Beer sometimes gets a bad rap. The truth can be buried behind billion dollar marketing campaigns or shielded by flat out ignorance. If you’ve ever been involved in the “which beer is better” argument, with the only choices being bud, miller, coors, you know exactly what I mean. Here are a few of the beer myths we’ve heard along the way;
1) Dark Beer is Heavy. The color of beer comes purely from the grains used in its creation. Dark beer contains more roasted or toasted malt, which provides for a darker color, but has no effect on the caloric level of the beer.
2) Ale is Stronger than Lager. My follow up to this myth is always, “well, what’s the difference?” The difference being that ales use top fermenting yeast at warmer temperatures and lagers use bottom fermenting yeast at colder temperatures. The alcohol content comes from the amount of sugar and the attenuation of the yeast, or amount of fermentation. At Deep Ellum Brewing Co, we’ve got a few beers that we ferment using lager yeast at warmer temperatures, but that’s a whole different story.
3) Beer Makes You Fat. Inactivity and bad diet make you fat. Beer, as with everything enjoyed in moderation, doesn’t.
4) Stout is a “Meal in a Glass.” Most stouts are no more caloric than than those light yellow lagers you struggle to get through as part of a “more balanced diet.” Truth is, most beers come in at just under 200 calories, which unless you are drinking them by the keg, you don’t need to sacrifice on flavor. Next time, forgo the MGD 64 and drink what makes you happy. Your taste buds will thank you.
5) Cold Filtering. Really? All beer is cold filtered. It’s part of the brewing process. Could you imagine a brewery running a beer through a hot filter? What would be the point?
6) Wine is more complex than beer. Absolutely preposterous. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy a nice glass of vino here and there, but how could something made from one ingredient, grapes, be more complex than something made from a minimum of water, malt, and hops and an almost limitless diversity of other ingredients. To be completely fair, the barrel adds quite a bit of character to wine, but breweries barrel age just as well. Toasted coriander, candied ginger, and carob molasses – yeah, try making a wine with that.
7) Fruit beers are for girls. Prior to the addition of hops, beer got its flavoring from a wide variety of spices, herbs, and yes, fruits. It’s just another ingredient in the brewer’s arsenal to make unique tasting beer. (Isn’t that what it’s all about?) Truth is, adding fruit, be it a lime, lemon, or orange, is much more girly and disrespectful to the brewer than drinking an intended addition of citrus. (see #8).
8) Adding a fruit wedge to a beer. This is a sin. If the brewer had intended a fruit presence in the beer, it would have been brewed that way. In fact, the citrus juices can actually destroy the intended flavor profile of most beers. For all the mexican import drinkers out there, adding fruit to a beer can also apparently lead to spotty skin. Pay the brewer some respect and ask for you next beer NFL – or, no freakin lime!
9) Beer should be ice cold. Just as an unclean glass prohibits a good head and affects flavor, so will an ice-cold glass. Ice-cold beer hides all the flavor nuances a brewer goes to great lengths to create. Most beer should be served anywhere between 40 to 50 degrees F. A general rule to follow is the darker the beer, the warmer the temperature.
And, for all you out there who love the latest and greatest thing, I’d like to leave you with a video. It’s from the guys at Schlafly, the same great brewery who gave us Drew. It discusses their new Swirlie bottles with G.U.L.P. technology.
Hope you enjoy.