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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Craig -

I saw that article, too. I took the term "beer" as it's used with root or ginger beer.

The article, however, does imply that it a traditional, brewed beer.

Alan -

I think it might well be just at that transition into modern consumerism. Is "pop beer" the pop of the cap or cork? Not likely as beer popped already. Is it short for "popular"? It is "beer" because it is fermented with some hopping. I wonder when root beer that was 0% alcohol came into being. Most come from tonic, Pepsi being a stomach calming tonic - pep, pepsin - but that's the 1890s.

Bailey -

I think, based on reading here and there, that 'beer' in relation to soft drinks implied carbonation, i.e. that it had undergone a brief fermentation to provide fizz, while remaining <1% ABV.

In Cornwall, you see a lot of old ads for nettle beer, and nettle beer breweries, which we keep meaning to look into.

Craig -

I saw a different article—which includes the recipe.

I can't imagine it would be very alcoholic. I think the "yeast" as they refer to it (which isn't really yeast, more like yeast food), is there to carbonate more than anything else. Obviously, the recipe relies on wild yeast propagation. I can't figure out how they got five gallons out of this either—with that list of ingredients. At some point they'd have to add more than a half gallon of water.

Alan -

I used to make a Jamaican ginger beer with less than 2% on that principle. From the book Clonebrews?

Alan -

So, does "soda pop" follow "pop" in time as pop was a light alcoholic and drubbed out by temperance? Soda only gets used when carbonation by fermentation becomes socially unpopular.

Craig -

But the "soda" in soda pop is a reference to sodium bicarbonate, and soda water dates to the late 18th century.