Beer Terms That Need to Be Retired

beer terms
Africa Studio/Shutterstock (edited)
Africa Studio/Shutterstock (edited)

Beer is a gift. A great uniter. An infinite source of joy to all who love it. But one thing that's unfortunately not infinite are the words we use when we're talking about it. We're all guilty. Hell, when you write about it as much as we do, you try to use as many different terms for "delicious" as possible. And sometimes, those words go staler than an open Pilsner left out in the sun.

Certain terms outstay their welcome. Or transform from clever wordplay to tired clichés. Or just end up sounding gross when you hear yet another holier-than-thou beer snob slur them out between swigs. At that point, these terms need to be retired. Not necessarily forever -- by Danny Glover standards, "retirement" just means a couple years between every Lethal Weapon movie. But, for the time being, let's consider a less off-putting way to describe mouthfeel and these other played-out terms.

Beer bro
Dan Morris/Thrillist


This is a favorite for people who want to talk about beer without, you know, saying anything. Saying a beer is "drinkable" is like getting a delicious steak and calling it "eatable." It's true! But it sounds pretty dopey.


See "drinkable," with a weird accompanying visual of a duck choking down a huge piece of bread with its head cocked back. You're welcome for that visual cue.


We get that it sounds weird to call a "session IPA" a "light IPA," but for some reason calling something "sessionable" just makes you sound like you're trying to justify drinking a 4% beer at 11am on a weekday. No justification needed, amigo! It also sounds like you secretly want to spontaneously start a jam session in your friend’s garage. But not at 11am. Because that's pretty early to leave mom's basement.


See "sessionable," but spoken at a Sigma Nu party.

Holy shit... any "able"

Here's a challenge. Go to a beer bar and drink any time somebody attaches "able" to a word. You'll last 15 minutes.

Disney Enterprises Inc.


The only way this makes any sense is if you're actually drinking a beer paying homage to the mighty Wookie. Otherwise, it kind of sounds like you’re drinking Skittlebrau.


Your beer evokes a musty old cave? Or you've just transitioned from being a stoner to a beer nerd? Whenever I hear this term, it makes me think you're telling me your beer tastes like somebody's crotch on a hot summer day.

Deuce deuce

Bomber. Please call a 22oz bottle a bomber. Not something that sounds like you're taking two shits in a row.


The taste of sap and burnt weed is not what I want to think about when I drink a beer, let alone when I think of how I'm going to digest it.

Any misogynistic wordplay

It's the '90s, people. We shouldn't have to embarrass our moms by ordering a Mouth Raper just because we want a chewy deuce deuce of something resiny.

Andy Kryza/Thrillist


There's no other word for this. I get it. It's a thing. Talking about beer almost requires it at some point. But that doesn't change the fact that this makes me think of that gross feeling you get when you fall asleep after eating a bunch of taco Doritos (seriously, does anyone even like those?!) after smoking for the first time in a month. When my teeth are wearing sweaters, that's a mouthfeel. Again, you're welcome for the visual.

"Hoptimus," "hoptimal"...

Stop it. Rosie O’Donnell killed bad puns decades ago.


We've reached a magical time where we can finally recognize brewers as artists. But at this point, "artisanal" has absolutely no meaning whatsoever. You might as well use "generic."


Larger debate notwithstanding, calling a brewery a sellout when the only thing that's changed about the operation is the scope is what makes it so easy for people to confuse beer nerds and hipsters.


Some day, when hipsters decide to go retro when talking about craft beer, this could make a comeback. But they'll have to stop drinking tall boys ironically. Which they won't. So let's just roll with craft, unless you're talking to your parents in Indiana. In which case, you should absolutely get some microbrews.

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Andy Kryza is a senior editor at Thrillist who could really use a nice, resiny deuce deuce of something quaffably chewy right now. Follow him to Star Wars cosplay nightmares: @apkryza.