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25
votes
7answers
6k views

What is the strongest beer?

I've always wondered what the strongest beer in the world is and how would taste. Are there reliable historical records of a very strong beer? What would be the highest % alcohol that's Brewable for ...
23
votes
4answers
3k views

When was the first beer ever brewed?

As far as we know, when did humans first brew beer, and where? Around when would you have been able to get your hands on something resembling a modern lager?
22
votes
5answers
22k views

Did everyone drink beer in the middle ages?

I've heard that in the middle ages the water was so bad that everyone drank beer or wine. Is that true? Did pregnant women and small children also drink beer?
21
votes
6answers
8k views

Why do steins have lids?

What's the point of the lid on the beer stein?
20
votes
2answers
850 views

How did South Australia come to have smaller measures of beer?

The "Beer in Australia" article on Wikipedia, includes a table listing the names for various size glasses in the different states. One peculiarity is that some South Australian glasses are one size ...
19
votes
3answers
2k views

Strong drink at the time of St John the Baptist

For those who are familiar with the New Testament, we know the St John the Baptist never drank wine or strong drink. For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor ...
18
votes
7answers
12k views

How was beer brewed before the discovery of Yeast?

Yeast was identified as the cause of fermentation in the 1800s, but beer has been around since long before then. How was fermentation started before the intentional introduction of yeast? Was it all ...
18
votes
4answers
8k views

Why is it a Ginger “Beer” and not a Ginger “Cider”?

It seems that Ginger Beer has no barley, no hops, no wort, no malted anything; so why is it a "beer"? Seems like it is closer to a cider.
17
votes
8answers
658 views

What other beer brands began as fictional but eventually became real?

Duff is the only one of which I am aware. I know there are Game of Thrones inspired brews, but are there any others that originated from works of fiction?
17
votes
2answers
5k views

What are the true origins of the yard of ale?

From here, though they do not cite their source: The origins of the yard of ale date back to the early 17th century, during the reign of King James I (1603-1625). Glass-making in England was then ...
14
votes
4answers
486 views

Has Prohibition ever worked?

Historically, is there any case in which prohibition of alcohol has actually dissuaded its consumption? It failed miserably in the United States, for example...
13
votes
2answers
299 views

Who was Michael Jackson?

Not referring to the internationally famous pop icon, of course. I have heard beer aficionados talk about someone named Michael Jackson, and it's clear that be played an important part in the modern ...
13
votes
1answer
3k views

When in the history of serving beer did it transition from a warm beverage to a cold one?

I know that there may be some debate raging over this today, depending on what side of the Atlantic one is on, but there seems to be a clear point in history when beer went from being enjoyed warm to ...
11
votes
1answer
4k views

What is the difference between Trappist beer and Abbey Beer?

Abbaye Bier (Abbey Beer) refer to monastic beer brewed by monks. And there is almost Trappist beer brewed by monks but specifically from Trappist monasteries. But what is the difference in terms of ...
11
votes
2answers
7k views

When and where did shandies first become popular and why do they get such a bad reputation?

I was recently at a local craft beer festival and I tried a few shandies (my favorite was Time Traveler) and now I'm starting to get into them as well. But I've heard mixed things about their history. ...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

What is the difference between historical beer and 'modern' beer?

This question might be a bit broad, but what I'm trying to understand is generally how the brewing process and the subsequent end result differed before the early-modern to modern era. I had asked a ...
10
votes
1answer
189 views

When the Trappist foundation was founded in 1997, were there breweries which didn't get the label although they succeeded to the conditions?

So from a previous question I learned that the Trappist foundation was founded in 1997 by 6 Belgian breweries one from the Netherlands and one from Germany. But were there other breweries which ...
10
votes
2answers
1k views

'X' marks to indicate quality?

The iconic mass-produced lager in Queensland, Australia, is XXXX (pronounced FourEx). On their label, they tell a story about how historically beers were marked with a number of Xs to indicate their ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

What uses do hops have outside of brewing?

Do hops have (or had in the past) any use outside of brewing beer? I mean: In the question of dating first modern beers we have the first record of cultivating hops predating the first record of use ...
9
votes
1answer
2k views

ABV of small beer?

I understand that a much weaker version of beer, called 'small beer', was historically drunk as a safe way to drink liquid. This was at a time when drinking plain water might well have made you sick, ...
9
votes
1answer
267 views

“Green Schlitz” myth: Was the beer green, or the flakes?

I am editing an academic economics paper (I'm a grad student), and I ran across the following line: Schlitz changed preservatives, which led to green flakes in the beer. The paper references an ...
8
votes
6answers
1k views

Why do France and Italy have so much lower beer consumption than their neighbors?

Consider the map of per capita beer consumption by county from Wikipedia: Zooming in on Europe, something that jumps out is that France and Italy consume much less beer than their neighbors: What ...
8
votes
5answers
1k views

Why is beer regulated differently than other types of alcohol?

In the US there are tons of rules about alcohol that vary widely from state to state and at the federal level. For example you can brew your own beer in most states but you have to have a license for ...
8
votes
1answer
654 views

Why is it called “porter”?

Stouts are stout, Pale Ales use pale malt, but where did the name porter come from?
8
votes
1answer
230 views

What is “gruit?” Why aren't there many beers on the market containing it?

I have heard of something called 'gruit' which seems to sometimes be used in brewing beer. What is it? Why are there very few beers on the market containing gruit? What are some of the more popular ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Did Henry VIII really outlaw hops?

I recently read Stephen Buhner's "Sacred and Herbal Healing Beers" wherein he claimed that hops were a fairly new way to bitter beer in the renaissance and that in England Henry VIII outlawed them. ...
8
votes
3answers
725 views

What type of beer should be used in making Beer Soup (Polewka Piwna)

I've seen quite a few recipes for this old Polish soup based on beer, egg, cheese and some other ingredients but all of them call for "beer" or at best "light beer". I don't doubt most make a rather ...
8
votes
1answer
156 views

Japanese beers historic evolution

I read yet this on Wikipedia and some small articles. The articles didn't satisfy my curiosity. My question is: What is the history of brewing in Japan? Please, take in mind following sub-...
8
votes
1answer
138 views

Who made or makes spirits from poisonous Heracleum?

Heracleum or cow parsnips are high-latitude plants that can produce severe inflammation in humans. They seem like the last thing someone would want to ingest. However: Flora on Kamchatka: flowers and ...
8
votes
1answer
492 views

Why is Guiness so prolific in South-East Asia?

One thing I have noticed around South-East Asia is that the primary affordable dark beer is Guiness. This appears to be due to high beer tariffs and the fact that Guiness has breweries all over (for ...
7
votes
10answers
1k views

Does anyone here still use bitters as medicine? Which ones do you use and for what ailments?

Bitters are known to have medicinal qualities. I've never used them beyond making killer cocktails... But, I've noticed that orange bitters, in particular, will imbue me with an added vigor or gusto, ...
7
votes
2answers
4k views

Is there a modern wine that is designed to resemble Noah's wine?

After seeing this question once again on this site (Is there a modern wine that is designed to resemble ancient Roman winemaking?) sometime back and I became interested in knowing if there is a modern ...
7
votes
2answers
256 views

Is the saying true that drinking absinthe drives a person insane?

Absinthe has been said to cause insanity, permanent brain-damage and/or hallucinatory state. Is this accurate?
7
votes
1answer
279 views

When, where and why did the tradition of clinking glasses and saying “cheers” or “to your health” first start?

Is it possible to know where, when and how the custom of clinking glasses (usually filled with beer or wine) originated, while saying "cheers" or "to your health"? Do any historical documents support ...
7
votes
1answer
235 views

First known/recognized brewery?

What's the name of the first known/recognized brewery that produced beer (that would be recognized as beer also today)?
6
votes
1answer
336 views

Do wines from grafted vine stock taste different from non-grafted?

The Phylloxera plague of the 19th century devastated the grape stocks of Europe. However, Charles Valentine Riley and J. E. Planchon grafted the vines (Vitis vinifera) onto rootstock of an American ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

What is the strongest alcoholic drink that existed during the Middle Ages in Europe?

What is the strongest alcoholic drink that was drank within the European nations during the Middle Ages (5th to the 15th century)?
6
votes
1answer
265 views

Traditional drinks for celebrating the Feast of the Epiphany?

Most places celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany on January 6. Are there any local, traditional drinks that exist that people have as a way celebrating this feast in a local and traditional manner? ...
6
votes
1answer
372 views

What are some of the historical ways that people have employed to conceal alcohol on their person?

What are some of the historical ways that people have employed to conceal alcohol on their person? We have all heard of the prohibition of 1920 to 1933 in the United States and other countries. How ...
5
votes
3answers
299 views

Why are there so few “real” trappists and why are six from them from belgium

I was wondering why there are so few trappists and how is it that from the eleven trappists 6 of them are from Belgium. Why aren't the breweries more spread over the world? Does it have something do ...
5
votes
3answers
202 views

Can wine be made from all edible fruits?

I am an amateur in the topic, so I was wondering, can all edible fruits be turned into a fruit wine? Why have grapes historically become the main fruit for wine making over other fruits?
5
votes
4answers
1k views

Why does Belgium have such a rich and profound brewing culture?

I discovered craft beers some years ago, but I've been always been amazed by Belgian brewing culture, which is so different from German and Great Britain traditions. Why is it that beer has such ...
5
votes
3answers
4k views

Who invented beer and when? [duplicate]

It is known who invented the beer? And when was beer invented? Links: History of Beer at Wikipedia When was the first beer ever brewed?
5
votes
1answer
267 views

When and why did wineries start diluting wine?

Commercial wineries sometimes (often?) dilute the grape juice with water before fermentation. This is done (according to that page) because the grapes have too much sugar and can kill off the yeast ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

The King's Shilling

I recently purchased a new pewter Tankard with a glass bottom and a silver shilling encased between the two bits of glass. After a little bit of research, I discovered that this was one of the ways ...
5
votes
1answer
190 views

Is it true that Rodenbach beer should be drank with a shot of cherry liquor?

I was in Libramont back when I was roaming around Belgium. And hitting a pub next to station where people were having lunch, I ordered a Rodenbach beer (http://www.beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/216/...
5
votes
3answers
6k views

What beers or other drinks did Native Indians brew in the Americas prior to the arrival of Europeans in 1492?

What beers and other drinks did Native Indians brew in the Americas prior to the arrival of Europeans, with Christopher Columbus in 1492? The fact that alcohol was unknown in the Americas is only a ...
4
votes
4answers
383 views

What is the definition of Beer or the Beer “family” of drinks

I was picked up by someone on another SE site (unrelated) when I used the phrase "Some beers, like mead...(blah blah)" - Apparently a mead isn't a beer. I'm good with that in the pedantic sense that ...
4
votes
3answers
115 views

What is “Five Fruits” in this 1920s cocktail recipe?

From Shake 'Em Up! A Handbook of Polite Drinking (1930), page 46: GIN PUNCH NUMBER ONE 2 quarts of grapefruit juice 2 quarts of gin and one quarter cup of Five Fruits or Grenadine ...
4
votes
3answers
310 views

Was beer conceived to be a bitter drink?

In all the years of my life (except when I was a minor), I've never tasted beer that's not bitter. So was beer conceived to be a bitter drink? What factors in the bitter taste of beer?