A Good Beer Blog


Have you read The Unbearable Nonsense of Craft Beer - A Rant in Nine Acts by Alan and Max yet? It's out on Kindle as well as Lulu.

Maureen Ogle said this about the book: "... immensely readable, sometimes slightly surreal rumination on beer in general and craft beer in particular. Funny, witty, but most important: Smart. The beer geeks will likely get all cranky about it, but Alan and Max are the masters of cranky..."

Ron Pattinson said: "I'm in a rather odd situation. Because I appear in the book. A fictional version of me. It's a weird feeling."


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Seamus Campbell -

You're mixing two kinds of averages here, which is a bit dangerous: mean (total amount divided by number of data points) and median (the "middle point"). Just because the 70% of Scots drinkers consume X bottles of liquor annually does not mean that 35% consume more and 35% consume less.

Now, I have no idea what the actual distribution is behind that average; whether it's a small number of truly serious alcoholics driving up the average, or a large number of more moderately-heavy drinkers, and it's fair to express concern either way. I don't think there's any doubt that there are some drinkers in a bad way in Scotland.

Alan -

"Dangerous" like drinking way too much beer and hurting yourself or dangerous like a wrong statistical analysis? But I take you point. I am not even sure if the non-drinkers are in or not in as the words adults and drinkers appear to be used interchangeably by the BBC.

But statistics also have to speak to reality. So it is possible (as you say but taken to the absurd to illustrate your point) that there could be one man in Glasgow who drank 3.9 billion worth and everyone else is having one small glass of dry sherry on New Year's Day. I'd say, however, that it is unlikely that the average skews towards too small a pool of heavy heavy drinkers. There is a limit to human capacity and there is no discussion that the problem is not pervasive. If there was too small a problem group they would stand out. I'd say those things make for not that much difference between the mean and the median. Is that fair?

Adam -

Another way of putting that last U.S. number is two 12 oz. bottles of a slightly more than 5% ABV Pale Ale, IPA, etc... per day.

I have no idea whether that is unhealthy or not but I can think of at least one person who calls beer "health food" and would have no problem with it: http://brookstonbeerbulletin.com/texas-beer-columnist-throws-beer-under-the-bus/

Alan -

Well, celery is health food, too, but there only so much that one can take as part of a healthy diet.

Andrew the Beer Chemist -

There was a study released in the early 1980s that was conducted by a medical researcher that suggested that the average male could consume 6 beer a day and 4 for the average female. For the most part, many people cannot comprehend consuming these quantities and govenrment policy makers and the medical profession have erred on the side of caution by recommending much lower quantities with no scientific evidence to back the recommended consumption. Also, see my post on the Beer: not fattening? page of this blog. Please enjoy!

Alan -

6 x 7 = 42 x 150 calories = 6300 calories or just under enough calories to create just under 2 pounds of fat if not off set by reductions in diet otherwise or increase in exercise. Considering the health advice from an anonymous "chemist" in the brewing trade would not be my recommendation.

Andrew the beer chemist -

The calories calculated for a weekly consumption is indeed 6300. However, it is not true that those calories will create "2 pounds of fat". Can you provide a literature reference that supports a total conversion of 6300 beer calories to fat? Please see my post on the other blog topic about calories in beer. As far as an "anonynous chemist in the brewing trade" comment goes would Alan who wrote this be willing to state their credentials. I have a BSc in Chemistry from the University of New Brunswick located in Fredericton, NB, Canada. Also, I am no longer employed by a brewer, I run a small Water and Wastewater Testing and Consulting company in Rothesay, NB, Canada called Potable Solutions Inc. Cheers!

Alan -

No. You have been a hand puppet. You have made no sense and contradicted both common understanding and medical science. You provided no identity let alone basis for your position.

Your comments are welcome if they advance understanding. They are not "posts" and they so far are not very compelling.