Becoming a father changes your life forever. The changes are profound and rewarding and yeah sometimes challenging.
This blog has been on hiatus since the start of 2018, when I became a father for the third time, and this got me thinking about how becoming a dad has changed the way I drink beer.
Here are some ways being a dad has changed my relationship with beer.
I don’t go out often but when I do I like to enjoy good beer
Sorry to go all Dos Equis on y’all but this is true, when I go out I don’t want to waste the opportunity. Good company and good beer at relaxed venues where I can enjoy said good beer and good company is a must for any night out. This selectiveness generally leads to more satisfying outcomes anyway.
I visit breweries with my family
Breweries are usually great family-friendly venues as they are spacious, offer reasonable food and are open during the daytime. The smarter venues out there have realised the value of making families welcome and usually include some features like toys, a play area, highchairs, and changing tables, all of which come in handy.
I’ve listed some of my favourite breweries and most of those I attended with the family. Stomping Ground in Collingwood is probably my top pick of all due to the excellent playground.
Taking your family out to a ‘bar’ may seem controversial (pro tip: if you see someone post on this topic, don’t read the comments) but if you do it the right way it can be a pleasant family outing as well as an opportunity to discover some fresh new favourite brews.
I try to spend less money on beer
The financial hit that often comes with being a parent can take a toll on beer lovers. Craft beer can become an expensive habit and when you start to feel the hit of a single income combined with more expenses than before it’s can be hard to justify high weekly beer expenses.
For me, I’ve learnt to pick my spots. For regular drinking it helps to stock a cheap affordable beer in the fridge to reduce costs. Those Dan Murphys card promo 6 packs for $10-15 can also be pretty tempting too.
But for me the whole fun of drinking beer is when I try something new and different so I try to find the right occasion for good beers, saving up the special ones for celebrations, a weekend treat or a bottle share with mates.
I make sure more than ever to celebrate special occasions with good beer
In my pre-dad days, I would have a good beer whenever. It could have been a Monday night and I might have cracked open an aged Belgian lambic just because I could.
Now if I were to crack open a great rare beer like that it’s more likely to be on a special occasion. Perhaps something like the birth of my child, an anniversary, or if I’m desperate there’s sure to be a International <insert some day that gives me an excuse to drink> Day to celebrate.
Props to those living their best life and popping whales on a Monday night, but I do take pleasure in saving great beers to savour for special moments that are worthy of celebration.
Most recently, after the birth of my 3rd son, I celebrated with a bottle from the revered NSW brewer Wildflower. Fact – life has some great moments and those moments are made even better with good beer.
I drink quality over quantity
A boozy weekend knocking back a heap of beers isn’t prudent when you have to parent. So drinking less, drinking better is the name of the game. Drinking less helps you to afford better beer, to be more present and appreciate what you do drink, and to still be a responsible dad.
Parenthood may signal the end of dreams of unbridled individual freedom but it doesn’t signal the end of personal enjoyment. It just makes the moments when I can enjoy things like good beer more precious.