The largest wine encyclopedia in the world

23.062 Keywords • 48.235 Synonyms • 5.303 Translations • 28.368 Pronunciations • 155.291 Cross-references

0-9 A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


beer (GB)
cerveza (ES)
bière (F)
birra (I)
cerveja (PO)

Which came first - beer or Wine? Beer was in Mesopotamia at least 6,000 to maybe 8,000 years ago. It is probably still before Wine the first man-made alcoholic beverage. Beer and wine were the earliest components of the drinking culture, In Egypt Bread was half-baked with water around 4,000 BC and a kind of beer was made. The god of fertility Osiris the Egyptians are said to have taught wine growing and beer production. In Sumerian Gilgamesh, which over 2700 BC. BC reports the development of a prehistoric man named Enkidu to "cultured man" is told. He is offered beer that he had never known before. He drank seven cups of it and his heart became very light. In this condition, he washed himself and became human.

Beer - beer glasses with light beer, Altbier, Pilsner and Budweiser

In the famous Codex of the Babylonian king Hammurabi (1728-1686 BC) laws about wine and beer are formulated. Among other things, brewing regulations and price caps for beer are included. In Babylonia there are said to have been around 70 types of beer. The beers were made with myrtle, saffron and anise seasoned and (what the hops are used for today) preserved with ox bile and henbane. In ancient cultures, beer was mostly the everyday drink of the common people. The wine (especially better) was reserved due to the more elaborate production of the ruling class and the priests.

The Roman historian Tacitus (55-120) writes about the drinking habits of the Germanic tribes along the banks of the Rhine. He reports that viticulture is unknown to them. However, they bought it from Celts (Gauls) and Romans. However, some tribes such as the Suebi had banned the purchase of wine. In any case, the predominant and preferred drink of the Germanic tribes was beer. The Romans made fun of it and Emperor Julian (331-363) wrote a famous ridicule poem (extract): What are you - a wine? Where are you from? I don't know you, I swear by wine. The wine tastes like the gods' potion, but you taste like a goat's stench. A large-scale production of beer began in Europe in the 9th century, at the time of Kaiser Charlemagne (742-814). As with wine, it was the Roman Catholic monasteries church who cultivated beer brewing. But beer only became a competitive product for wine in the later Middle Ages, mainly because it was subject to high taxes and was significantly more expensive. In the 18th and 19th centuries, the brewery finally developed into an important economic branch.

Water, hops and malt - nothing else . A well-known brewery advertises with this slogan. These three basic materials are often included in the purity regulations of the breweries, with the oldest dating from the 15th century. This is to express that no additives are added. Amazingly, that is yeast not mentioned as a component. The simple reason is that in the past people didn't even know about the effect of yeast as an indispensable part of the brewing process. Because the fermentation done spontaneous without human intervention by yeast from the air. The malt is mostly made from barley, but also wheat, rice and corn fermentative Process made. A mixture is prepared for fermentation by adding water and hops. The use of hops was first mentioned in the 8th century. This gives the typical bitter, aromatic taste and also has a preserving effect.

Beer - 5 bottles of beer

Malt contains a large amount of fermentable sugar, which is then also used in the yeast species used in wine Saccharomyces cerevisiae is fermented. In comparison to wine, beer generally has a much lower one alcohol content between 3.5 to 6% vol. However, there are also strong beers up to 12% and more. The numerous types of beer differ in the type of grain, type of fermentation (top-fermented, bottom-fermented), hops, original wort, color and, if necessary, additives (e.g. Belgian raspberry beer). In traditional wine countries like Germany and Austria the amount of beer consumed is still higher than that of wine. Beer has long lost its reputation as a “simple drink”, and there are already beer tastings. By the way, resembles a rice wine the production of much more beer than wine. Beer is the classic drink when using the Zutrinkens in student associations.

The one from 1920 to 1933 prohibition in the United States According to the provisions defined in the "National Prohibition Act", beer was also affected by the ban, since all beverages with an alcohol content of more than 0.5% vol were considered "intoxicating beverages". The big beer producers survived this time with the production of so-called Near Beer, but many thousands of smaller breweries disappeared from the market forever.

Light beer: Flo422 , public domain , link
Altbier: By Johann H. Addicks, Wikipedia., CC BY-SA 3.0 , Link
Pilsner: By Wolfgang Sauber - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0 , Link
Norbert FJ Tischelmayer
Bottles: By Øyvind Holmstad - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0 , Link

World's largest wine knowledge database, made with by our author Norbert Tischelmayer.

About the Glossary

Calendar EVENTS NEAR YOU To Online-Events

Privacy Notice: ×

Cookies facilitate the provision of our services. By using our services, you agree that we use cookies.