10 Fun Facts About Beer
Beer is one of the oldest and most popular American beverages around. Just about anyone who has consumed any kind of alcohol has probably at the very least tasted beer. It is one of the most inexpensive yet loved alcoholic beverages in the industry. Beer comes in hundreds of varieties and flavors, combinations and levels of alcohol contents. While it is very popular in all areas of the world, people most often only pay attention to it when they are drinking it. However, there are 10 not so well known facts about beer that are interesting, compelling and would be fun to share with your drinking buddies sometime.
1. Beer and Beards
Any guy out there with a beard or mustache can tell you that it is a real challenge to drink beer. That aside, one such guy with a face full of hair discovered it is possible to collect yeast from his beard to make beer. While yeast is normally collected from rotting bits of nature, the idea of creating it from a man’s facial hair is actually quite possible. Appetizing? Probably not, but feasible nonetheless.
2. Foam: It Isn’t So Bad After All
Another distasteful thing to bring up about beer is probably the foam. Anyone who is a beer lover probably excludes the foam from the equation and kicks it over to the side of downright hatred. However, the foam is quite necessary. As a matter of fact, the more foam a beer has the more flavor it will have as well. Be prepared to drink a tasteless and dull beer if there’s no foam lurking at the top.
3. The Family Resemblance Between Beer and Pot
Little do most of us know, but beer and marijuana are actually very similar. Parts of beer, such as the hops, come from the Cannabaceae family. Taking a wild guess and assuming that cannabis stavia, aka marijuana, comes from the same place would be right on target. That being said, people have tried to make marijuana beer and it hasn’t worked. Although they come from the same family they are too different to be interchanged and used in substitute of the other.
4. Taxidermy Beer
A company in the United Kingdom came up with a beer that comes inside a dead animal. The company, BrewDog, puts their beer inside a bottle which is fitted inside either a squirrel or a stoat. To their advantage however, they have created a beer with the highest alcohol content in the world at a record 55% alcohol volume.
5. Oldest Beer Alive
The world’s oldest drinkable beer was discovered in 2010 in Finland. It was found on a 19th-century wrecked ship, fully preserved. Due to fermenting of course, it had a very acidic aftertaste. Scientists in Finland are working hard to figure out what the century’s old concoction was so they can re-create it and sell it. If they are able to figure out the recipe they plan to call it “Shipwreck Beer” and of course brand the name and sell it, too.
6. Michael Jackson, Beer Hunter
There was a beer scholar in Britain whose name was Michael Jackson. He researched and sought out beers that had long since been forgotten, wrote articles about them and made them known once again. His nickname was none other than “the Beer Hunter”, aptly named for his pursuit and love of the frothy drink. He won many awards in his lifetime for his creativity and positive exploitation of beers from all over the world. Not only did he re-introduce beers of old, but he discussed beers according to their culture and style as well.
7. H20 Quality
Water is a crucial component in beer. Without water expect that there would never have been such a thing as beer invented, obviously. What very few novice beer makers understand however is that the water quality is key to producing a nice tasting beer. Tap water just will not do. Many breweries choose to craft their beers near clean and pure water sources. The better the water, the better the beer.
8. Building Pyramids…Intoxicated
During the time when the Egyptians were building their massive pyramids, they actually drank beer more than they drank water. The level of bacteria in the water in Egypt was terrible, making it safer and more nourishing to drink -and get drunk on- beer instead. Some were even paid by way of beer in part. It became the “meal” for the workers three times a day. No complaints were reported by the employees on the meals they were given, to say the least. It has even been thought that had they not had beer to drink we would not have pyramids.
9. Spit Beer
There is a beer called Chicha or, alternatively, “Peruvian spit beer”. You guessed it. A beer partially made with human spit. This method for making beer actually was used as early as the Incan era. Most of us know that the human mouth is one of the dirtiest parts of our bodies, which, in the case of beer making is actually beneficial. The process is a strange one, but successful in producing needed malt nonetheless. People chew corn up and put it in the beer. The corn is soaked in a person’s spit and the combination of corn and saliva hence creates malt. This method is still practiced in areas such as Peru and produces a very bitter and sour tasting beer- and a popular one at that.
10. Best Beer EVER
Curious to know what the best beer in the world is? According to beer lovers it is Westvleteren 12. It has an alcohol content of 10.2% and has been around since 1940. It is a dark beer variety and is said to taste like chocolate. There are apparently no labels on it and has a yellow cap, which is what sets it apart from all others. It can only be purchased where it is brewed at by monks in Belgium at a monastery. Apparently, a line of cars that stretches for miles will be there to purchase it at pretty much any given moment. On rare occasion they have exported the beer to other countries and sold it for up to $85 per six pack. The sales didn’t take but a few minutes and before the monks new it they had a new roof for their monastery as they intended.
Granted we still think that Charleston Breweries have some of the best beer in the world but we might be a little biased. However you can always come take a Charleston brewery tour and be the judge for yourself.