Confessions of a Beer-chelor

Rayon Vert, will you accept this rose?
As some of you already know, I got divorced back in mid-October. This life change thrust me back into the dating scene, which has been mildly horrifying because A) I consider myself a pretty awkward person in general and B) after a LONG relationship, I don't even remember what dating was like before (you're supposed to ask women out on AOL Instant Messenger, right?). But there's one much bigger problem that has reared it's hoppy head in my dating experiences for the past few months:

I've become a craft beer drinker.

I say it's a problem in the sense that I can't help but factor beer drinking habits into my evaluations of a woman as a future girlfriend/spouse. If I take a girl out and her drink of choice is a Bud Light, I'm pretty sure I develop a noticeable twitch and a little devil appears on my shoulder hissing at me to run away as fast as I can. At this point, it's a natural reaction, and while it might be a little judgmental, I think it's somewhat justified.

Maybe this initially seems like an act of snobbery, but it's really not. I'm not expecting to find a woman who has 6 saucers up at the Flying Saucer, homebrews in her spare time and has a plentiful stock of Cantillon in her cellar (but if you're out there, give me a call!). Really, I'm just looking for a woman with an open mind when it comes to beer. Given the fact that a major part of my personal/social life revolves around craft beer bars/events/etc., it would be nice to have someone with a similar interest in the beer scene or an openness to explore it. Someone who doesn't immediately label all stouts as 'heavy'. Someone who can appreciate a good IPA. And if I'm really lucky, someone who won't stick her nose up at the phrase 'sour beer'.

It's something that I have an internal battle with often. Sometimes I worry that I'm pigeonholing myself and that I could potentially be missing out on some great women because I'm so focused on what they're drinking. But, at the same time, I told myself after getting divorced that when I got into my next relationship, I wasn't going to settle. If I'm not going to settle in other aspects of a future mate, why should beer be any different? Granted, I should be paying equal attention to things like drug habits, criminal tendencies, mental health, etc. but beer deserves to be up there in the list of considerations.

The other problem in all of this is the fact that, well, single women that drink good beer are hard to find around these parts. Go into a craft beer bar on any given night and the male to female ratio seems like its usually about 50 to 1. In a metropolitan area that is already notorious for sucking when it comes to the dating scene, I'm immediately making it that much harder for myself. On visits to cities like Denver and Milwaukee, it seemed like women drinking good beer were out in full force, but in Kansas City the numbers seem paltry compared to those towns. Girls that swig BMC beers come a dime a dozen in this area, so what's a single guy to do? Is it worth the time to try to "convert" a macro drinker and suggest new beers to try to broaden their horizons?

So what's the verdict? Am I being too picky? Or is my beer judgment justified?

For any other single guys that are craft beer drinkers: are beer drinking habits a big consideration for you while dating?

And for those of you that are in relationships with women that appreciate good beer: is it as great as I'm imagining it to be, or does it actually turn out to be a pain in the ass because they steal all your beer?

Ladies, feel free to chime in too!

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