The Lyutitsa fortress, where Bulgarian soldiers used to drink rakia before a fight.
An interesting archaeological find in Bulgaria this week gave new life to the discussion when the art of distilling became a thing in Europe. This part of an 11th century distillation vessel is the third piece of hard evidence from Bulgaria that it’s national drink rakia was around a few hundred years before the Western Europeans started distilling, which is believed to be in the 16th century. Most interesting statement in the discussion came from Bozhidar Dimitrov, historian and head of the National History Museum in Sofia, who stated in a press release that ‘Bulgarians are invincible as long as they drink rakia’.
The various popfestivals in the Summer are known for the alcohol related fun and drunken madness. Pinkpop, a festival in the South of Holland is quite a notorious one. Just ask the Irish singer Shane MacGowan, if he remembers that is. This weekend the Dutch singer David Achter de Molen of the band John Coffey pulled quite the stunt at the same festival. As he crowdwalking during his concert, somebody threw a beer at him. With an amazing speed he caught the glass in mid-air and drank it in one sip. Respect!
Ferdinand Magellan (1480-1521) was the first European explorer to ever reach Asia by sailing only westwards. The Portuguese captain also initiated (he didn’t survive the full journey himself) the first full circle around the globe, with that proving without a doubt that the world was completely round. On this amazing expedition the crew on his five ships suffered a lot from starvation and a lack of clean water. However, Magellan made sure that alcohol was never a problem since he spent more money on wine and sherry than his flagship and all the weapons on board.
It’s a scientific fact: a beer with your joint gets you higher.
Quite interesting news from the United States. Scientific research performed by the American Association for Clinical Chemistry (AACC) has shown that people who drink alcohol in combination with cannabis get significally higher levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in their blood. THC is the main psychoactive constituent in marijuana. In simple words: you can get a lot more stoned with the same amount of weed if you drink some beers with that.
Beer brewing has traditionally always been a woman’s job at the Zulus ever since the Goddess Mbaba Mwana Waresa introduced this craft to humans.
Most people can probably tell you who Dionysus or Bacchus is, since ancient Greek and Roman mythology are quite well spread in the Western World. But have you ever heard of an African colleague of these Wine Gods called Mbaba Mwana Waresa? Well, the Zulus believe that this Goddess created beer and taught people how to brew it themselves. That’s right fellows, according to the legend this worldwide symbol for masculinity was a female invention.
The nets that catch the fog in Pena Blanca and provide the local brewery with very pure water.
Since water is a key ingredient of beer, some places may seem unlikely locations for a brewery to settle. The Atacama Desert in Chile for example is the driest desert in the world that is not on within a polar area. There are some places in this desert that have gone without rain for decades. Still the Atrapaneblina (literal translation: fog catcher) Brewery in a town called Peña Blanca accepted this challenge. It‘s beer is made entirely with water caught with ‘fog nets’.
A horrible sight when brands like Budweiser and Heineken are occupying the space of decent beers.
In many countries around the world craft beers are on the rise; micro breweries, as well as hobby brewers experimenting on an even smaller scale for their own consumption. Not just because it’s fun, not because these people have way too much time on their hands, but mostly because it’s getting harder and harder to find decent ‘normal’ beers. Most of the biggest brands in this world taste like a smooth cocktail of horse piss mixed with goat urine. And to make matters worse these big players on the market have a habbit of buying smaller companies, change their old recipes and make their beers horrible too. Time to expose some of these horror brands that give beer a bad name.