The Alphabet Project

B is for Beer


When I embarked on this project with Adam, I knew that I’d struggle with some weeks. I just didn’t expect it to happen so early on. 

Beer was the first topic that I thought of 18 months ago and I’ve been looking forward to it ever since. But when it came to dropping marks on the canvas, I drew a blank. “What is the point of it?” I asked myself repeatedly and all I could come up with was “I need a beer viz”. That’s not a good enough reason to start a viz let alone finish in my book!

When I wasn’t staring at data in excel or a blank canvas in Tableau, I was trawling through websites trying to find an anniversary present for my other half. What’s the one thing he loves more than the dogs? “You?” I hear you ask…thanks, but no…it’s beer! 

And suddenly the penny dropped. I could use the data he’s been collecting for years to inform a selection of beers for him! Thoughtful and viz-worthy. 

My Viz

So I got cracking and downloaded his Untappd data (I had to upgrade his account which cost $5 but hey, he’s worth it) and started removing columns that were incomplete. It left me with location data about the breweries, beer names, ratings (Sandford’s and global) and %ABV. That’s enough to make an informed decision right? 

I plugged in the brewery locations for the beers he’s recorded and identified a few high ranking countries (Spain and New Zealand stood out to me), but also some of the countries missing from the list (how has he not tried a German beer?!)

Then it was on to the style of beer. Topping the list of favourites was a Barleywine Ale, so a new barleywine ale is going straight on the shopping list. Next up, were fruit beers. They’re definitely going on my list because I love a fruit beer! But also standing out were the number of IPAs, sours and pale ales that he’s tried. Sure, they don’t rank at the top of the list, but if he’s constantly picking them, he must at least think that he likes them…

Finally, I wanted to see if he prefers a high or low ABV. I had a hunch that he would prefer the boozier beers, so I was pleasantly surprised to see that the highest rated beer was only 4.4%. Unfortunately the spread of scores didn’t really help me when it came to a shopping list, but I felt that I had enough to go on from the other bits of information.

So there we have it, I’ve got a list of 6 beers to buy for him. Fingers crossed he likes them! But if not, I can totally blame him right?? It is his data after all!

What’s next?

Next week we’re onto letter C and it’s Adam’s choice for the topic…here’s hoping the next viz is less of a struggle! 

1 thought on “B is for Beer”

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