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Intro to the world of beer

Today’s world beer scene is an embarrassment of riches.It wasn’t always so. In the years since Roger’s 1995 encyclopaedia of beer was released a host of nations have emerged leading brewing excellence far beyond the borders of traditional beer brewing cultures. This upswell of brewing creativity has also seen a large rise in the number of breweries either side of the Atlantic providing a world landscape of inspiration and variety to the brewer and beer drinker alike. This is the focus of Roger’s new book the World Beer Guide 

Roger Protz

Roger is a prolific author of books on beer and pubs. As a speaker and educator giving talks and tastings across the world Roger has travelled widely in the search for good beer.

The art of beer

Why do we buy the beer we drink? What drives us to make each decision? Does the can art and branding factor into our beer buying habits? If so, what do our beer purchases say about us and how we try and portray ourselves to the outside world. Pete Brown looks at how such questions have played a major role in the evolution of beer art, design and branding. The focus of his new book Beer by Design 

Roger Protz

A prolific author of books on beer and pubs, an  educator across the world & a vocal champion for British beer and brewing.

The world of beer turns and churns.

New breweries, new beers pour on to the scene and often in the most unsuspected places. It’s an exciting time to enjoy the world’s favourite form of alcohol.

In my new book the World Beer Guide I attempt to paint a picture of the amazing changes that have taken place in recent years, with thousands of new breweries producing an ever-expanding range of beers.

In 1995 I published a book called the Ultimate Encyclopedia of Beer. It looks like a book from a different age. Back then there were 2,000 craft breweries in the United States and around 800 in Britain. Today there are 8,000 in the U.S. and more than 2,000 here.

In 1995 China got only a brief mention, as did France and Italy. Today China is a major beer producer and one state-owned group, Snow, rivals AB InBev is size. Japan is also making waves in the industry. Italy has close to 900 small craft breweries and brewing in France is no longer confined to the far north, close to the Belgian border, but covers the whole country.

 

 

The world of beer turns and churns.

New breweries, new beers pour on to the scene and often in the most unsuspected places. It’s an exciting time to enjoy the world’s favourite form of alcohol.

In my new book the World Beer Guide I attempt to paint a picture of the amazing changes that have taken place in recent years, with thousands of new breweries producing an ever-expanding range of beers.

In 1995 I published a book called the Ultimate Encyclopedia of Beer. It looks like a book from a different age. Back then there were 2,000 craft breweries in the United States and around 800 in Britain. Today there are 8,000 in the U.S. and more than 2,000 here.

In 1995 China got only a brief mention, as did France and Italy. Today China is a major beer producer and one state-owned group, Snow, rivals AB InBev is size. Italy has close to 900 small craft breweries and brewing in France is no longer confined to the far north, close to the Belgian border, but covers the whole country.

“In 1995 …there were 2,000 craft breweries in the United States and around 800 in Britain. Today there are 8,000 in the U.S. and more than 2,000 here.”

 

— Roger Protz

“Somehow, against all the odds, some 30 of these family-owned breweries have survived..”

 

— Roger Protz

In the 1990s Australia and New Zealand were dominated by such lager brands as Foster’s and Steinlager.

Today few people ask for a Foster’s and both countries have a large number of craft breweries producing both ale and lager.

The World Guide reaches out to drinkers old and new. Even the most experienced and widely-read beer drinkers will, I hope, be regaled by the vast number of beers and styles available but newcomers to the scene will discover there’s a lot more to beer than just a pint of bitter or lager.

I outline the history of beer-making, dating from the Old World of Egypt and Babylonia, and explain, in non-technical language, how beer is brewed and the important roles played by grain, hops, yeast and water.

The main body of the book is a country-by-country breakdown of key breweries and the beers they produce – and it quickly becomes clear that the driving force for the world beer revolution is just one style – IPA.

In the 1990s Australia and New Zealand were dominated by such lager brands as Foster’s and Steinlager.

Today few people ask for a Foster’s and both countries have a large number of craft breweries producing both ale and lager.

The World Guide reaches out to drinkers old and new. Even the most experienced and widely-read beer drinkers will, I hope, be regaled by the vast number of beers and styles available but newcomers to the scene will discover there’s a lot more to beer than just a pint of bitter or lager. 

I outline the history of beer-making, dating from the Old World of Egypt and Babylonia, and explain, in non-technical language, how beer is brewed and the important roles played by grain, hops, yeast and water.

The main body of the book is a country-by-country breakdown of key breweries and the beers they produce – and it quickly becomes clear that the driving force for the world beer revolution is just one style – IPA.

“Somehow, against all the odds, some 30 of these family-owned breweries have survived..”

 

— Roger Protz

India Pale Ale was first brewed in the 19th century in England for export to India

…where the Raj – the top echelon of the army and civil service – demanded a more refreshing beer than the dark milds and stouts sent to the sub-continent. IPA was the world’s first pale beer, long before golden lager was first fashioned. It was exported far beyond India, to Australia, New Zealand and the U.S. but it went into almost terminal decline during World War One as a result of punitive taxes levied by the government.

In recent years it has seen a remarkable revival and my guide details the vast number produced in the U.S., with intense rivalry between such interpretations as West Coast and New England IPAs.

Britain, too, has a large range of IPAs, some similar in fashion to intensely hoppy American versions, others recalling the more balanced styles of the 19th century. IPA is brewed in such unlikely countries as Belgium, France, Italy and Hong Kong. I even discovered one German brewer making IPA while Mikkeller in Copenhagen seems to produce a new version several times a week.

India Pale Ale was first brewed in the 19th century in England for export to India…

…where the Raj – the top echelon of the army and civil service – demanded a more refreshing beer than the dark milds and stouts sent to the sub-continent. IPA was the world’s first pale beer, long before golden lager was first fashioned. It was exported far beyond India, to Australia, New Zealand and the U.S. but it went into almost terminal decline during World War One as a result of punitive taxes levied by the government. 

In recent years it has seen a remarkable revival and my guide details the vast number produced in the U.S., with intense rivalry between such interpretations as West Coast and New England IPAs.

Britain, too, has a large range of IPAs, some similar in fashion to intensely hoppy American versions, others recalling the more balanced styles of the 19th century. IPA is brewed in such unlikely countries as Belgium, France, Italy and Hong Kong. I even discovered one German brewer making IPA while Mikkeller in Copenhagen seems to produce a new version several times a week.

… newcomers to the scene will discover there’s a lot more to beer than just a pint of bitter or lager.”

 

— Roger Protz

But there’s far more to the guide than just IPA.

Brewers in a number of countries have picked up the Belgian style known as Lambic, fermented with wild yeasts in the atmosphere, to fashion beers called sour or wild with an acetic edge to the taste. Another Belgian beer, Saison, has also been taken up in the U.S. and Britain. First brewed by farmers as a seasonal beer to refresh their labourers during harvest time, it’s now produced all year round and offers a maltier beer to fashionable hoppy IPAs.

Porter and Stout, an even older style than IPA, is enjoying a remarkable revival and one version, Guinness Foreign Extra Stout, claims to be the biggest selling beer in Africa. Another almost forgotten beer, Berliner Weisse, a special type of wheat beer, is also enjoying a revival and I have unearthed a similar beer, Gose, that was lost behind the Berlin Wall for several decades.

    But there’s far more to the guide than just IPA.

    Brewers in a number of countries have picked up the Belgian style known as Lambic, fermented with wild yeasts in the atmosphere, to fashion beers called sour or wild with an acetic edge to the taste. Another Belgian beer, Saison, has also been taken up in the U.S. and Britain. First brewed by farmers as a seasonal beer to refresh their labourers during harvest time, it’s now produced all year round and offers a maltier beer to fashionable hoppy IPAs.

    Porter and Stout, an even older style than IPA, is enjoying a remarkable revival and one version, Guinness Foreign Extra Stout, claims to be the biggest selling beer in Africa. Another almost forgotten beer, Berliner Weisse, a special type of wheat beer, is also enjoying a revival and I have unearthed a similar beer, Gose, that was lost behind the Berlin Wall for several decades.

    Artisan brewers are restless people, endlessly seeking new styles and tastes.

    The guide reflects this with an array of beers produced with the addition of herbs, spices, rare plants, chillis, cocoa, coffee and chocolate.

    I even discovered a brewer on the Falkland Island who brews cask beer served by handpumps in his pub. Who says real ale doesn’t travel?

    Artisan brewers are restless people, endlessly seeking new styles and tastes.

    The guide reflects this with an array of beers produced with the addition of herbs, spices, rare plants, chillis, cocoa, coffee and chocolate.

    I even discovered a brewer on the Falkland Island who brews cask beer served by handpumps in his pub. Who says real ale doesn’t travel?

    World Beer Guide by Roger Protz

    This is a book about beer – produced in every country on earth and enjoyed by millions of people. It’s written for those who enjoy beer and want to know more.

    Beer is the world’s favourite alcohol and it has changed out of all recognition in the 21st century. The country-by-country sections will give more detail of the changes but the introduction will lead readers into the world beer revolution. From the U.S. to Australasia, charting the beer scene in every country, the key players and the styles available.

    Order now  

    The World Beer Guide

    by Roger Protz

    This is a book about beer – produced in every country on earth and enjoyed by millions of people. It’s written for those who enjoy beer and want to know more. 

    Beer is the world’s favourite alcohol and it has changed out of all recognition in the 21st century. The country-by-country sections will give more detail of the changes but the introduction will lead readers into the world beer revolution. From the U.S. to Australasia, charting the beer scene in every country, the key players and the styles available.

    Order now  

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