If I order a ginger shandy at McCoy's, will you mock me? If I order a champagne cocktail, will you check the rim for lipstick? If you fill me with beer, will I not become bloated?
The latest in the attempt to drive men and women farther apart at bars (under the guise of bringing us back under one beerfold) comes from England, where a new "bloat resistant" beer is being launched by Molson Coors. Animee is lightly sparkling and less bitter and comes in three distinctly nonbeer flavors: clear filtered, crisp rose and zesty lemon. And, oh yes, it's just for the ladies.
In an era when craft beer has never been more plentiful, and perhaps more widely shipped, the major producers need to stop creating segmented products meant to mimic the very real appeal of small-batch producers. It's not mass individualization that we seek; it's simply one beer that gets our palate.
There is a beer for everyone, man or woman. It may be dark. It may be light. It very well could have fruit extract in it. My place is not to judge your decisions at bars, because you're footing the bill and we are all adults, free to choose what we like. However, when we stray so far afield from what beer is meant to be, it's hard to sit idle.
Animee is not beer. It's a highly conceptualized (and likely thoroughly tested) marketing product that happens to reside in a beer bottle. And when it comes to a "bloat resistant" beer, I could point to the stomachs of a few men around the bar who would likely benefit from said product more than whatever woman was envisioned to be drinking it.
The only woman with whom brewers need to concern themselves is Mother Nature. Find a beer style that suits the season, and you'll have men and women lining up to buy it.