Beer School Graduation: Clinking Glasses on a Bibulous Night of Revelry

RFT Editorial Fellow Matt Kasper's final dispatch from Cicero's beer school. View a slide show.

Time to pour out a little liquor for beer school. It's over. No more I.B.U. updates, no more observations about smooth ale and bitter E.S.B.

Last night we, the graduates, received beer glasses with "Cicero's Beer School Class of 2008" pasted on the side.

We also received a card that allows us to purchase one beer per sitting at a discounted price -- not valid for specials -- until May 1.

Read more about what happened on our last class after the jump.


While we fidgeted in our seats, Karen, the beer school headmistress, announced this year was the fifth graduation.

"I think this was the best semester we've ever had," she said, noting the high attendance levels and female participation.

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Slide Show

As part of our graduation gift, we were each allowed two free bottles of beer. I guzzled a Pyramid Snow Cap and a Dead Guy Ale.

Just as I was settling in for a long sip from my full-bodied winter warmer, the questions started. At beer school graduation you are apparently asked loads of questions and are awarded prizes: mostly t-shirts and beer glasses.

Sadly, but not surprisingly, I came up empty. Oh well. There's always next semester.

Mind you, these were not questions any Joe Six-Pack can answer. You really have to be a regular attendee to know the stuff.

Here's a sample: Where is Arcadia located? Battle Creek, Michigan.

What kind of beer is the Floris Apple? I still don't know the answer to that one other than that it was an apple beer. 

In what city did the founders of St. Peter's find the bottle? (This was a design question. Philadelphia is the right answer.)

I can also now proudly announce that there are 52 draft beers on tap at Cicero's and 155 bottled beers. I learned that, too.

A glass of beer passed around the room served as the mark for who could answer -- if you didn't know the answer you kept passing.

Afterwards, toasted ravioli and other munchy hors d'oeuvres were provided.

As I huddled around with my classmates, reflecting on my beer school memories, I tried not to cry in my beer. I succeeded.

It was a happy time: the night was all about getting down with good drinks. And unlike previous graduations, nothing came up later.

- Matt Kasper



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