The idea for the 33 Beers sketchbook “came to us after many failed attempts at note-taking during some of the West Coast’s many beer festivals”, says founder Dave Selden. “At some point in these experiences, laziness tended to take over, and the tasting notes stopped writing themselves. The next day, trying to recall the third bourbon barrel-aged porter became an exercise in Twitter and SMS reconstruction (“try the Allagash Curieux quick b4 it runs out!!”). We knew there had to be a better way.”

Thus the 33 Beers Sketchbook was born. 33 Beers is designed for quickly taking down the important details of a beer. A unique “flavor wheel” is included on each of the 33 pages of note-taking space, and provides a quick, visual way of describing a beer’s flavor (and recall it later). Simple check-boxes for serving method (draught, can, bottle, etc.) and other key information (IBUs, ABV, name, price, where you had it and a 5-star rating system) make the beer note-taking simple, straight-forward and quick, so you can get back to the sampling faster.

Best of all, the 33 Beers Sketchbook is both inexpensive ($4 each or 3/$10) and highly portable. Thinner than a cell phone, it fits in the front or back pockets of most pairs of jeans. The book is also printed on 100% recycled paper using US-grown soy-based ink. The book is available at or select retailers nationwide (see the website for an up-to-date list)

The good folks at were kind enough to send me one of their sketchbooks for review (yes FTC, it was free) and I can certainly attest to its portability and ease of use. I’ve personally never been one to take notes on my beers. For me, it was also a matter of: “if it’s not good enough to remember on my own, it’s not worth taking notes”. Or probably more to the point, as Dave said above, whenever I tried to takes notes on what I was tasting at an event, after the first sample or two, my notes would very quickly peter out.

The 33 Beers book, however, is easy to bring with you and since “reviewing” a beer takes a matter of seconds, I could definitely see myself getting into the reviewing habit. If it’s something you’re already fond of doing, than I definitely recommending picking up a sketchbook for yourself (especially since it retails for less than the cost of a pint at the bar). Enjoy!



  1. If this got converted to a Droid/iPhone/Blackberr App it would be great, but is it really that hard to find a small notebook (hell I’ve used beer coasters at a bar) and jot some beer notes in it (my notebook was a give away at some random work related convention)? I do not have a hard time taking notes about beer, it is the transferring of said notes onto the computer, so that they are a) easy to search for or b) blog about, that tends not to happen, thus a mobile application (with export ability) would be great.

    • I agree 100%. While reading this, up until halfway through I figured it was a phone app. Seems an obvious choice in this current market. They would make a hell of a lot more profit too.

  2. This is simple yet clever.

    Reminds me of my days working in market research. They would use the same charts, which they called spider charts, to graphically show a brand profile, i.e. how it was perceived by consumers based on set attributes. When they compared one brands spider chart against another you could clearly tell the difference in perception.

    Beer Cartel

  3. The great thing about this is that it lets you apply gradients to a flavor. You might describe a beer as \sweet\, but how sweet? Compared to what?

    I agree it would be really hand if this was on a computer. You could click the map and it would draw the lines automatically. I’d def. use it.

    Great job guys.

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