Do you buy your consumables with your eyes?
Do you have the thoughts that certain supermarkets are better than others, without even going in the ones you'd be so quick to swear away from? I bet you do sometimes, I know I do.... hell I shop at Waitrose.
Price may have something to do with it. Say there's a ready meal for sale in Tesco and the same ready meal was available in Netto, differently packaged, but exactly the same - minus a couple of quid for one. Would you think they were the same? Which would you feel comfortable buying?
The same can be said for beer. A pint of Black Sheep may cost so and so in one high-street pub and quite a bit less in a pub or bar, such as Weather Spoons for example. Does that mean the Weather Spoons Black Sheep is any worse because it's cheaper? Some would say yes, some would say they're not bothered.
This all depends of course on many things, such as cellar-man-ship/quality control etc, etc....
So let's move it on a bit to the packaging.
As many of you reading this will be seasoned beer drinking geeks, has there been times when you will judge a bottle of beer, before actually drinking it, judging it purely on its packaging and making preconceptions in your mind of what it will be like?/will you enjoy it?/and will you even buy it? I know I have in the past.
I think it's time we all stopped pre-judged beers/bars/pubs before actually drinking them or stepping into them. Some of the best times and beers I've ever had are ones I've never had before and places I've never been too.
By all means though, lower your expectations if you like, it just makes it so much better when you find something good!
Get out there, when you see that old boring looking beer with its drab label on the shelves, buy it for once, it may really surprise you. I'll say the same for bars an pubs. Don't just avoid them because of what other people have told you of them, go find out for yourself!