When I'm not tasting beer I coach basketball. During the summer we run week long camps. Parents always ask their kids two questions in the car on the way. Wanna guess? As a coach we want to make sure they can answer these same two questions everyday.
Did you have fun? Did you learn anything new? That's it. Two magical questions that will decide if you ever get their money again. Hell, it could decide if you get their friend's money as well. If they can't answer yes to at least one of those two questions we are in trouble. Kids and pets are pretty honest when it comes to what they do and don't like.
What's my point?
People who drink beer are the same way. Hell, you can throw food people in there too. They will always ask two questions. Is it good? Will I like it? That's it. Depending on how you answer they will then follow up with how does it taste? After you fumble around for the right words will they then follow up with questions about aroma, appearance and finish. Rarely do you get this far. I realize that taste is subjective. It still won't keep people from asking those questions. You can give a dissertation on why you think the beer is good or isn't good. It could even include all the other elements for judging a beer. At the end of day though it always goes back to the original two.
Beer geeks do not fret. I understand the appreciation in going on and on about the charteristics of the beer and what makes this beer good, great or awful. I also understand that people have the attention span of a nat. Being a craft beer novice-afficinado I am willing to go either way. How I answer always depends on my audience.
Next time someone ask you about a beer employ the KISS METHOD. Keep it simple stupid. Is it good? Will I like it? And leave it at that.
Avid fan of awesome beer and awesome people. Anyone who has good taste in beer is all right in my book.