We’re getting what we asked for + World Beer News
a weekly collection of stories and reports from around the world of beer!
Today, we've got adorable grandma photos and novelty beer, actual science, and a at the monkey's paw of our beer geek wishes. But first,
A taste from the fridge
I'm such a yeast fan girl.
Which is why it's interested to watch the giant movements of the pasturized.
Carlsberg and Asahi Group both refused to comment rumors, but Bloomburg is quoting sources saying that Danish brewery Carlsberg is considering the acquisition of Tsingtao Brewery
Last year we saw a lot of movement from the big players with the Anheuser-Busch InBev / SABMiller merger. Asahi Group bought a bunch of eastern European beer brands from Anheuser-Busch InBev for $7.8 billion to boost its presence in the region.
AB InBev agreed to sell brands including Pilsner Urquell from the Czech Republic, Poland's Tyskie and Lech, Hungary's Dreher and Romania's Ursus to ease clearance from competition regulators for its $100 billion takeover of SABMiller, finalised in October.
Now it appears as if Asahi Group is review its investments and intends to sell stake in Tsingtao as Asahi Group president Akiyoshi said the company this year will take a decision on how to dispose of stake in Tsingtao, because
"there is no control over the shareholding is not much sense."
Heineken buys Kirin's Brazilian presence
It's great how when numbers get so large, we just start to fudge them. Heineken's website says that it will be buying up Kirin's 12 stagnant breweries for about $706 million, while Reuters reported yesterday that he sale was for $1 billion. Meh! What's 300 million between multinational conglomerates? Secondly only to ABInbev on the global market as well as in Brazil, this will mark a major move for Heineken into the world's third largest beer market.
— What does your grandma drink? This munchies article showcasing grandmas from Belgium and their beer cellaring selections, is awesome. It’s what I assume I’ll be doing in the future. My one though with this is that I’d love to bring them some other beers to try — ones that reflect a progressed society. “mrs. santa”
A Rich Choking Hazard
Mantra Artisan Ales, a specialty craft brewery, unveiled a beer Friday night that uses diamonds in the filtering process.
It’s being brewed for the Main Street Brew Fest and is called the Miel de Diamant, which is French for Honey Diamond.
The beer is produced with local products, including butternut squash, sweet potatoes and local spices, which are dry hopped over more than 45 carats of diamonds from a local jeweler.
“We put the diamonds into the beer so we have technically the most expensive beer we ever made,” Derrick Morse with Mantra Artisan Ales told News 2
The diamonds do not affect the flavor of the beer nor does the beer affect the quality of the diamonds, but no where does it say rather or not drinkers can be expecting to find diamonds in their teeth.
My dream beer related destination : North Korea
This Wired article outlines things we've long heard from the isolated empire. The beer is good and it's made by women. For me, visiting north Korea would be like walking into the past, the Twilight Zone of beer! A strange, pure point in history when brewing was still a household endeavor, where resourceful home makers used their cooking skills to create a localized brew. Given limited ingredients and regulated contact with the outside influences North Korean beer resembles something like West Coast USA steam beer.
I was only allowed to speak with one brewer, the young woman who runs the brewing operation at the Yanggakdo International Hotel.
Beer with Grapes
This year, during San Francisco Beer Week, you can find a dozen breweries that are either literally brewing beer with wine grapes or letting their beer ferment in wine barrels, which causes beer to pick up wine-like notes. There’s even a special Beer with Grapes event at Social Kitchen and Brewery on Valentine’s Day.
Wait, wait, what's trendy?
A little late on the barrel aging hype train, soon Duvel on oak barrels will hit the shelves. The barrels come from two american bourbon distilleries : four roses and buffalo trace. Depending on how the beer evolves, bottles should be available April or May.
Your future bottle caps will regulate themselves
Kcaps, the newest innovation in bottling technology, have yet to even start their fun raising campaign on Kickstarter but they are already causing a stir among brewers and beer geeks.
Beta tested and now endorsed by an impressive line up of industry leaders these sophisticated caps are have a valve inside the body which regulates the carbonation inside your beer.
This means that you can bottle your beer without worrying about rather or not you've primed it properly or if the yeast are tucked in tight and feeling co-operative. Creaters say that your beer will have the carbonation you’ve intended and not more. Pubs, bars and restaurants will be able to store bottles (and kegs!) at room temperature: on shelfs, showcases, tables, without worrying about what will happen opening that bottles.
The big question on everyone's mind is price. These fancy new-fangle caps are going to be off the market for home brewers like us! But, in speaking with the developer he give the impression that the price of these caps will not be much more than the standard crowns already in use.
Getting what we asked for may not be what we wanted
Beer is moving into a new light on the global stage. Even Ukip leader Paul Nuttall believes that ‘Beer-swilling is an image of the past'. More and more beer is being used a form of protest
But what we are asking for may not be exactly what we intended.
DOWN WITH FIZZY YELLOW LAGER!
Like a cool, unseeming morning fog creeping over the land, ABInBev is rolling out Goose Island to far corners of the planet. Goose Island pubs are being opened around the world, granting locals access to hip aesthetics and previously unheard of beer styles. We've seen how the ABI/SABMiller merger has effected the movements of all the big beer companies and now, we are starting to see it effect the public. Or rather, we (you and I) are seeing it.
Last year may have be known as the year that politics in the United States of America took the world by it's eye balls but it should be known as the year that Belgian owned ABInBev took the world by it's beers.
For purists like SwillinGrog, it’s boring and depressing to see Goose Island Ipa be the spearhead of Carlton United Brewers post-merger portfolio. After quelling the CUB protest, ABI has begin to slowly rework the infrastructure of the Australian craft beer scene. Pushing aside regional brands already locked under it's wing and contracting the newly acquired breweries to make time to brew it's new mass brew : Goose Island IPA.
Let me remind you, my beloved beer friends that this is what we asked for. It’s no longer fizzy yellow lager but highly hopped golden ale. Just as the novelty of cold, crisp bubbly lagers pushed out unpredictable ales, we are getting the chewed up interpretation of 'good' mama birded back into our mouths.
Goose Island is good in the sense that is is well made, on style and consistent, because that is what macro-breweries know how to do. Heineken is EXACTLY what Heineken brewers what that beer to be, every single time. What makes Goose Island differetnt is that it's a different style - instead of making everyone east corn fakes, not we've got fruit loops! Very exciting.
So why are beer geeks upset? Small scale brewing is unpredicatable, that's what makes it artisitnal. When Goose Island gets unpredicatable, there is a riot.
Comment below why you think this double edged sword, this double standard is applied to macro vs micro, or some discuss this and other topics with me on Sunday for a live stream session.
To finish off this week's episode here is this video of a guy drinking a beer through his nose. Have a great weekend!