Reviewed by Jen K.

The author describes 500 Beers as “a user’s guide to the world of beer”. I thought that sounded pretty neat and maybe it could be exactly the sort of thing to teach me a bit more about beer. The author also states that this will be the only beer compendium you’ll ever need. In case you were wondering, a compendium is is a concise, yet comprehensive compilation of a body of knowledge. In this case, this is everything you need to know about beer.

The introduction includes a key page that explains how to use this book. There are four components to each listed beer: a flag icon that shows from where the beer hails, the suggested serving temperature, the percentage of alcohol per volume and two scales that show the beer’s color and intensity. The beers are grouped according to type, beginning with light and moving to dark. The contents page lists the ten categories and each chapter begins with a nice explanation on that type of beer.

[amazonify]1416207880[/amazonify]I was really hoping that each beer would have been assigned a rating. That way, you could pick up the book, read the ratings and race right out to buy the highest rated beers. I also would have enjoyed reading the praises and criticisms of each beer. Instead, the author’s descriptions center around the specific aromas and flavors present. That does seem like a more practical approach, but I would have appreciated more personal insights from the author.

Most of the beer descriptions were quite detailed and a little bit over my head. I think you would have to be a more of a beer connoisseur than I am to really understand and appreciate this book. Nevertheless, if you know of a serious beer drinker or someone who is fascinated by the subject, this may very well be the perfect gift!

Zak Avery’s website can be found at http://www.thebeerboy.co.uk/pith.html if you are looking to do more beer research.

Jen lives in Michigan with her husband and five year old son. She writes reviews of children’s book on her blog, FIRR-Kids. She enjoys trying new recipes and using her baking as an excuse to add more cookbooks to her collection.

This book was provided free of any obligation by Sellers Publishing. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.