U.S.A. Wins In Beer Affordability Index


UBS Bank gets set for Oktoberfest with a chart of beer affordability around the world. Using median income figures and prices for a pint, the chart calculates how long the Average Jose has to work in various countries to buy some suds. Raise your glass and chant "U.S.A.! U.S.A.!" 

Cost of a beer in hours worked.

The Economist, where this chart appears, never seemed like a magazine for inexpensive beer drinkers. Neverthless, they may be overstating the price-per-hour slightly. 

Recommended: Zeitgeist, 199 Valencia St., San Francisco, CA.

U.S. median income is $50,054 per year. With a 40-hour work week over 52 weeks, that comes to about 40 cents a minute. A 24-pack of Miller High Life in my neighborhood comes to $15.99, which is quite a bit more than I prefer to pay, but nevertheless this comes to about 67 cents a can. 

The UBS chart uses a 500-milliliter beverage, which is a little more than a pint. Even scaling up the size of the beer, that still means you can get the Champagne of Beers at a little less than 90 cents a can. (Do they even sell High Life by the pint? That seems kind of British.) So in reality, John Q. Public only has to work somewhere between a minute and a half and three minutes to quench the deep-down-body thirst we all feel after 90 seconds or so of concentrated labor.

The chart, however, has Americans toiling about six minutes per beer. Those are the kind of economics that could cost Barack Obama the election, unless they start serving Hamm's at those beer summits. 

UBS has the unit "retail" price for the United States at what I presume is $1.80. That seems too cheap for a bar and too pricey for a supermarket. It's good to know our overpaid working slobs are getting great taste for their less filling career prospects, but let's face it: It's been downhill for this country ever since they stopped brewing Henry Weinhard's

Update: National Journal shows how beer drinkers line up by party affiliation:

Busch Light and Bud Select drinkers care as much about voting as they do about taste.

NEXT: Arab-American Support For Obama Falls

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  1. A dirty little secret is that the U.S. is taking over on beer quality. As a result of that and the economic crisis, the Nazis will return to power in Germany. All because of the microbrewery revolution.

    1. Well, that’s good, then. We’ll finally have some of that National Unity that I’m told we need.

        1. EIN VOLK
          EIN REICH
          EIN BIER

          1. Love it.

            Notice how it’s been like Nazi Week around here? Wonder why?


          2. You know who else liked a good German beer?

        2. Our yeast need some lebensraum!

            1. Lowenbrau sucks

              1. Here’s to good friends,
                Tonight is kinda special.
                The beer we’ll pour
                Must say something more, some-how,
                So to-night, to-night,
                Let it be Lowenbrau.

          1. They had a brief news piece tonight on our local channel about a brewery that uses yeast from the owner-brewer’s BEARD. Sweet Mother of God.

    2. Sadly, we still have precious few brewers who can put together a lager of German quality.

      1. Soon, we will surpass our German overlords.

      2. You should spend more time in Wisconsin.

        1. Yeah, except sadly none of the Wisconsin brewers distribute out to Cali. Feel free to send me a package of some of Wisconsin’s finest lagers anytime. I’ll return the favor with a California gift pack.

          1. They dont distribute to KY either. And Im not giving up any of my plunder from my annual trip north.

            New Glarus made 108k bbls in 2011. That is slightly larger than Anchor and Firestone Walker (104k, 100k), to pick two CA breweries.

            New Glarus doesnt distribute outside Wisconsin. Not even to Chicago.

            Anchor is nationwide. I know FW is outside CA, but not sure where all they distribute.

            1. FW is in Chicago as of last year. And it is delicious. Mmmmm, Union Jack.

      3. 1. There are actually alot of good American lagers that are equal to or better than the German competitors

        2. The problem is that lagers are very conservative and the differences between a good and bad quality lager are much smaller than in other styles that American breweries prefer.

        1. I love Victory Prima Pils. Best US pilsener IMO.

  2. A 24-pack of Miller High Life in my neighborhood comes to $15.99, which is quite a bit more than I prefer to pay

    You need a new neighborhood.

    1. Or to cleanse it of hipsters. I was in Cambridge MA over labor day and I shit you not, the one restaurant wanted $12.00 for a six pack of PBR (it was on the menu in six pack quantities).

      The sheer amount of hipsters there was shocking.

      1. What a hipster may look like…..ipster.jpg

      2. Next time you are in Cambridge, MA, visit Meadhall. The owner is an acquaintance and there is a fine list of beer.

        1. I’ll check it out. Thanks.

          1. I second the Meadhall recommendation.

      3. While $12 is insane, I’ve worked in bars that were allowed to do carryout in another east coast city. The liquor license allowed it, so we did it as a courtesy basically. We did $6 a six pack while it was $2 individually, (if talking PBR.) A restaurant/bar isn’t the liquor store. Yo’re only supposed to pay the prices after midnight FFS. BTW, most bars that do carryout scale their prices. $2 more usually gets you at least a not totally shit domestic. $3, Red Stripe, Amstel, et al. Usually you’re paying, essentially, a set premium of over the liquor store price plus the beer. Then again, it’s MA, the state that banned happy hour, maybe they allow carryout and force them to charge full price.

    2. Wrong – they should pay YOU to drink Miller High Life. $1 is quite a bit more than I’d pay for a 24-pack of gutter piss.

      1. A place that has a big neon sign of “Miller High Life” usually has very good steaks. But they always have lousy beer.

        1. The steaks have to be good enough to cleanse the palate of the Miller High Life taste.

      2. I’ve never tasted gutter piss. Does it really taste like Miller High Life?

        1. Nah. Miller High Life has the cleanest taste of all the American Adjunct Lagers. It’s just one dimensional like most of the rest of them.

          1. It’s so cute to see all these youngins going thru their beer snob phase.

            1. You know whats worse? The snobs who ONLY drink Bud Light.

              1. huh ….. I guess I do know a couple of those. I never put them into their own category before. But you are right. They are worse.

            2. Plus, even though I’m not much of a lager drinker, I do get the urge for a decent shandy from time to time. Miller High Life is not a bad choice for mixing because it is clean tasting with no side effect flavors.

        2. Ok, I give that gutter piss is slightly more acidic and more likely to have dead mosquitoes floating around in it. You can probably extract potable water from both with enough processing.

          1. You know, before it was gutter piss, it may have been a fine german lager. Just sayin’.

    3. You need a new neighborhood.

      You’re telling me. I moved here thinking “Hey, Virginia! The South! Everything will be way cheaper here than in L.A.!” And in fact every single thing, except house prices, is more expensive. On my first trip to the “discount” supermarket I almost passed out like Robin Williams in Moscow On the Hudson.

      1. Are you in the DC suburbs? Nothing is cheap there, except honor.

      2. I’ve noticed that about Virginia too. I think its actually the southern most New England state.

      3. The Stimulus worked, Tim! Just not outside the Beltway, literally.

      4. The Safeways in Alexandria are known to carry Peak and Dogfish Head. Just an fyi.

    4. Needs to get a new beer.

  3. Another homebrewing thread?

    1. They could go back to dissecting the 47 percent remark. What the fuck would you prefer?

    2. Now that the weather’s starting to cool down and my house won’t have +80 degree temperatures in the closets, I’m looking forward to starting up again.

      It took my first brew, a weizenbock about 8 months to mellow out, probably due to rookie mistakes. It started out way too sour and lacked most of the style’s characteristics. It’s finally coming into it’s own as a good beer, if not a traditional weizenbock. I think I’ll give weizenbock another shot.

      1. I let a corner in my basement get down to 45 degrees in the cold months. Perfect for lager. I’ve been trying to make European Pilseners the last couple seasons with some pretty good results.
        I try to keep things simple when I brew. That way it’s easier to isolate what needs to change.

      2. I made a hefedunkeldoppleweizenbock once. On a lark. It was like drinking banana bread. It took eight months to mellow out too.

        Then when I was in Munich a few years back I actually found a brewery that had it!

        1. Strong-dark-wheat-lager.

          Sounds interesting.

        2. I love the banana bread aspect, which is what my beer is lacking. I think for one I put way too much malt. The alcohol is up in the 13% range. I think I also pitched the yeast at too high a temperature, as I stupidly forgot to buy a thermometer at the homebrew store with the rest of my equipment.

          1. I’ve got a fermometer stuck to the side of all my carboys.

          2. The alcohol is up in the 13% range.

            ‘Nuff said.

            1. Thats a wheat wine, 8 months seems like a reasonable minimum for flavors to meld.

      3. 80 degree temperatures means you brew saisons. You have to keep that pipeline full.

        1. By the time it gets to 70 degrees in my brewing areas, I’ve got five kegged batches and two more in secondary. Thirty five gallons seems to last until it gets cool again.

        2. My basement is a nice temperature year round for ales.

          I use my garage for lagering in the winter and saisoning in the summer.

      4. You can do the “cover the carboy with a shirt and put it in a tub of water” thing to shave off 5 degrees or so. With a fan it’s more like 10.

  4. Like that could ever be a bad thing.

    1. This was in reply to sarcasmic, above.

  5. ever since they stopped brewing Henry Weinhard’s


    In fact, while it’s been bought and sold a few times, I’m pretty sure it still exists.

    1. You may be right, but I haven’t seen Henry’s in years.

      1. I’ve seen in it Safeways. Von’s is a Safeway brand, so maybe you can find one there.

      2. You need to visit the NW Tim!

        Not that it ever went away but Henry’s is once again being produced in Oregon. Full Sail Ales in Hood River makes it under contract. Prior to that, Miller was manufacturing it out of the Olympia (“It’s the water…and a lot more”) Brewery in Washington. There’s at least a couple of bottles of Blue Boar Ale in the my fridge at the moment.

        Hmm… I think I might crack one open right now. Almost beer thirty.

    2. They just started stocking that brand in the Meijer stores in Michigan. First I’ve seen it. Any good?

      1. I like it, specifically Blue Board, Hefe, and Private Reserve but then I was raised on the stuff so you’ll have to find someone else for a more objective opinion.

        1. Boar not board.

      2. IMO, It’s not on the level of good microbrews, but it’s decent and a great value for the price.

  6. “Do they even sell High Life by the pint?”

    Yes. They are called “pounders”.

    1. Yeah, that’s the comment that lets us know who’s a yuppie and who’s been in or near the working class. Hit a convenience store near a plant or industrial neighborhood sometime. They’ll have a big open topped cooler of pounders and by 6 most nights it needs restocked.

    2. I think I saw some 2pint PBR’s recently. I kind of want one, just so I can say I shotgunned it.

      1. There’s a lot of stuff in 24 oz cans now, but I don’t know if I’ve seen the full 2 pints.

        1. Quarts? You can find them everywhere 40s have been banned.

  7. The Huffington Post article Tim links to for the median income number makes me want to puke:

    “This is good news and a surprise,” said Sheldon Danziger, a University of Michigan economist who closely tracks poverty. He pointed to a continuing boost from new unemployment benefits passed in 2009 that gave workers up to 99 weeks of payments after layoffs and didn’t run out for many people until late 2011. Also, job gains in the private sector that helped offset cuts in state and local government workers.

    “It would indicate the stimulus was even more effective than believed,” he said.

    I don’t even know where to begin with that crap.

    1. Everything is evidence that the stimulus was even more effective than believed.

  8. Pumpkin lager just tapped out. Still got some pumpkin ale and a porter on tap, with another ale hibernating in secondary.

    Pretty soon it will be cool enough in the basement to start lager season!

    1. Damn. We don’t have a lagering season in Houston. We don’t have basements either, for that matter.

      1. No basement at the Alamo? Where the hell is Pee Wee’s bicycle?

        1. “Hey kid, you alright? What do you remember?”

          “I remember…the Alamo?”


        2. Whoa, there’s no basement there? Screw it, I’m not visiting next month.

      2. I know people who use combinations of chest freezers, refrigerators, and thermostats to create environments for year round lager brewing.

        1. buddy’s got an insulated and a/c closet for fermenting, but real lagers take a bit more control than he has so we usually stick with brewing ales.

          1. An old fridge and a $50 thermostat works wonders.

            1. yeah, but he brews 70 gallons at a time and his fermenters can’t fit in a normal fridge…you’re point is well taken however whenever I start my own homebrewing.

              1. 70 fucking gallons. That’s impressive. I brewed 18 in total this summer, and not really much room for more.

                1. he bought a brewing system from a brew-pub that was moving. Nice stainless system.

                  1. *Drool*.

                    You guys are making me want to take up brewing again.

                    I’d have to have a refrigeration rig, though. Its just too damn hot too much of the time, here.

                    [Off to Google]

                    1. OK, I’m back.

                      One word:


                      Holy crap, but things have advanced since my brewing days.

                    2. Blicgmann’s overrated and overpriced. I prefer the stuff you can get from

                      I built my own skid mounted brewery using morebeer tanks, a couple of pumps, and all stainless tubing and fitting and it cost considerably less than a prefabbed system. If course, I had to weld the stainless frame myself.

                    3. [Off to]

                    4. I’m back again.

                      Decisions, decisions.

                    5. You can also get some good pots at some online restaurant supply companies if you don’t mind cutting and installing your own fittings.

                      My next step is to fully automate my mash temperature control system. I built a HERMS system and my first few allgrain beers have turned out quite well even with manual control but I think I can get better.

                    6. Metalworking of any kind by R C is a very bad idea.

                      To show you how long I’ve been away from brewing, I’m surprised to see people using plastic carboys. I wouldn’t have thought you could keep them sterile. Back in my day [shakes cane], it was glass carboys, period. I had a slick quasi-conical setup where the carboys were upside down for fermentation.

              2. So, at 3 batches per year he moves over the line to illegal. NTTIAWWT

                1. He was just holding those for a friend.

                2. So, at 3 batches per year he moves over the line to illegal. NTTIAWWT

                  Nope, its a co-op with a bunch of owners. We all stay perfectly legal.

                  though we’re so lazy, sometimes we don’t even make it past 3 batches a year.

            2. I built a ferm chamber with a cheap chest freezer and a temp controller from Love instruments.

        2. Yeah, I have a second fridge in my garage, but I don’t use it for fermenting anymore. It’s got two five gallon kegs permanently parked in it now. Need to get on my pumpkin and Christmas ales before I miss the target date to have them ready for the holidays.

      3. but we’ve got the best refrigeration techs this side of the mississippi. lagers don’t care if they’re inside or outside.

  9. i love microbrews, but empirically I feel worse after a night of drinking a bunch of them compared with bud light. I’ll grant you that drinking microbrews in excess is not really in the spirit of “enjoying” the quality, but it is something to note.

    1. The majority of microbrews are ales, as opposed to bud light which is a lager.
      Ales ferment at a higher temperature than lager, producing more of the non-ethyl alcohols like methyl and fusel oils which contribute to feeling like crap the next day.

        1. This is why triple distilled vodka like Skyy don’t leave you feeling so shitty the next day, because they leave all the bad stuff behind.

          1. True story: Skyy was actually created to be the hangover free Vodka and tested on the SF gay club scene.

          2. Yep. Decent white liquors really cut down on hangovers, which means you can drink more.

            1. But compared to a good whisk(e)y, they’re bland and boring.

            2. Except rum, which gets its flavor from leaving in some of the tail which contains the fusel oils.

            3. This explains why I had no hangover after I got falling down throwing up drunk on Chinese white liquor last year. That stuff makes me retch anytime I smell it now ut man was it smooth and not a hint of a hangover the next day. Of course it might have helped that I threw most of it up before it had a chance to soak in too far.

      1. Science! So I should stick with lagers on Saturday while I’m tailgating. I’ll keep that in mind when I buy the beer tonight.

        Not that I can get truly wacky. The downside of doing things with organizations is the lowest common denominator taste bud.

        1. My heavy drinking preference is Weihenstephaner Original. Such a fantastic and balanced helles lager.

    2. The secret of not feeling like crap the next morning, don’t allow yourself to fall asleep. If you are really buzzed, but want to drink more. Run water in the bathroom sink, add ice, dunk your head in it several times. It will sober you up for the next round.

      1. It will keep you awake for the next round, not sober you up. But you are right about falling asleep. It’s better to just stay up all night and pile food and as much water as you can drink on top of the booze if you don’t want a hangover.

    3. I don’t get hangovers drinking pints of colored water either.

      The best use for Bud Light: rinsing off your homebrewing equipment. And it even comes in convenient cans to keep it sterile!

      1. Don’t they call that “contamination of equipment”?

      2. for=the=motherfucking=win

  10. Guinness or Murphy’s for me. I tried brewing a few times but I don’t really have the space for it and it’s a lot more work than I thought it would be with all the sanitizing, etc.

    A six pack of Guinness in Nashville runs $8 at the discount place. I’d rather drink six of those than 12 miller high life’s.

    1. True that. Even though Guinness is not in my top 20, I would prefer it over any of the American lagers. Except maybe the Sam Adam’s Noble Pils which if you allow to sit for a few months, is a very good beer. The usual Sam Adam’s skunk is smoothed out, and the czechy hops dominate the taste.

      1. For some reason I actually like Mich Ultra. Can’t stomach most other American lagers, but I like the Ultra.

      2. I’m not buying and storing Sam Adams bilgewater for a few months. I need soapy tasting beer, I’ll add Dawn to whatever’s around the house.

        1. Sam’s problem is that it is a macro/micro hybrid or ‘a thing that should never be.’ They have the right ingredients and processes but at the same time their demand push kills the quality by getting the product on the shelf before it’s properly ready.

        2. Sierra Nevada is the same damn way. I like to take three of their Torpedoes put them in a three liter bottle, and then ice distill them to concentrate the alcohol. Creates a monster of a beverage.

          1. I love the Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale. Last year’s wasn’t as good as prior versions; I hope the 2012 batches are closer to the ideal.

            1. I wonder if you had the barrel aged version. I had a friend ranting about missing that not too long ago.

              1. I’ve only ever had it from a bottle. When it’s good it is very very good. And when it’s bad it’s still a good IPA.

            2. By ‘ranting’ I meant more like he was ‘weeping’ due to its discontinuation.

            3. Celebration is a nice holiday brew. I love Torpedo.

              1. Okay, you guys talked me into it. Picking some up on my way home for some evening drinking.

                1. Good for you. I picked up a case of the “Beer Camp” variety pack; trying some tonight.

          2. Heady Topper = what Torpedo wants to be when it grows up

      3. Harpoon had a winter warmer years ago that I could drink by the caseload, it was “cinnamon and nutmeg” flavor but it was a hint of the flavors, it didn’t mask the lager itself nor dominate the overall flavor. Some buffalo wings and winter warmer was about the perfect football meal/beverage afternoon for me.

        I tried it again last year and it wasn’t the same. I think they messed with the recipe or something.

        I’ll pay extra for this lager though, well worth it-…..rodid=4374

        1. That is a good brew. My local beer wall (850+) carries it and I last bought Duvel last spring.


          If I were more of a lager consumer it would definitely be a bigger part of my diet.

      4. I gotta try this! 6 months maybe?

    2. Shit Tman, get the Guinness Foreign Extra Stout. It blows regular Guinness away. You have to get it in a high grav place like Midtown or Frugal MacDoogal’s though.

  11. Okay. This is perfect. When we camp everyone brings a homebrew to share. I don’t homebrew, but travel quite a bit for work. I’m going to be in Houston this week. What’s the best local brew I can pick up while I’m there. I’m not a huge IPA fan. Don’t like the taste of windex.

    1. I’m partial to Southern Star. I hate their Pine Belt Pale, but I like the Bombshell Blonde and the Buried Hatchet Stout.

      No Label does good stuff, and I know the owners, but the availability is spotty in bottle right now since they just started selling it that way.

      Karbach is okay, but oiff teh top of my head I can’t remember what they do.

      And ther’es always St. Arnold’s. I’m big on their Santos right now.

      I recommend trying some or all and taking home what you like.

    2. Yeah, I’m with you. IPAs are generally terrible. Maybe I haven’t tried the right ones. I know know much about the Houston breweries, but if you ever see Live Oak Primus, it’s an Austin-brewed fall-winter only beer and it’s probably my overall favorite beer.

      1. One of the local breweries here in NC makes a pretty decent black IPA.

        Black Raven IPA – Olde Hickory Brewery

        I have a few on hand for tomorrow evening. It is one of the few that actually taste better the warmer it gets so they much be doing something right.

        1. The thing that murders IPAs for me is the sour grapefruit flavor. Is it strong in that one?

          1. Ugh, I can’t stand grapefruit, but there are plenty of great IPAs that don’t have that flavor too much. Try Stone IPA and Dogfish Head 90 Minute IIPA. Also Long Hammer IPA.

            1. Long Hammer IPA

              It’s a good beer (though not nearly in Stone or Dogfish’s class) but man, that shit gives everyone I’ve ever known the worst hangover imaginable. You’d better clear your calendar for the next 24 hours if you drink more than two.

              1. Huh. Never had a problem with it myself, although I don’t know that I’ve ever had more than a couple in a sitting either.

            2. The DH 90 Minute is a mofo. I prefer the 60 – I can drink more of them at one sitting.

          2. The thing that murders IPAs for me is the sour grapefruit flavor.

            That would be the Cascade hops. A nice thing about making your own is that you can choose a variety of hops that is not citrusy. Kent Goldings are my favorite for ale.

          3. Nope. The initial taste you get is definitely the piney hops. When it warms up the stout becomes more prevalent.

            1. I don’t care for the pine flavor either. I like my hops either non-grapefruit citrusy, or dank and juicy.

              1. I love the pine. It’s what makes drinking IPAs more like an adventure than a round of beers with the pals. If you hate the pine you wont like Oxymoronically Named Raven.

    3. Then stop drinking Windex.

    4. IPAs can be good if they’re not overdone.
      There seems to be some American competition among microbrewers to make beer so acidic it strips paint.

      1. I like the super hoppy IPAs. It’s not always what I want, but I do like hops.

        1. I like an IPA once in a while if it’s done right, but every micro house seems to be in a race to make them undrinkable.

    5. Thanks, I’ll keep an eye out. Going to need to take something other than my carry on for a trip to bring back a dozen or so. Anyone know of a packing system to keep the bottles safe while they get tossed around in luggage?

        1. Can I actually ship via FedEx or would I just be able to find something in which to pack the beer?

          1. I’ve shipped carefully packaged homebrew via USPS before. It’s probably illegal to ship alcohol over state lines, but that only matters if they find out.

      1. Bubble wrap, tape and gallon sized zip- loc bags, wrap them up nice and roll them up in jeans and shirts, etc in your luggage. I’ve carried probably 3 dozen bottles this way with no breakages.I’ve done 9 bottles in what turned out to be a 48 pound suitcase. Gotta watch for the weight limits the airlines impose.

        1. I did something like that once years ago when coming home from a Seattle trip. Wrapped up a bunch of stuff from a place I can’t even remember (except for the three-masted sailing ship on hte label) and brought it home in my luggage. Thank Creator for wheels on luggage – or whoever thought it up and I hope patented.

    6. Jester King, though they’re in Austin, make some good stuff.

    7. Real Ale Brewery is sort of local – Blanco. The Fireman’s 4 Blonde is pretty good.

  12. Another homebrewing thread?

    Finished my first homebrew (standard pale ale) two weeks ago. Finished about a third of my product so far. Planning on making an imperial stout next and let it sit with some oak chips in secondary. Hopefully that should be ready by about Thanksgiving time to give me a solid stout to hold me over during the cooler winter months (as cool as SoCal gets that is). Hopefully, at that point the weather will be cold enough where I can do a doppelbock in the garage to have ready for the early spring lenten season.

    1. Extract or all-grain? If you’re brewing extract I would suggest putting off anything Imperial until you upgrade your equipment.

      1. Extract, I live in a small apartment in SoCal and saving up for a house is taking some time. Why would you discourage the RIS with an extract setup?

        1. With all-grain you control the mash temperature and thus the proportion of fermentable sugars to unfermentable sugars. When someone else mashes for you you do not. This means that with anything Imperial you’re going to have a much higher final gravity than if you did the mash yourself. Even fermented out it can be syrupy and cloying, which I find to be decidedly unpleasant. That’s my two cents.

          1. I found a good recipe for a partial mash that I think I can make, thus kinda balancing the two.

            Partial Mash RIS Recipe

            Target FG is 1.021, which seems achievable with the setup and seems like it wouldn’t end up too cloyingly sweet (which I’d prefer to avoid as well). You think this will work for a rookie without an AG set up?

            1. I made similar when I was in transition. They came out well enough.

              With your limited space, may I suggest the ‘Brew In A Bag’ (biab) method?


  13. Fermenting out a five gallon bucket of winter mead right now, with a shipment from Austin Homebrew due in tomorrow with all the necessities for a chocolate doublebock brewed as an ale and a rauchbier cream stout. Turns out that Jimmy Carter did one thing right.

    1. What yeast do you use for the doppelbock brewed as ale? How does it generally turn out? Doppelbock is one of my favorite styles, but living in SoCal I don’t have great temperature control.

      1. I’m not an expert in subsituting out yeasts, but if I were doing a liquid yeast suspension, I’d play it safe and go with the California Ale yeast. That strain won’t introduce too many unwelcome esters, and though the final product won’t be a doppelbock, it should be close enough. Wyeast’s Irish Ale yeast is another one that I’ve seen used in Oktoberfest ales, so it should also work.

        1. I tend to create frankenstein beers, so I’m using s-04 dry yeast for both of mine. I’m always entertained, but I don’t recommend that if you’re trying to create something true to style.

    2. Interstate trucking and airline deregulation anyone?

  14. Eh who cares alcohol is disguisting enough (the only thing I’ve ever tried that was not immediately spew worthy was a $200 a bottle Single Malt Scotch) and Beer is the worst of the worst by far. I’d be much more interested in knowing which country leads in the minutes of work required to buy a movie ticket or something useful.

    1. You are a sad, strange little man, and you have my pity

    2. I used to think that way. I hated beer all through college and well into my first few years post-college. Turns out I had just never had a good style or brand.

      1. When I first started drinking it was Jack and Cokes and other cocktails, and I couldn’t even stomach beer. Then when I turned 21 and was pretty much force-fed beer for a few weeks I could no longer handle cocktails. Now I can drink just about anything but beer is preferred, followed by whiskey, then mixed drinks.

        1. Want some really good whisky? Try Fourty Creek. Some of the smoothest whisky I’ve ever had. Everyone I know who has had it swears by it. I love the stuff.

          Their Confederation Oak is really good too, but very pricey.

        2. Oh, and if you’re looking for it, look in the Canadian Whisky section.

          1. Wrote it down. I’ll have to look for it at some of the liquor stores around here. My friend brought down some Collier and McKeel from Tennessee which has been pretty banging.

            On a whiskey related food note, my dad and I used some Maker’s Mark in a marinade for london broils when we held our annual Labor Day Meat Fest bbq (300+ pounds of meat smoked, grilled, and cooked). The marinade didn’t penetrate all the way through to the inside because we didn’t sit it overnight, but in the future we’ll probably use it to make jerky.

        3. When I first started drinking it was Jack and Cokes and other cocktails, and I couldn’t even stomach beer. Then when I turned 21 and was pretty much force-fed beer for a few weeks I could no longer handle cocktails. Now I can drink just about anything but beer is preferred, followed by whiskey, then mixed drinks.

          Replace JacknCokes with amaretto sours and tequila sunrises and you could insert that into my biography.

      2. This.

        I moved from Atlanta to Switzerland immediately after college. Good beer hadnt made it to Georgia by 1991.

        Suddenly, I discovered there was good beer!

        Then I moved to Wisconsin and discovered it existed in the US.

        By the time I moved back to KY, we had craft beer too.

      3. Yeah see my problem is that I can’t stand the taste of alcohol, any of it. Plus with something like 16 of my 20 aunts/uncles/parents (blood relatives only, not the ones by marriage) including my father having been alcoholics/drug addicts or both it never seemed like a good idea to try and cultivate a taste for it.

        Still when I have tasted it by far beer has been the worst tasting.

          1. Or you could just stick to drugs to alter your mind, if you need to at all.

            1. Who needs drugs when I have Science Fiction and Role Playing games?

              1. Not to mention I just had knee surgery 2 weeks ago and they gave me Oxycontin (15 mg) for the pain, first time in my life I ever had a drug that made me feel “high” and I stopped taking that shit as soon as I could cause I hated the way it made me feel.

                I’ll stick with the Vicodin which doesn’t seem to have any other side effects but pain killing on me cause I don’t want my mind altered by drugs. If I really want my mind altered I’ll go reread my copy of Gaiman’s Sandman.

        1. No, I was exactly the same as you. I occasionally enjoyed an amaretto sour or Bailey’s Irish Creme, and after a little bit got into Nigori (milky/sweet) Sake, but other than that I pretty much hated all alcohol until just a couple years ago when I forced myself to try various different styles of beer and find out if there are any I liked.

          I’m still pretty picky on my beers although I have acquired a broader taste with experience. Avoid lagers, pale ales and pilseners if you hate the traditional “beer” taste. Weizenbocks and dark hefeweizens like Franziskaner are the smoothest to drink in my opinion (the banana bread flavor covers up much of the alcohol) and were what finally converted me from beer hater to beer lover after about 10 failed attempts. Ambers, brown ales, porters and stouts also have a nice diversity with lots of flavors besides alcohol, and vary in how easy they are to drink.

  15. As I mentioned in another thread:

    Craft brewing growoth rates, by volume:

    2006 +13%
    2007 +12%
    2008 +6%
    2009 +7%
    2010 +12%
    2011 +13%

    1. Peak Craft Brew!

  16. Tim, I like that you did alt-text, but it’s misleading. The x axis is actually minutes, not hours.

  17. It might be met with derision, but as I do not have the apartment size nor the taste pallet developed yet for brewing large quantities of beers I am unfamiliar with, I use the Mr. Beer brewing kit. It makes about 2-2.5 gallon batches which equal 18-22 twelve-ounce bottles depending on how thick you want the last few to be.

    I love it though, and I do have plans in the future for upgrading to a full 5 gallon system. I just don’t want to make a batch that I can’t stomach or that was a complete waste (like a cider I mistakenly tried to do for my girlfriend) in 5 gallon quantities because of the wasted money. But I am already starting to see the downside of Mr. Beer when the refill packs and ingredients come and go with the seasons.

    1. Not sure what Mr. Beer consists of, but you can buy dry malt extract and hops pellets from lots of places year round which makes it pretty easy to make batches of whatever size you want.

    2. As an all-grain brewer with the luxury of being able to purchase ingredients in bulk, I can brew a five gallon batch with just twenty dollars worth of ingredients.

      Something to think about.

    3. Money lost? It’s less than $40 for most 5 gallon batches.

      1. Every penny counts right now unfortunately. But not enough to make me not want to brew or drink beer.

        Like I said, the majority of the reasoning is not the money since in the long run a 5 gallon batch would be more cost-efficient, but because of the smaller apartment size and still trying to figure out what types of beers I like and would be interested in making big batches of.

        By the time I’m off to law school next year I’ll upgrade my system.

        1. My suggestion is get a brewing buddy. Then you can get half of each batch, but at the in bulk price. Plus it makes brewing more fun.

          1. When I first looked into it that was the plan, but my roommate had shown little to no interest which forced my hand into getting the smaller system.

        2. My suggestion is to not go to law school.

          1. haha too late. Believe me when I say you aren’t the first to tell me that, especially working in a law firm as I already do now. It has revealed to me that I don’t want to do real estate law, though.

  18. I like the new chart, though I’m surprised that Sad Adams drinkers skew Republican. I would have thought it would be the other way around, thanks to being a MA product.

    1. Or the French Canadian Labatt Blue.

      I especially like the giant Bud Light gas bubble planted squarely in the apathetic “moderate” category.

      1. Cool Story Bro:
        Labatt Blue is named after the Winnipeg Blue Bombers

        1. yeah, and they gip you out of half an ounce on every bottle

    2. Its primarily and OH and PA product.

      The brewery in MA is tiny.

      1. I’m aware that the beer itself is mostly brewed there, but is it really distrusted that heavily there? It’s on tap literally everywhere around here.

        1. Its on tap everywhere national wide.

          With two exceptions–places that dont carry anything but BMC and craft specialty bars that dont see the need to carry Sam.

          1. Basically, if you go into any chain-type bar/restuarant, say Buffalo Wild Wings or Old Chicago, that tries to be slightly better on beer than your BMC joint, you will find Sam Adams and Guinness on tap.

            1. I always assumed that Sam wasn’t as prevalent outside of the northeast.

            2. Sam and Guiness is on tap in every restaurant and dive in my area and the more advanced beer-slinging chains like BWW have increased their craft selection in response. Thanks to the marvel of increased competition I can now get a 22 oz Stone for $6.50 at a bar, which is barely more than the local liquor stores are charging.*

              *Only slightly exaggerated.

              1. 22 oz Stone for $6.50 at a bar

                Bought a few the other day for 4.99 at the local Harris Teeter. Arrogant Bastard is a buck more.

    3. I would like to see a number for non-Sam craft drinkers.

      probably closer to middle of the road, with high voter turnout. Like Fosters only higher up.

  19. Mine isn’t even on that National Journal chart. That’s how independent I am.

    1. Are you trying to say it’s something we’ve never heard of? I bet it’s PBR.

      1. It’s something you can’t spell.

        1. Thatt coudl be nething.

  20. The Labatt Blue doesn’t surprise me as much. Most of the people near the Quebec border are rural, which tends to mean more Republicans.

    1. Tell that to Vermont, The state is as Rural as it gets, hell they don’t even have a real city in the state and yet it’s politics are just slightly to the right of Cambridge Ma.

      1. I’m a French Canadian from rural Vermont. The only part that has similar politics to Cambridge is Burlington area… which just happens to have a huge chunk of the state’s population so it dominates voting. If you are actually in the country (where most of the French Canadians actually are), you’ll find that the prevailing sentiment is quite republican.

        The liberal people in Burlington don’t drink Labatt because they’re too busy drinking Long Trail, Magic Hat, or PBR.

  21. I like Coors, or Shiner when I’m feeling fancy.

  22. We High Life connoisseurs out-vote the shit out of those Natty Light savages.

    Also, LOL Corona.

  23. Does anyone do decoction?

    1. What you do in your bedroom is your own bidniz.

  24. Good god that is a load of crappy beer.

  25. Perhaps they’re using the price of good beer instead of Miller High Life swill in their calculation?

  26. As far as politics and beer go, I’m distressed to see more and more microbreweries touting their “sustainability,” “environmental responsibility” and “fair trade” ethos. I want a good craft beer, not a sermon in a bottle.

    1. OMG, New Belgium is the absolute fucking worst at that bullshit.

      1. If it’s fair trade that makes the Lips of Faith series Cocoa-Mole taste so awesome, count me in.

        1. They have discounts in the local stores all the time on the more commonly available NB items. Ranger is a real face grabber (like the yungin alien) of a beer. Well worth grabbing several six packs when on sale and letting sit in the garage for several months.

    2. Ever so much this. I don’t give a shit what you do besides sell me a qulaity product. If your product is good enough, I’ll pay more for it so you can indulge in your eco-hippie bullshit. Conversely, all the eco-hippie bullshit in the world won’t help me buy it if it sucks.

      It’s why I buy CFls. I can get more light and use less electricity. I don’t care that I’m saving the planet. I care that I can actually see in my closet instead of trying to squint under a tiny lightbulb because the builder cheaped out on light fixtures.

    3. I want a good craft beer, not a sermon in a bottle.

      You are the exception. Many want their ego stroked *while* they drink.

  27. Me: “The U.S. has the most affordable beer in the world! Yay!”

    The GF: “We’ll need it.”

  28. The chart, however, has Americans toiling about six minutes per beer

    I can attest this is how it works for me in reality. Every 6 minutes, I stop working and drink a beer.

  29. Shouldn’t it be per capita income, rather than household income?

  30. hanks has returned. its currently brewed at full sail (hood river, oregon), who know how to brew great beer.

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