beer

Beer

Posted on January 16, 2015

Since its origins around 4300 B.C., beer has seen many variations but the basic premises stay the same. It’s something you can always count on … a nice, cold beer at the end of a long day.

c. 4300 BC
Recipes are found on Babylonian clay tablets with at least twenty types of beer. Beer is also used as a daily wage for workers.

3000 BC
Thanks to the Gilgamesh Epic, we know that beer is just as important as bread during these times. “…The whore opened her mouth and spoke to Enkidu: ‘Eat the bread now, O Enkidu, as it belongs to life. Drink also beer, as it is the custom of the land.'”

c. 1728-1686 BC
King Hammurabi decrees a daily beer ration for all ranks. The high priests get five liters per day while the workers gets two liters.

c. 1728-1686 BC
King Hammurabi decrees only barley be exchanged for beer. When a female saloonkeeper accepts silver for beer, King Hammurabi has her drowned.

c. 1600 BC
Beer is part of one hundred medical remedies, according to Egyptians texts.

c. 1600 BC
When an Egyptian man offers a woman a sip of his beer, it means they are married.

c. 1600 BC
Flavoring for beer during this time includes balsam, hay, dandelion, mint, wormwood seeds, horehound juice, crab claws, and oyster shells.

c. 55 BC
During war campaigns, the Roman legions introduce beer to the rest of Europe.

c. 49 BC
After crossing the Rubicon, Caesar toasts his soldiers with beer, commencing the Roman Civil War.

c. 23 BC
The Chinese brew what they call “kiu.”

500 AD
For the next five hundred years, Europe begins practicing brewing in monasteries and convents.

500 AD
Beer is used for trading, payment and taxing.

800 AD
Germans use barley and wheat in their beer.

1000 AD
A new ingredient, hops, is added to the brewing process.

1200 AD
In Germany, Austria, and England, beer becomes a commercial enterprise. The Germans like their beer cold so it is stored in Alpine caves. The English like it warm and store it in cellars.

1420
Brauerei Beck becomes Germany’s first brewing guild.

1491
Christopher Columbus comes across natives making beer from corn and black birch sap.

1493
The Duke of Bayers-Landshu decrees that: “… beer brewers and others not use anything other than malt, hops and water. These same brewers also shall not add anything when serving or otherwise handling beer, upon penalty to body and chattels.”

1516
In Germany, the Beer Purity law is established. It says that barley, hops and pure water are the only ingredients to be allowed in the beer brewing process.

1553
Beck’s Brewery is founded.

Late 1500s
For breakfast, England’s Queen Elizabeth I drinks strong ale.

1587
Sir Walter Raleigh of Virginia is the first to brew beer in the New World. However, his fellow colonists snub his beer and request ale from England.

1591
This is the last recording of the burning of a “brew witch.” Brew witches are women who are blamed for any brewery that goes wrong. Many innocent women died this way.

1602
Dr. Alexander Nowell discovers that ale will last longer in corked glass bottles.

1612
The first commercial U.S. brewery opens in New Amsterdam (what is now New York City.)

1620
Because beer supplies are running low, the Pilgrims land at Plymouth Rock.

1674
Harvard College opens its own brewhouse.

1757
George Washington’s personal notes reveal his personal recipe “To Make Small Beer.”

1786
John Molson founds the Molson brewing company in what later becomes Canada.

1842
In Pilsen, Bohemia, the first golden ale is made.

1860
Ferdinand Carre receives a U.S. patent for the first commercial refrigeration machine.

1860
Eberhard Anheuser, a St. Louis businessman, loans money to a local brewery and later buys the interests of minority creditors.

1864
Heineken is founded when Gerard Adriaan Heineken purchases a brewery in Amsterdam.

1876
The American Budweiser brewing company is founded by Adolphus Busch, son-in-law of Eberhard Anheuser, in St. Louis, Missouri.

1876
Louis Pasteur develops the pasteurizaton process to stabilize beer.

1880
In the USA, there are a little over 2,300 breweries.

1909
During an African safari, Teddy Roosevelt buys 500 gallons of beer.

Jan. 16, 1919
Ratification of the 18th amendment to the US Constitution begins the illegalization of the manufacture, sale and transportation of alcohol.

Jan. 16, 1920
National Prohibition officially takes effect.

1921
August A. Busch, head of Anheuser-Busch, makes a statement to the public regarding Prohibition: “Those who are obeying the law are being ground to pieces by its very operation, while those who are violating the law are reaping unheard-of rewards. Every rule of justice has been reversed.”

1928
The anti-Prohibition AAPA (Association Against the Prohibition Amendment) reports that enough hops have been sold during the year to make 20 million barrels of prohibited beer. They contest that the loss in taxes on these sales is a reason to end Prohibition.

1933
The 21st Amendment repeals the 18th Amendment, making alcohol legal again.

1938
Elise Miller John runs Miller Brewing. She is the first woman to ever operate a major brewery.

1964
Metal kegs are introduced in Germany.

July 6, 2005
Heineken buys the Stepan Razin brewery in St. Petersburg, Russia, raising Heineken’s Russian market share by 10%.

Oct. 6, 2005
The first gluten-free beer is introduced by Finnish brewery Laitilan. The beer is called Kukko Pils and is the first beer to receive the international gluten-free product trademark.

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