On the three incidences when I have occassioned to sell/serve authentic German citizens beer (twice as carry-out and once in a bar), they have opted for the most vile concoctions of the brewer’s art. The young German lady in the bar wanted Bud Light with orange juice in it, for God’s sake. The guys buying off-sale were buying Miller High Life Light and Busch Light. I thought Germans “knew” about good beer. Any thoughts? (I realise this may be destined for MPSIMS)
You got it wrong. Germans like quantities of beer. It is the English that make the best tasting beers. Give me a Guinness anyday!
TheIncredibleHolg: I mean this in jest
Guinness is Irish.
Damn, You’re right, and I’m an idiot.
The English like to drink beer though.
Yes. I think we’ve just seen an excellent example of what happens when surveys are taken insufficient sample sizes.
Livin’ on Tums, Vitamin E and Rogaine
I don’t like Bud, but then I don’t like the taste of hops. Bud certainly doesn’t taste any WORSE to me than any other hoppy beer.
I once heard a radio interview with a microbrewer. The host doing the interview apparently was a beer snob and was trying to show how “cultured” he was by running down Budweiser. The microbrewer stopped him cold and said something like “Anheuser-Busch brews a hundred million barrels a year, and the Bud you buy in January tastes exactly like the one you buy in August. Microbrewers would KILL for that kind of quality control.”
I’ve never understood the concept that there must be something wrong with anything that is popular or inexpensive or, heaven forbid, both. My brother had an acquaintance in high school whose sole notion of quality was how much something cost. (I remember one conversation centering on the notion that a product purchased at store X was better than the exact same product by the same manufacturer purchased at store Y, simply because store X charged more for it… though to be fair I don’t recall if that was him or my brother parodying him.)
Though I’ve never been to Germany, my ancestry is nearly 100% German. I like beer, and nearly all my relatives like beer. I would have to agree that we look for quantity over quality (we as a family, that is - I can’t speak for Germans as a whole, of course). Besides, after about three, you can’t tell the difference. I prefer Mickey’s, MGD or Killian’s Red (if it’s payday).
I recently spent a month in Northern Ireland. I went to a lot of pubs. You would not believe how many people said that I was so lucky to come from the States where we have Bud, Miller and Coors readily available. They would order bottles of it, when they could be drinking fresh Guinness or Caffreys or Harp on tap. The people that I talked to said that they like the lightness of it and the easy drinkability. From what I remember, Miller is a very good seller in the British Isles. I personally find it repulsive, but hey, if they like it, who are we to complain.
I am German by heritage, have been to Germany many times, and regularly associate with many German people. I’ve never heard a single one of them say a kind word about American beer—and I don’t blame them. There is nothing in America that comes anywhere close to good German beer from the tap (well, possibly a few microbrewers, but none I’m familiar with). Bottled German beer here is OK, but nothing like the fresh variety.
“I think it would be a great idea” Mohandas Ghandi’s answer when asked what he thought of Western civilization
I think it was a gentleman in the employ of the Guiness brewery who invented the t-scale, a statistical model specifically designed to take into account small sample sizes.
As far as which beer is better, you can be assured that most anything being shipped over here to America is dumbed down to accomodate our canoe-sex tastes. Someday I’m going to blow a couple of months in Bavaria and find out for myself.
Canoe-sex? Isn’t that illegal in some states?
American beer is piss-water, generally, though I must admit that Rolling Rock is a brew I enjoy simply because it is very light. I mean, warm Guiness from the tap is great, but it’s like a meal, and similar heavy brews are not really condusive to outdoor activities like BBQ’s and what have you.
Personally, I generally try microbrews often when I travel, and am rarely disappointed. Seattle is a mecca for good micros.
[[I don’t like Bud, but then I don’t like the taste of hops. ]] Torqu
Not to defend Bud with especial vigor, but perhaps you should be steering clear of most beer if you don’t like the taste of hops.
[[Bud certainly doesn’t taste any WORSE to me than any other hoppy beer.]]
Er … Bid’s not particularly hopped.
[[I once heard a radio interview with a microbrewer. The host doing the interview apparently was a beer snob and was trying to show how “cultured” he was by running down Budweiser. The microbrewer stopped him cold and said something like “Anheuser-Busch brews a hundred million barrels a year, and the Bud you buy in January tastes exactly like the one you buy in August. Microbrewers would KILL for that kind of quality control.”]]
The microbrewer was correct there – that is Bud’s greatest strength.
[[I’ve never understood the concept that there must be something wrong with anything that is popular or inexpensive or, heaven forbid, both. My brother had an acquaintance in high school whose sole notion of quality was how much something cost. ]]
Obviously, your brother’s friend was being ridiculous, but it is true that you often get what you pay for.
In the interest of fairness, beer is not created equal and its not a true quality scale. Preferences vary. To say ones bad is foolish, some are bad, some are different, and some are good, but not in line with your tatses. I love beer, and have tried a larger variety than most who claim to be discriminating.
I know in Ireland (Dublin) they were quite fond of Bud, Miller was not as liked, but still not piss-water.
Germany has its fair share of piss water, and they drink as much canoe-sex beer as we do, but they also have some of the best in the world. And if one could put history aside, the US microbrews would certainly compete (and do in some beer affcianodos magazines).
I think Bud is much better than Miller, and thats because of its purity, and freshness. Miller often tastes stale and doesn’t drink as smooth as Bud. Some beers are watered down, but the non-light beers aren’t. they are just made using a light hopping, and light malt. Roasted malt has a more bitter flavor. Whos to say whats better?
No one seems to recall that most of the strongest flavored beers are US ales, and micros. Most countries don’t have mircobrews and the ones that do don’t export it, or even sell it outside of their town. Heineken, Becks, Fosters are all macrobrewed crap from foreign countries, and the locals won’t touch it. The only country with stiff competition among brewers is the US, others are still making beer the way they did in the 1500s because they don’t need to inovate. This doesn’t make them bad, but just cause a recipe is new doesn’t make it better or worse.
And as for the idea that Bud is a heavily hopped beer…well you certainly haven’t had anything thats actually hopped like a Czech style pislner. Bud is a smooth beer because it doesn’t use lots of hops or a dark malt.
I guess beer is influenced by advertising and reputation, more than actual taste. But thats why there are so many great beer commercials with hot women, god I love those commercials.
Mr Thin Skin, I have a hunch that I’ve appeared a little touchy about German-related issues in the past. Let me assure you that as long as you don’t portrait German breweries as led by old Nazis employing slave laborers, you’re okay by me.
As for beer: I’m not an expert by any means, but I know that there is a wide range of different types of beer in Germany. From my experience, (world-famous) Bavarian beer is actually rather thin, but you can drink large quantities of it because the alcohol content is relatively low. (I imagine this is most similar to American beer.) Bavarians also make most of the wheat beer (which is great). In Northern Germany, they tend to make stronger beer with a harsh taste that many people prefer. With that stuff, Bavarians suddenly look very bad in drinking contests. And don’t try bock beer in “Maß” quantities.
Returning to the OP, there are some regions in Germany where they habitually mix beer with certain juices (not what you’re thinking now!) to procude stuff like “Berliner Weiße mit Schuß”. Personally, I never understood about those, but the bottom line is that even in Germany, there’s a wide range of preferences, beer-wise. Yes, I suppose your sample was too small.
Now, to help me follow the discussion, could anyone tell me what “canoe-sex” is supposed to mean? And is a “microbrewer” anything more specific than just a small brewer? Thanks.
Having drunk beer in many, many places, some of which I can even remember, I find it very hard to generalise about the taste of "beer’ as there are so many different kinds.
Most of the beer drunk in Germany is “lager” (oops, generalisation), though they have things like Bock and Heffeweizen too, as well as specially brewed seasonal beers. Lager is similar in style to Bud, Miller, Heineken, Fosters et all, though personally I have to agree that the Budweiser I had in Vermont recently had almost no flavour at all, I wouldn’t go back to that. Heineken is brewed in the Netherlands and, in spite of what Sparky has experienced, it is the far and away the beer of choice, along with Grolsch and Amstel, in part due to the fact that many of the places you go to are kept inns and you don’t really have a choice, other than going to another bar. On the whole I find German lager slightly stronger than others, though not neccessarily better; that part of the reputation comes from the fact that German beer is brewed under what is known as the Reinheitsgebot which was a law enacted by Kaiser Ludwig (the mad one) saying that beer was only allowed to contain 4 ingredients (I think they were barley, hops, yeast and water but I may be wrong here).
In the UK there is a much larger variety of beers to be had away from lager like Fosters or Castlemain 4X, tipples such as ale, bitter, stout and the like. These are almost all much more flavourful and stronger than any lager, though it is a quesion of taste. Ale and “Real Ale” is the closest that I have come across to an equivalent of what can be found in the States from microbreweries in terms of flavour, though die hard Real Ale fans will of course say that their tipple is infinitely better. Real Ale is different in one important respect: it is a live culture so it is only available in a cask and apparantly you have to be a savvy publican to serve the stuff properly as it needs to have the right temperature in storage and will not keep very long. Some of the drinking experiences that I don’t remember too well are associated with ales going under names like Spitfire, Sheep Dip and Old Bastard. 'Nuff said.
Guiness was originally brewed for the porters at London’s Covent Garden market who liked something you could cut with a knife and serve on a plate apparantly, and that why it is known as Porter. Guiness have 55 breweries across the globe so the Guiness you drink in the US is most likely brewed there too. I know, I was a little dissapointed when I heard that too. Little know fact: the Guiness distributed in Ireland is actually slightly weaker than that found elsewhere! I asked your man at the brewery why that might be so but he didn’t rightly know, I can only surmise that it is because they drink much more of it over there than people elsewhere. My experience was that, whilst lager is becoming more and more popular in the large towns and cities in Ireland, probably because it is easier to drink, Guiness and Murphy’s still dominate the more rural areas. Here the lesson endeth. I hope I don’t look like an alcoholic now or anything.
It only hurts when I laugh.
Is someone having trouble picturing people having sexual intercourse in a (floating)canoe?
I think it’s an allegory for something foolhardy, not worth the trouble, the pursuit of fun with disaster imminent, noisy, wet, and extremely public. All of which could conceivably apply to beer-drinking.
Actually Nick, it is a reference to an old joke.
"Why is American beer like having sex in a canoe?
Its fucking near water.
Actually, Guiness is a stout, not a porter, the differnce is signifcant.
Thanks, Omni, it makes sense now. Nickrz, my imagination is just as vivid as yours (although less twisted at times), but intercourse in a canoe didn’t seem to fit the context.
Yes, William Gosset was his name. He published under the pseudonym “Student,” hence why we call it Student’s t. AFAIK, Guinness made Gosset publish under a pseudomyn.