Friday’s are not what they used to be anymore. At first glance it seemed amusing: a simple Untappd user checked into a beer by Evil Twin, detected diacetyl and put that in his review. That review was a sign of the times: written as if by a blind bat suffering from dyslexia, Chris B. (the Untappd user in question) defied all rules of spelling and grammar bravely, just like in most WhatsApps and text messages I receive from anyone under forty. For example, he spelled diacetyl as diacytle. It took a very nasty, arrogant turn though, when Jeppe Jarnit-Bjergsø (owner of Evil Twin) caught the post.
Jeppe Jarnit-Bjergsø, the twin brother of Mikkel Borg-Bjergsø (the Danish naming laws are of a highly psychedelic nature) did not take the post lightly and went all-out on his Facebook page. His disciples, the pall-bearers of the evil twin, then started tumbling over each other with memes in which they made mock of Chris B. Other pall-bearers wrote items on internet with intriguing titles like “Evil Twin Brewmaster is Brutally Taunting a Know-It-All Online Reviewer” and “CRAFT BEER NERD GETS OWNED BY LEGENDARY BREWER, ENTIRE INTERNET” in which they sided with Jeppe.
But what did they side with, honestly? They sided with arrogance! The lashing was all about the wrong spelling of the word ‘diacetyl’ and Jeppe was quoted saying “it was pleasurable to bring attention to the foolishness of reviews in general, but especially when people try to use weird shit in reviews to sound more knowledgeable.” That is, in all honesty, the kind of arrogance you would not expect to come from a craft brewer (pall-bearers are pall-bearers and they will change palls immediately if that serves them better).
Whether or not the spelling was bad, it started with a consumer who believed he picked up diacetyl in a beer – which is not supposed to be in there. Now whether or not Chris B. was right, essentially he is making a quality complaint and every brewer in his right mind would want to respond to that, apologizing and perhaps offering a replacement. Faults usually can be avoided, but never completely – beer is a living product. And a brewer who owns his kettles will never walk away from that. But here’s where the boys and the men of brewing are being separated: Evil Twin is a simple marketing concept, renting space in the kettles of 10 of the best breweries in the world (don’t forget to download our press kit) and frankly, not much more.
Does Jeppe not care about beer? I would not go so far as to say that, but his remark on another Untappd user (Kjell H.) is telling. I do believe, however, that stating there’s foolishness in reviewing because of typos is willfully denying the underlying statement made. I do see where Jeppe finds it is pleasurable to do so: he has, again, succeeded in finding a clever way of marketing one of his beers (not one of his brews) and get a shitload of attention for someone else’s work. While cashing in on it, many pall-bearers enjoy walking in the rays of Jeppe’s sun while somewhere there is a guy called Chris B., wondering what would have happened if he made no spelling mistakes. I wonder with him, and hope the next time a brewer gets word of diacetyl in one of her of his beers the first response will not be to check the spelling, but to question how that off-flavor came into the beer in the first place.