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History of Beer Part 1: Beer in the Ancient World


From the shores of ancient Mesopotamia, to modern day Texas, the art of beer drinking spans all cultures, genders, nations, and religions. The history of beer is long and rich, and its origins can not yet be known for sure. Any grain that contains certain sugars can undergo spontaneous fermentation due to wild yeasts in the air. It is quite possible that beer developed independently with the domestication of grain, and that different cultures discovered its delicious taste throughout the word. In fact chemical tests on ancient pottery suggest that beer was developed at least 7000 years ago. 

Ancient beers were much more thick than modern beers, and had to be consumed with drinking straws to avoid the bitter solids left over from fermentation. In the BC era, beer was used by a variety of different cultures for different reasons. Ancient Nubians used beer as an antibiotic medication, while the Egyptian Aristocracy used beer as part of their daily routine. 

Although beer brewing and drinking was common throughout the world, its popularity grew exponentially during medieval times. While wine was still the preferred drink of the bourgeoisie, lower class communities often enjoyed beer instead, due to its cheaper costs. In the beginning of the 8th century the use of hops first developed, and in the 13th century in Germany it became more common in the flavoring aspect of the brewing process. Germany also made innovations to the brewing process itself which nearly doubled the consumption of beer. Throughout the next few centuries hops spread to England which helped in the mass production of beers. Through most of the middle ages beer was made through home brew, but towards the 13th and 14th centuries mass production and increased consumption of beer occurred.

The brewing process has been developing for centuries, and now ... we are finally in the Renaissance of beer. There is more innovation and experimentation with beer than in any time of history. Scholars and college students alike are able to enjoy beer. NoCoast prides itself on our ability to innovate, and collaborate with fellow beer lovers. Beer is a drink that brings people of all cultures and belief systems together. 

Be sure to check back next time for History of Beer Part 2: Beer and the Industrial Revolution. 

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