With UCLA’s Craft Beer Class, You Can Get Course Credit for Drinking

Journalist Tomm Carroll leads field trips to breweries, conducts tastings, and teaches the history of the craft brewing renaissance

The beer nerd’s dilemma: You’re at a beer bar; you hear someone dropping false beer knowledge on unsuspecting victims in your vicinity. Do you tap them on the shoulder and correct them, thereby preventing the proliferation of beer bullshit? Or do you opt not to be that guy?  

For veteran beer journalist Tomm Carroll, the choice is clear. “I am definitely that guy,” says Carroll. And now Carroll’s taking that call to education even further. Starting in late March, he’ll teach an extension class for UCLA called A Class of Beer: An Overview of the Craft Brewing Renaissance. (Let no beer pun go unused.)

“You have to be a beer lover to take this class,” says Carroll. But beyond that, the only prerequisite is that you want to learn.

The syllabus points to a wide-ranging crash course in craft beer. You’ll get a taste of history—ever wonder why craft beer lagged the California wine revolution? There will be classes on different malts and hops, how to pair beers with food, guest speakers from the industry, and each class will include beer tastings.

And, oh yeah, field trips! Carroll will take his students to Monkish Brewing Company in Torrance, Mohawk Bend beer bar in Echo Park, and Select Beer bottle shop in Redondo Beach.

The class is filling up fast, but if you miss out, there’s a waiting list. And the more demand that the beer curious show, the more supply of future beer classes we will get.