Beer is the world's oldest and most widely consumed alcoholic beverage and the third most popular drink overall after water and tea. It is produced by the brewing and fermentation of starches, mainly derived from cereal grains—most commonly malted barley, although wheat, maize (corn), and rice are widely used. Most beer is flavoured with hops, which add bitterness and act as a natural preservative, though other flavourings such as herbs or fruit may occasionally be included.
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. Today, 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 basics of brewing beer are shared across national and cultural boundaries. Beers are commonly categorized into two main types—the globally popular pale lagers, and the regionally distinct ales, which are further categorised into other varieties such as pale ale, stout and brown ale. The strength of beer is usually around 4% to 6% alcohol by volume (abv.) though may range from less than 1% abv., to over 20% abv. in rare cases.
Beer forms part of the culture of beer-drinking 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 such as bar billiards.
You may think me strange but I must confess that I have never quite understood why so many people go "ga-ga' over beer. I know guys who practically live just to drink this stuff. To me most beer is bitter. I for one would much rather have a soft drink. But it would appear that I am in a distinct minority. After water and tea beer is the third most popular drink in the world. The fact that beer is more popular than coffee completely surprises me. Now I am not a complete … more
So one day, I walked into one of the four billion locations of a particular convenience store franchise (the one with two numbers in its name) to buy a bottle of water when lo and behold, a selection in the beer case catches my eye. Two familiar words stood out on this very patriotic looking can of brew… Game Day. Being a fan of my old college roomies website, I had to purchase a can of Game Day Light and give it a shot. I plunked down my hard earned buck and a half, headed … more