back to article UC Davis shpreads beer schience goshphel

Beer is as old as civilization. Civilization as we care to remember it, anyway. It was mankind's first stride into biotechnology. It helped push nomadic tribes into agriculture. It founded nations. It got Charlie Bamforth a job. Bamforth, a PhD, DSc, chair of the Department of Food Science & Technology at the University of …


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  1. Dick

    In the buff?

    "It involves soaking malt barely" I guess that's so the endosperm can fly free?

  2. Tre LaDormin

    Your tax dollars at work!

    In the history of government spending, I can recall no finer use of tax dollars than the study and perfection of beer.Give the good Doctor of Beerology the keys to the treasury! Finally something good comes from the halls of academia!

  3. Graham Marsden

    Just a thought...

    "Good beer production is long and difficult. It involves soaking malt barely, boiling the solution with hops, cooling and fermenting with yeast and the release of Co2 and ethyl alcohol."

    Err, better not mention that last bit too loud, otherwise we'll have people calling for beer to be banned for contributing to global warming...

  4. Oliver Larkin

    Beer isn't best freshly bottled

    Contrary to what Budweiser would have you believe, a good beer can mature and get better for years once bottled. Like wine you have to start with a good beer if you are going to age it. Fuller's actually has a session once a year where they test the current year's premium brew against all previous years (currently >10 I believe) for quality.

  5. Walter Brown


    teaching college students the benefits of beer...

  6. Paul A. Walker

    Perfecting beer?

    There's no need for other countries to waste time and money "perfecting" beer - in the UK we did that centuries ago, they should just learn from us.

  7. Charlie

    Beer IS best freshly bottled

    When bottled, beer is pasteurised and exposed to oxygen which makes it start to degrade in quality.

    I would assume that if the Fullers anecdote is correct, their beer is stored in its pre-bottled state and kept maturing - a state in which it can keep improving for many years, depending on the beer.

  8. Chris Cooper

    I'd be interested to see you tell a Trappist brewer that his beer won't improve in the bottle...

    Or the brewers of Gales Prize Old Ale, or O'Hanlons Thomas Hardy Old Ale. They'll both improve for a good decade, possibly two.

    The trick is that you don't have to pasteurise (kill) beer before bottling it. In fact there's a name for it: "bottle conditioned beer". Then just leave it in a cool and dark cellar to mature for a while. How long is going to depend on a mix of how good a brewer you are (it won't improve forever) and how much self control you have (before you drink it).

  9. Dave Besag

    What is this bottled beer?

    What is the point of getting your beer bottled? It would make it impossible for the bar staff to top up the pint?

  10. Andy Wales

    la di da beer!!

    The good professor might know the best time to drink the mass produced pale yellow(remind you of anything) but he shows a remarkable lack of knowledge about bottled beer and its history!!

    The original budweiser beer was and still is brewed in Czechoslovakia and is sold under the name budvar,,,I would suggest that for those of you in the states you try and get hold of some and then drink the same amount that you would normally do of american budweiser not only will you find that there is a different, more mature taste; you might find its effect somewhat different!

    A lot of British and particularly Belgian beer is bottled without it being pasteurised (which is basically heating it up and then cooling it) which kills of the yeast and results in a "dead" liquid that will not evolve any further. This resulting live beer still has live yeast in it and it continues to mature and gain complexity and will eventually end up with a vey fine sediment in the bottom of the bottle.

    But then if you look at the full title of his professorship I think the game is given away "Bamforth, a PhD, DSc, chair of the Department of Food Science & Technology at the University of California and Anheuser-Busch Endowed Professor of Malting and Brewing Sciences"

    Does make you wonder whether his teaching is totally free from commercial influence?

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    USA A OK

    "A study showed that people who bought wine at a grocery store also bought things like tofu and low fat yogurt and lettuce leaves," said Bamforth. "People who bought beer bought things like burgers, minced beef and cigarettes. Now just imagine how unhealthy they would be if they didn't drink beer."

    Says all you need to know. Thinks Wine = Posh, Beer = Slob. Personaly I find that with traditional English food (Stew, Pie etc) a good Beer (A nice heavy winter Ale) Is far more appropriat than Wine.

    Typical Amarican atitude though. "Our stuff is the best, and what other nations do MUST be an inferior copy. Im not checking, but it must be because im from the USA!"

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