Portal:Beer

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B e e r

A portal dedicated to beer

The Beer Portal

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Beer is one of the oldest and most widely consumed alcoholic drinks in the world, and the third most popular drink overall after water and tea. Beer is brewed from cereal grains—most commonly from malted barley, though wheat, maize (corn), and rice are also used. During the brewing process, fermentation of the starch sugars in the wort produces ethanol and carbonation in the resulting beer. Most modern beer is brewed with hops, which add bitterness and other flavours and act as a natural preservative and stabilizing agent. Other flavouring agents such as gruit, herbs, or fruits may be included or used instead of hops. In commercial brewing, the natural carbonation effect is often removed during processing and replaced with forced carbonation.

Some of humanity's earliest known writings refer to the production and distribution of beer: the Code of Hammurabi included laws regulating beer and beer parlours, and "The Hymn to Ninkasi", a prayer to the Mesopotamian goddess of beer, served as both a prayer and as a method of remembering the recipe for beer in a culture with few literate people.

Beer is distributed in bottles and cans and is also commonly available on draught, particularly in pubs and bars. The brewing industry is a global business, consisting of several dominant multinational companies and many thousands of smaller producers ranging from brewpubs to regional breweries. The strength of modern beer is usually around 4% to 6% alcohol by volume (ABV), although it may vary between 0.5% and 20%, with some breweries creating examples of 40% ABV and above.

Beer forms part of the culture of many nations and is associated with social traditions such as beer festivals, as well as a rich pub culture involving activities like pub crawling and pub games.

The Beer WikiProject

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WikiProject Beer is an association of Wikipedians with an interest in beer and beer-related subjects. They have come together to coordinate the development of beer and brewery articles here on Wikipedia. Additionally, other groups have formed other projects that entertain subjects that are directly related to beer, bartending and pubs. Additionally, the mixed drinks project covers topics that include beer cocktails. If any of these subjects pique your interest, please feel free to visit their projects. These groups would love to have you participate!

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Steam beer may be defined as a highly effervescent beer made by brewing lager yeasts at ale fermentation temperatures. It has two distinct but related meanings:
  • Historic steam beer, by all accounts bad-tasting, produced in California from the mid-1800s to the mid-1900s;
  • Modern California Common beer, the official name for the beer family which includes Anchor Steam® beer.

Historic steam beer, associated with San Francisco and the U. S. West Coast, was brewed with lager yeast without the use of refrigeration. It was an improvised process, originating out of necessity, perhaps as early as the Gold Rush. It was considered a cheap and low-quality beer, as shown by references to it in literature of the 1890s and 1900s.

Modern steam beer, properly known in the brewing community as California Common beer, was originated by Anchor Brewing Company, which trademarked the name Anchor Steam® Beer in 1981. Although the modern company has corporate continuity with a small brewery which was still making traditional steam beer in the 1950s, Anchor Steam beer is a craft-brewed lager. The company does not claim any close similarity between it and turn-of-the-century steam beer.

Explanations of the word "steam" are all speculative. The carbon dioxide pressure produced by the process was very high, and one possibility is that it was necessary to let off "steam" before attempting to dispense the beer. According to the Anchor Brewing Company, the name "steam" came from the fact that the brewery had no way to effectively chill the boiling wort using traditional means. So they pumped the hot wort up to large, shallow, open-top bins on the roof of the brewery so that it would be rapidly chilled by the cool air blowing in off the Pacific Ocean. Thus while brewing, the brewery had a distinct cloud of steam around the roof let off by the wort as it cooled, hence the name.



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The Kirin Brewery plaza in Japan
Kirin Brewery Company is a Japanese company. While best known as a brewery and maker of whiskey, Kirin also makes soft drinks, and has diversified businesses in foods, pharmaceuticals, logistics, engineering, real-estate and restaurants.

Longtime leader of the Japanese beer market, Kirin Brewery Company, Limited was overtaken in the early 2000s by its arch-rival, Asahi Breweries. Kirin nevertheless continues to sell two of the most popular beers in Japan, Kirin Lager (the country's oldest beer brand) and Ichiban Shibori. In the burgeoning happoshu (low-malt) category, Kirin Tanrei is the top seller. In addition, Kirin handles domestic distribution for several foreign brands, including Budweiser and Heineken. Kirin's brewery operations also extend overseas, through strategic alliances, subsidiaries, and affiliates, to China, Taiwan, Australia, the Philippines, Europe, and the United States. The company holds a 46 percent stake in Lion Nathan Limited, a consolidated subsidiary that is based in Australia but has particularly important operations in China. Kirin has also invested a 15 percent stake in San Miguel Corporation, the dominant brewer in the Philippines. With more than 100 years of experience in the brewing business, Kirin now applies its fermentation technology to areas such as plant genetics, pharmaceuticals, and bioengineering. Although brewing and related businesses remain the core of Kirin's activities, the company is also involved in several other sectors: hard liquor, wine, soft drinks, and food products.

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Harbin
Produced by Harbin Brewery

Harbin Beer (Chinese: 哈尔滨啤酒 [traditional 哈爾濱啤酒], pinyin: Hā'ěrbīn Píjiǔ) is a product of the Harbin Brewery. One of Harbin's beers is a wheat beer that has a resemblance to the Belgian beer Hoegaarden.


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Well ya see, Norm, it's like this... A herd of buffalo can only move as fast as the slowest buffalo, and when the herd is hunted, it is the slowest and weakest ones at the back that are killed first. This natural selection is good for the herd as a whole, because the general speed and health of the whole group keeps improving by the regular killing of the weakest members. In much the same way, the human brain can only operate as fast as the slowest brain cells. Excessive intake of alcohol, as we know, kills brain cells, but naturally it attacks the slowest and weakest brain cells first. In this way, regular consumption of beer eliminates the weaker brain cells, making the brain a faster and more efficient machine. That's why you always feel smarter after a few beers.


The Buffalo Theory as explained on an episode of Cheers by Cliff Clavin to his drinking buddy, Norm Peterson


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Beers in the German shop REWE.
Credit: Ralf Roletschek (Marcela)

Beers in the German shop REWE.

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Alexander Keith, Founder of Alexander Keith's Nova Scotia Brewery
Alexander Keith
B. (1795-10-05)October 5, 1795 – d. December 14, 1873(1873-12-14) (aged 73)

Alexander Keith was a Canadian politician, Freemason and brewmaster. He was mayor of the city of Halifax, Nova Scotia, a Conservative member of the provincial legislature, and the founder of Alexander Keith's Nova Scotia Brewery.

Keith was born in Halkirk, Caithness, Highland, Scotland, where he became a brewmaster. He immigrated to Canada in 1817, founded the Alexander Keith's brewing company in 1820. He served as mayor of Halifax, Nova Scotia three times, and as a member of the Legislative Council for 30 years.

Throughout his career Keith was connected with several charitable and fraternal societies. He served as president of the North British Society from 1831 and as chief of the Highland Society from 1868 until his death. In 1838 he was connected with the Halifax Mechanics Library and in the early 1840s with the Nova Scotia Auxiliary Colonial Society. Keith was also well known to the Halifax public as a leader of the Freemasons. He became provincial grand master for the Maritimes under the English authority in 1840 and under the Scottish lodge in 1845. Following a reorganization of the various divisions in 1869, he became grand master of Nova Scotia. There are 4 masonic lodges named in his honor, one in New Brunswick in Moncton, and 3 in Nova Scotia being in Halifax, Stellarton, and Bear River.



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