhea like PBR."


You know there are literally hundreds of brewers that buy their hops from Yakima...

"Yeah, but do they advertise it on the can? No, Joe, they don't."

Fair enough. Is Rainier better in the bottle, can or on draft?

"Personally, I prefer draft, then can, then bottle. But that's just because the bottle caps make me feel dumb."

What do you drink if there's no Rainier at a place?

"Sometimes I'll class it up and drink a Bitburger... or maybe a High Life. But, you know, nothing has the same velvet texture and that perfect balance of American Pilsner malt, Rice and Saaz hops. It's a beautiful thing."

Does it bother you that beer can make you fat?

"You know, some people may say I'm fat or pudgy or whatever. Fuck them. At one point I was fast enough and athletic enough to beat out a legion of other sperm. Like any other great former athlete, I am just sitting back and enjoying the good life."

Wasn't Rainier featured in Twilight?

"Fuck you, Joe. You will NEVER mention that again."

*After our interview was over it occurred to me that I never asked Aaron about Washington's favorite beer style,
The IPA. So I sent him a text message that said-

Tell me your opinion on IPAs.

"They're pretty neat. You can turn the screen into a keyboard and play along with Regina Spektor. The Girls that linger around Valhalla Coffee love it."

No, Dude. Not "iPads". IPAs. India Pale Ale"

"ohhh. Gross."