I thought it was about time I wrote a generic post about all 3 subjects I've aimed (and sometimes failed) to cover on this blog because, well, I've been thinking.
We all have different tastes. I like one thing, you like another. You may have liked something, and dislike it now, and vice versa.
I was thinking how our tastes change and want to share with you some of the things I previously hated but now love.
Back when I first got into good beer, I hated stouts. Yup, you heard that right. I'd try stouts but I always found them way too strong for my tastes, especially considering I used to drink really milky coffee. Then about a year and a half ago my boss started only buying UHT milk for the office, which is fucking disgusting, so I decided to start drinking black coffee. I enjoyed it, despite it just being Nescafe or whatever and remembered "Hang on, stouts are like coffee. Maybe I'll like them now" so I started trying more and more, and I fell in love. I suddenly understood stouts.
Barley Wines were another style I couldn't drink. Found English ones way too sweet and boozy, but then discovered that American ones like Sierra Nevada Bigfoot & Anchor Old Foghorn were a bit more subdued and less boozy which was great!
And then, obviously, it's the category that a lot of people don't get on with until one day... sours. I tried Cantillon Rose De Gambrinus on keg in Brewdog Camden a couple of years back and fucking hated it. It was basically like pickled cherries. Awful stuff. I really didn't get it. Then one day about a year later I said I was coming to London and my good friend Glyn said "I've got a bottle of 2005 Cantillon Gueuze I want to share with you. Trust me, you'll love it". So I met him in The Rake, we had some other beers and shared the bottle and it was instant love. I somehow understood what I hadn't previously 'got'. I loved it, and now I can't get enough of it!
Back between the ages of about 12-19, all I listened to was heavy metal in its various forms. Classic Metal, NWOBHM, Death Metal, Black Metal, Folk Metal, Power Metal, Thrash Metal. You name it, all I listened to was metal. It was frankly quite ridiculous. I wouldn't give anything else a chance.
Then one day I suddenly woke up and realised that I was so narrow minded, I needed to explore other genres. I started with hip-hop as I loved rap/nu-metal like (Hed) P.E., Linkin Park etc as well as things like Run DMC/Aerosmith - Walk This Way, and Public Enemy/Anthrax - Bring The Noise, so I started with those. I discovered that the Public Enemy version of Bring The Noise is far superior to the collaborative metal effort, and soon It Takes A Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back, and then progressed to N.W.A and the ilk, before getting into the underground and the UK hip-hop scene. I realised that hip-hop can be as skilled and intricate as those heavy metal chaps on guitars.
What's way more of a shock to my 14 year old self is probably my current favourite musical artist, Mayer Hawthorne. My 14 year old self is screaming at me shouting "You've turned into a fucking pussy, man. You're listening to love songs. What happened to you? You used to be cool, listening to Cannibal Corpse songs about sodomy!". What happened was I discovered this chap, as well as Aloe Blacc, on Stones Throw records just as they were releasing their first records. I fell in love after hearing "Your Easy Lovin' Ain't Pleasin' Nothin'" and I instantly had to get the album... I ordered the CD album of 'A Strange Arrangement' online and then, in a pure state of shock, I found the beautiful Double Vinyl Edition in the wonderful Soundclash Records in Norwich. After that, it's all been up - How Do You Do & (the album I originally hated but now loved) 'Where Does This Door Go?'. These amazing nu-soul sounds. His awesome voice that I'm somewhat envious of, and the lyrics that can even make this angry bastard go a bit soppy.
Food is a hard one to change my mind on. For me, it's completely different to beer as there are generally much more fucking vile flavours out there.
I hated Blue Cheese until a few months ago. I thought it was absolutely vile. And then I ate it with a stout of some description, in The Plasterers in Norwich, and somehow I was converted - although I should probably note that I can't eat it on its own. It absolutely has to be with a stout.
Olives - I used to love green olives, and hate black but now it's completely reversed! I can't eat green olives for shit anymore but you give me pizza or a subway sandwich covered in black olives and I'm all over it!
Humans are fascinating - how what we see, smell, hear, touch and taste is so different and constantly changing. We go through phases. I'm sure there are things that you've enjoyed in the past and hate now, and vice versa and I'd love for you to share for me in the comments below!
As much as our tastes change, there are some things I know for sure though... I will always hate mushrooms, Skrillex and Greene King IPA.