One of the big things I learned from my trip to Melbourne is that it is possible for me to really enjoy good beer without getting a hangover so bad that it wipes me out for the next day.
I’d had a few recent experiences of going to a beery event one night, overindulging and feeling like utter crap the next day. And let me tell you youngsters, hangovers get worse the older you get. So I approached Good Beer Week and GABS as a sort of experiment. I set up a few non-negotiable rules
1) I had to eat a decent, or at least filling, lunch and dinner every day;
2) I had to drink a sports drink while I was beering up rather than waiting til I’d finished;
3) I had to be smart about how much I drank, because it was about enjoyment, not getting tanked; and,
4) I had to drink a Berocca and extra water before bed-time.
What I wanted to discover was if these methods made any difference, if my previous hangovers were largely avoidable. And the answer is an undeniable “yes”. Sure, I woke up feeling like I had beers the night before, but I wasn’t nauseous, didn’t have a huge headache and was easily able to head out into the world. It’s a series of steps I’ll be following at every beery event from now on.
I was also keeping an eye on my unique beer count on Untappd. When I headed down to Melbourne, my unique beer count on Untappd sat at 522. Prone to overplanning as I am, I even thought about how many new uniques I’d clock up during my visit.
Weighing up the fact that I was planning on being a responsible adult, that I wasn’t going to try and manda every keg I saw and that the aim wasn’t to party until dawn, I figured a reasonable number to shoot for was about 45. That took into account the 30 beers I planned on sampling at GABS and left space for another 15 in the remaining day and a half. I truly reckoned 45 beers in 2.5 days was a big effort.
At the end of those 2.5 days, my unique beer count sat at 589 – a increase of 67 new beers. That came as quite a surprise, especially given that I managed that without suffering any hangovers.
So 67 new beers and no hangovers equals a very successful trip to Melbourne.