Monday, December 31, 2007

US & Canada beer

look at this website. if you happen to be travelling or living in a major city in the US or Canada, you can find good beer using google maps. if you are in europe, you don't have to look too hard.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

hops


hops protect beer against contamination. they also improve the taste of the beer.

hops boiled for a long time add to the bitterness of beer
hops boiled for about 15 minutes give it a "hoppy" flavor, which could be many things depending on the type used.
hops boiled for just 5 minutes add to the aroma of the beer, giving it resinous floral aroma, somewhat akin to hashish.

these are two ounces of styrian golding hops

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

So, the evil wins this time?

I have mixed feelings after reading this. Sure I'm not religious and haven't been to a midnight mass for ages and I understand the church's concerns, but still... Is this a compromise? Couldn't the police do better than advising to change the time? What's next then?

Drunks force churches to cancel midnight mass

A growing number of Catholic churches are cancelling midnight mass and holding Christmas Eve services earlier in the evening due to fears of disruption from drunken revellers.


Clergy are also concerned about worshippers trying to make their way home in the face of the threat of street violence and drunken driving. The move is reported by the Roman Catholic magazine, the Tablet.


It said: "Gun crime, rowdy crowds leaving pubs and dangerous drivers have forced many churches to celebrate their first Mass of Christmas Day in the early evening of Christmas Eve.
(Guardian)

Friday, December 14, 2007

Hero... or retard

A man nearly died from alcohol poisoning after quaffing a liter (two pints) of vodka at an airport security check instead of handing it over to comply with new carry-on rules, police said Wednesday. (news)

But he didn't die after all. I wonder which vodka it was...

Sunday, December 02, 2007

frasier



hard cider and "amber" ale. unspoiled.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

cost of beer?

here is some data on costs for all US commercial brewers in 1990.

value of beer produced: $47 bn
cost of malt: $616 mn
cost of grains: $280 mn
cost of hops: $40 mn
cost of cans: $2.8 bn
cost of bottles: $1.1 bn
cost of other packaging materials: $900 mn
brewery payroll: $2.378 bn
brewery maintenence: $1.12 bn
energy costs: $220 mn
wholesale payroll: $2.674 bn
advertising: $1.161 bn
federal taxes: $1.71 bn
state taxres: $1.72 bn

Source: Handbook of Brewing. 1995. Hardwick ed.

combined ingredient costs are less than almost every other line item!

new advances in brewing

Japanese scientists produce a tomato beer

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Thursday, November 08, 2007

appalachia


bottled beer. this picture was taken a week ago. it turns out that they have all gone bad, because there is a bacterial infection from the siphon hose i used to fill the bottles.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

It's no Colombia...


That Latvians know a thing or two about beer. If you're ever in that part of the world, sit down for a pint. It'll make the already gorgeous women even better....

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Pivoing in Colombia!

I spent the last week of October in Colombia as an elections observer for the regional elections. It was quite hectic, but I still managed to make some time to have a pivo or two between dodging bullets and shooting coke. Just kidding, that's a lie, obviously I had more than one or two pivos!

Seriously though, I didn't actually have that many pivos because during election time, they have this thing called the ley seco or dry law. That means that no booze can legally be sold between 6pm Thursday on the week of the elections and 6am Monday (the election took place on Sunday).
The operative word here is "legally" because I still saw some drunks roaming the streets.

Most of my pivo intake happened on the last night. After training, travel, observing the elections, writing reports and debriefing it was time to unwind. My friend Fer (pictured above) and I somehow ended up being the only girls in a crowd of 10-15 of our male friends. It wasn't too bad, we always had someone to dance with and got one or two free drinks!

While I can't remember, in detail, the taste of the two types of Colombia pivo I tried in order to produce a complex analysis, I can remember this: it was dobre! Definitely recommended.

Monday, October 22, 2007

pivo lab


on the left, we have a heffeweissen ale, which has been fermenting for two days. it is made with wheat rather than barley, though it has some different kinds of roasted malted barley for flavor, and has hallertau hops for bitterness and aroma. on the left is a belgian abbey ale at 8 days. it will be quite strong (10-11% alc), partially because of the addition of brewer's candi. each of these will produce 40-48 bottles of high-quality, homemade pivo

Welcome

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Please join me in welcoming a new Pivo Terrorist in the club - Mr. Jesse Lovegren, who has impressed us with his ability and passion in beer / alcohol in various occasions around the world (see attached photos as evidence). With Mr. Lovegren's contribution, we can see that our world_pivo empire's map is expanding rapidly and, especially, invading unconquered land massively. Keep up the good work, kids. Live the dream.

Last attempt for pivo in PragueEnough said
I like...

Friday, October 19, 2007

Open your eyes and get in action. It's our time for a reward.

A New Zealand brewer is offering a lifetime supply of free beer in exchange for the return of a laptop stolen in a break-in. (article)

Japanese beer for kids

I bet Gokkie will love this.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Life Is Far Too Short To Drink Cheap Beer - 10 Ways To Maximize Your Beer Value

First, stop thinking of beer as a commodity. It’s not toilet paper, or screws, or an all-you-can-eat buffet. Stop thinking of beer in terms of the bland, yellow, fizzy beverages foisted on the American public by huge brewing conglomerates.

Beer is a food. It is made from grain (almost always barley), hops, yeast, and water. Except for the hops, and if the grain was milled into flour instead of malted for brewing, you’d have a basic bread recipe. When is bread best? As fresh as possible. It is just as true for beer. To stretch the beer as bread analogy a little further, industrial-brewed American light lagers are the beer equivalent of Wonder Bread. Don’t you want a nice, hearty loaf?


And here goes the 10 ways. Awesome.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Beer losing its appeal

British men are due to call time on the pint within a generation, according to a study published today which shows they are more prepared than ever before to give up beer in favour of burgundy.

As male drinkers steadily leave behind their traditional tipple, the report claims that by 2039, when today's schoolchildren are well into their drinking years, there could be more men quaffing wine than downing pints in pubs and clubs.
(article)

WTF is up with British men???!!!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Enta Ya Habibi - Paulaner Weisbier



Need I say more? This is far and away my favourite beer on the planet. U Fleku beer gets close, but I'll take a pint of Weissbier and a bratwurst any day of the week.

My first experience with the stuff was at the Munich airport. I was on a short layover to Cologne, so I decided to sit down at one of the many places to get beer. I ordered one of the meals. It came with a couple of white Munich sausages, a pretzel, and a beautiful pint of beer. When I first saw it, I was in love. The glass was huge, the head was perfect, and the cloudy nature of the beer made it so drinkable.

I sat there in bliss consuming every last drop. It was the first of many in Germany. Every time I went to a restaurant, I was sure to order a weissbier. It's just so good. So much so that I had a friend bring me some when she came to visit me in Egypt.


Rating: 5 - Yes, if it and bratwurst were the last things on earth, I would choose the beer.

(that wraps up my beer ratings. Stay tuned for more as a new journey begins.)

Kostrizter Schwarzbier


Unlike those other beers, I can tell you that this was a fine beer. Schwarzbier in German refers to Black or Dark beer. And this variation, the Kostritzer variation, is a fine version of the Schwarzbier. It is a very satisfying finish and great almost any time of the year or day.

There was a slight sweetness to it, but the mildly bitter aftertaste reminded you that it was in fact so black you couldn't see through it. Not like Guinness, mind you, but close enough.


Rating: 4

Altenmuster Winterbier


Yet another seasonal beer. The only thing I know is that it had had the old-school openning style. Caps were too good for this bottle.

I remember little about this beer as well, other than that it went down a lot easier than some of the earlier beers. We're in a sad state when beers can no longer be distinguished.


Rating: 3.5

Beihnachts Bier


Christmas beer is good right around Christmas. I don't know why. Just because it has a picture of Father Christmas on the bottle, doesn't make it special, does it?

Well, apparently it does. Of all the beers I sampled during my week of sampling time, this is the beer I remember least. Luckily, I have a sheet that tells me how I rated each beer. Otherwise, I'd probably forget everything.

Based on my rating, I would say that this was a fine beer. Given its novelty, I would suggest sampling this beer when it becomes available. It'll help break the monotony of your everyday beers, but probably leave you begging for the same monotony after two weeks.


Rating: 3.5

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Don't Forget: Drink a Beer—Or Two—Daily!

Hurrah! Yet another reason to drink pivo!!

Thank you science, for telling us something we already know. Pivo is awesome.

"You may be hard-pressed to recall events after a night of binge drinking, but a new report suggests that low to moderate alcohol consumption may actually enhance memory.
"There are human epidemiological data of others indicating that mild [to] moderate drinking may paradoxically improve cognition in people compared to abstention," says Maggie Kalev, a research fellow in molecular medicine and pathology at the University of Auckland in New Zealand and a co-author of an article in The Journal of Neuroscience describing results of a study she and other researchers performed on rats. "This is similar to a glass of wine protecting against heart disease, however the mechanism is different." "

Nazdravi!!

Cooooolest - Beer Diet

The title says all.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Kostritzer Edel Pils


A typical Thuringen Pils is Kostritzer Edel Pils. When I look back at that sentence, I realize that there are at least three words I am unable to pronounce correctly. Give me three or four of these beers and I probably couldn't prounce any words in that sentence correctly.

What do I remember about this beer? Very little. It could've been the the quantity of alcohol I had consumed that evening. Who knows? What I do know is that there was a box of this stuff on Johanna's parents' house for most of my time there. Surprisingly, the contents of the box steadily disappeared each day.

The beer is, to its credit, a gentle pilsner. Goes down easy without much in the way of harsh flavour. But once again I must state my general distaste of pilsner to the predominantly naturalized Czech readers of this blog. I'm really asking for it, aren't I?


Rating: 3.5

Thursday, September 27, 2007

It's between winning and losing - living and dying

Recent Czech press reports allege that Anheuser-Busch had been in talks with a close, though unofficial, adviser to the Czech Prime Minister about buying the last major post-communist brewery still in state hands — which also happened to be the Czech namesake of its flagship brand. (Time)

Brothers and sisters, it's time for us to stand up and fight, fight for every gulp... the 0.5 litre in front of your face.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Jenny Never Looks Drunk


How come Jenny never looks drunk?

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Apoldaer Festbock


I don't know what either of the two words in the beer's name mean. "Apoldaer" sounds like the name of a high-speed chairlift at a ski hill, while "Festbock" seems like a festival of some sort. That said, the picture of the cute little goat on the label makes it an inviting beer.

And inviting it was. I felt like having a festival while drinking the veritable central Geman pilsner (I hope it is from central Germany). That said, it didn't quite reach the level of "Oktoberfest," it was more of a Fall Fair.


Rating: 3.5

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Wernesgruner Pils


Pilsner is definitely a popular beer in the central part of Germany. It may not be consumed in the volumes of Czech pilsner (on a per capita level, at least), but it can hold its own when stacked up against its competitors.

I looked at this beer and thought, "Hmm...I see the word 'legende' which is probably something like 'legend.' This beer must be good then...it's like 'legendary pilsner.'" As you can see, Highlander is looking on in the background probably confident of its malty brew, but secretly nervous of what my tastebuds might think.

To tell you the truth, the Wernesgruner went down okay. Nothing special, that's for sure, but this wasn't a beer I had a distaste for. Take that Highlander.


Rating: 3

Friday, August 24, 2007

Belated - June travels

A tip of the iceberg of my fun Europe trips in June...

[From Paris with love]

Green Face-Off

[From Budapest with love]

Li'l wine and cheese party at Karolina's, Budapest

[From Vienna with love]

Naschmarkt, Vienna

[From Frankfurt with love]

Amy's wedding, Frankfurt

Sorry for being absent from most of the photos. I was too busy having fun and keeping up with the drinking!
More photos here.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Dangers of Pivo Consumption

Pivo can make you more likely to do many things that are fairly harmless:
-Talk to people you wouldn't normally talk to
-Try to dance
-Make out with people
-Go streaking
-Fall asleep in unlikely places
-Vomit
-Think you can sing

The list goes on and on. These things are not that serious.

However, at times consuming too much pivo can make you do something you will regret into eternity. Because you will be dead. Like this guy. He decided to try and play with bears.

Bears eat man at beer festival
"BELGRADE, Serbia (Reuters) -- A 23-year old Serb was found dead and half-eaten in the bear cage of Belgrade Zoo at the weekend during the annual beer festival.

The man was found naked, with his clothes lying intact inside the cage. Two adult bears, Masha and Misha, had dragged the body to their feeding corner and reacted angrily when keepers tried to recover it.

"There's a good chance he was drunk or drugged. Only an idiot would jump into the bear cage," zoo director Vuk Bojovic told Reuters.

Local media reported that police found several mobile phones inside the cage, as well as bricks, stones and beer cans."

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

A Tragedy Indeed....

Devastating news as received by a friend who wrote:

I almost cried when I saw this picture. It is absolutely gut wrenching.

A friend sent this photo of a horrible highway accident in Germany. The picture may be kind of hard to take for some of you. If you look closely you can see what appear to be some survivors of the accident still in the wreckage. Although the picture is quite graphic, it makes you realize how quickly our loved ones can be taken from us. My friend stayed on the scene to help and even though he performed mouth to mouth on quite a few of them, none apparently survived.

------
I have confidence that if this were to happen around any of the pivo terrorists, we would work quickly and diligently to save as many friends as possible.


Thursday, July 19, 2007

Beer on a stick

After 3 hours in the freezer, Beer as ice cream confection isn't so far-fetched.

Beeripop?

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

And the Romantical Break-Up on Charlie Bridge

Claire - sunrise at charlie bridgeJenski - sunrise at charlie bridge

Dobre Pivo Lil reunion

You know you've been traveling way too much when your guest is having a family reunion at your flat, throwing a dinner party, inviting your friends, and sending you a facebook wall post "we are cooking at yours, you are invited, BYOB, hope you can make it."

What drink should I bring though?

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Missing kegs...

With metal prices rising, beer makers say they expect to lose hundreds of thousands of kegs and millions of dollars this year as those stainless steel holders of brew are stolen and sold for scrap. (Details)

Oh no!

On a related note, how soon do you guys estimate the beer industry will get into trouble with missing beer glasses? ...at our stealing rate, of course.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Beer power

What else can you do with the hundreds of empty beer bottles besides walking your ass off carrying them to the supermarkets for 3 kc each?

This.

Call us Chinese genius.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Rock God Al's last and only gig in Praha

Good show, Al. You made us proud. And I liked the look on the passers-by's faces when I walked back home with your bass at midnight... made me almost convinced and impressed with myself.

pivo and bass at the same time...

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Lubzer Urkraft


At 6%, a couple of Lubzer Urkrafts will set you down a solid path to happiness. Unfortunately, that path is filled with bitter tastes and one hell of a finish.

I'm not sure to say about this beer other than that it should probably be avoided if you're into milder beers. For those that like a little bit of punch, though, this may be the beer for you.


Rating: 2

Method #189 of Ingesting Pivo


KEG STAND aka KEG DIVE

Procedure

1. The person puts both hands on the keg.
2. Friends pick up the person by the legs and tip them upward, as if they were doing a handstand on the keg.
3. The person wraps their lips around the tap, opens it, and drinks.
4. The surrounding audience and awaiting participants chant the number of seconds for which the person is drinking.
5. The person shakes their leg (or head) to signal to friends when they can't drink anymore and need to get down.
6. Repeat.

**7. Do not let drunk people suspend their friends, there is the chance they may drop them onto the keg. This may result in a plethora of injuries from bruised ribs and slight internal bleeding to a concussion.

When you think keg you usually think undergraduate students, possibly in a fraternity, drinking irresponsibly. What you got was a bunch of master's students in their early, mid and late twenties who had never done keg stands before (I was not one of these people). Much like Claireski's smazeny syr cherry was popped on camera, there were many photos representing the keg cherry popping on camera. Good times all around. Highly recommended!

Monday, May 21, 2007

How people from one same island make fun of each other's accent

You know too much vodka and Red Bull has been served when Claire's talk-to-random-strangers-on-the-street bug comes out and strikes again.

4:30am
Claire: Where are you from?
Brit stranger devouring gyros: Sheffield. You?
Claire: Manchester.
Brit stranger devouring gyros: What do you do here?
Claire: I teach English.
Brit stranger devouring gyros: AND you talk like THAT!

Friday, May 18, 2007

Lausitzer Porter


Lausitzer Porter. A dark beer. I seem to recall it being a tough finish. It's one of those meal beers you should only drink on a partially-full stomach, not after a filling German meal full of rostbratl and bratwurst. Mmm...bratwurst.

Unfortunately, this beer just wasn't for me. Other black beers have been fine, but there was something about this one that just didn't work.

Rating: 2

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Start looking for cheap tickets to Canadia?

Just up our alley, the Beer Fest in Montreal!

It's "the brewing event of the year for beerlovers and gourmets!" Daily activities include the Beer Playoffs and Cheese Workshops! Whoohoo. I'm checking my wallet to see if I can make it to this one. Will be sure to tell you alllll about it!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Beer and pizza in one bottle? Yeeeewwww

Beer and pizza are tastes that, for many of us, just seem to go together. But, beer that tastes like pizza?

Something’s brewing in a garage in St. Charles. Tom Seefurth is mixing up a concoction he'll eventually pour out as beer – pizza beer. (details)

Honestly I'm quite disgusted and feeling a bit sick now. For me this is just wrong. What do you guys say?

Monday, May 07, 2007

an alcoholic beer taster - really??

Fakt yo

Read this and you too could get a major corporation to not only help you form and maintain your beer habit but also pay for it when you decide it's a problem - interesting dilemma ...

Will the chocolate tasting employees of Mars, Nestle and Cadburys be jumping on the band waggon soon i wonder...

Not news

Study links alcohol ads to adolescent drinking

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Duckstein


I have had this beer in Canada...on two occasions...but experiencing it much closer to its home gave it a whole new meaning.

If you're looking for a hearty beer that gets you drunk quick, look no further than Duckstein. It packs quite the alcohol content and is dark and malty (although not nearly to the extend of the Highlander).

Unfortunately, a pint is an awful lot of the stuff to ingest in one sitting. It just doesn't taste good enough to want to drink it. You kind of have to will yourself to do it, knowing that the reward at the end is a nice happy feeling.

Rating: 2.

Friday, May 04, 2007

When you've run out of pivo...

Back in Brno the kids were fond of drinking a fruity cocktail- strawberry juice and Bozkov rum (jahoda a bozkov!). A friend recently emailed me with the news that it turns out that drink is actually healthy! The article states, "According to new research published in the Journal Of The Science Of Food And Agriculture, the antioxidant capacity of strawberries can be significantly enhanced when they are combined with ethanol, the type of alcohol found in rum, vodka, tequila and other spirits. Those antioxidants attack free-radicals that can cause cancer, arthritis and heart disease". So, whenever pivo is in short supply, reach for second best: strawberry juice + hard liquor. It could prevent a plethora of diseases!

**Just to note, pivo does have its fair share of nutritional value as well. You can find Vitamin B, carbohydrates, proteins, and minerals such as phosphoric acid.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Reply, recap, reactivation, and recovery

Thanks sooooo much for all the birthday wishes from you guys via pressies, blog comments, emails, sms's, skype messages, phone calls and buying me drinks in person!

I've replied to most of your messages but I don't remember if I replied to all and I don't want to miss one. So here's a big shout out to everyone: THANK YOU!

Recap of a few replies of choice cuts:
Yes, Adam, the club of old single people is awesome and we have loads of fun here. You'll join in a few months so I won't give it away just yet.
Jezza, I agree with you that how lucky rike me one can be to have a birthday on a Saturday. Yeah, a belated Happy 35th to you, too.
Arunka, forgot to tell you that believe it or not this time I even replayed a few of our dancing moves from last year's Jenski's D'n'B Till You Stink Birthday Celebration Program. It felt so futsking dobře!
Sathe, thanks for the birthday drinks. Don't worry about your drinking skills... it's not you, it's just that when me and shots get together crazy things do happen. You've lived up the legend well and you are still THE legend.
Digs, thanks for calling. I hope our drunken call for return later on did wake you up and confuse you. Have a great trip along the silk road and talk soon, POS.
Claire, when are you coming over to drink that bottle of beverage with me? Bring cucumbers.

I still can't get over how many friends I managed to meet up this weekend and how many of them I haven't seen for over 2 years. I've stopped feeling surprised of how small the world can be especially after AIESEC, but when the reactivation of friendship really happened this massively and condensed within 2 days in a city that half of us don't even live in, I was still so overwhelmed that it's so hard to let go, beyond belief.

And this incredible mixture of happiness of reunion, sadness of having to leave soon, and awareness of how many people I have to catch up on how many topics in how limited time, would inevitably lead to one sole solution for all of us: drink like there is no tomorrow. It worked, perfectly.

Thanks again for the great time and all the birthday wishes. You guys are all so futsking amazing and the one reason I'm proud that I've lived so many years to meet you and are never worried about getting old regretting my life wasn't incredible enough.

From Brussels with love.

From Brussels with love

Friday, April 27, 2007

Highlander


When you think "Highlander," beer doesn't normally come to mind. When you think "beer," whiskey malt doesn't usually come to mind. Well, Highlander Whiskey Malt Beer has defied all convention and gone with an unlikely combination.

It's a bit too "unlikely" for my tastes. Not having been born in Ireland, Scotland, or England, I do not appreciate the subtle nuances of fine malt whiskey. And I, therefore, certainly wouldn't appreciate the subtle nuances of a whiskey malt beer.

It was a tough finish, I must say. On the bright side, it motivated me to have another beer to rid my mouth of the whiskey malt taste.

Rating: 2

My Rating System

As mentioned before, I will be rating the 17 bottles of German beer I got as a Christmas gift from my good friends Benjamin and Johanna. Before I make the inagural rating, I need to introduce you to my rating system.

It's a fairly simple "1-5" system, but pay special attention to what each number is:

1 - Only good for washing my mouth out after vomitting from better beer
2 - I'd consider feeding it to my dog
2.5 - I would only drink it after a few better beers
3 - I would actually pay for this beer at the bar
3.5 - I wouldn't be embarrassed bringing this beer to friends' houses
4 - I would keep it in the house
5 - If this beer and bratwurst were the last things on earth, I would choose this beer

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Scientists crack beer-froth enigma


guinness
Originally uploaded by jennyhu.
There is the nagging question of whether life exists other than on Earth. The enduring mystery of who made us -- and why.

And then there is this: Why does the foam on a pint of lager quickly disappear but the head on a pint of Guinness linger?

Answers to questions 1 and 2 are still being sought, but the Great Beer Riddle, at least, may soon be solved.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Why thinking hurts

The brain-damaging effects of alcohol strike women more quickly than men, a new study conducted in Russia confirms.

Female alcoholics performed worse on a number of tests of neurocognitive function compared with males, Dr. Barbara Flannery from RTI International in Baltimore and her colleagues found.


However, Flannery cautioned in an interview with Reuters Health, the findings aren't good news for alcohol-dependent men. "Women are vulnerable to the extent to which they will experience the negative consequences of alcohol abuse and alcoholism more rapidly than men, but men will also experience it -- the same kinds of effects," she said.
(Reuters)

Ah is that why it hurts everytime I try to think? Wait, what did you say again? I heard something about alcohol... don't remember any more. Never mind. Pass me a pivo prosim.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Prazdroj and Budvar roll out fres

For the first time in their modern history, Plzeňský Prazdroj and Budějovický Budvar have introduced beers to the Czech Republic that are wholly divorced from their respective flagship brands, Pilsner Urquell and Budvar.

The new beers — Budvar’s prole-inspired Pardál and Prazdroj’s history-soaked Master — together represent a jostling to the yeasty vat that is traditional Czech beer culture, and a new level of competition between the rivals. (The Prague Post)

Pardal or Master?

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Reasons Why I Love Kenya One: Tusker Rocks.

When planning for Egypt I was looking for a back-up plan in case Egypt didn’t work out due to various reasons. A conspiracy of invading Kenya for a week was revealed and the timing would fit just perfectly. I then enthusiastically initiated a half-self-invitation (half because me thinks the plan was “randomly” revealed to me for a reason) and one of the original organizers, a dirty old Turk, generously accepted it (gasp!) and indicated that he wouldn’t mind me since my job was to look pretty and bring him juice boxes. It wasn’t so hard to fool him even though he knew for a fact that I wasn’t good at either. Note to self from this part of the story is keep your self-esteem severely low, if still any left, when you travel and good things will happen.

So wandering down a street in Cairo I walked in a travel agency and bought the cheapest flight tickets. Next thing was to convince Pilli that arriving in Nairobi at 4am and having 10 hours to kill alone before she came in wouldn’t be that bad of an idea. It failed. Of course, what was I thinking, Pilli is the most superb host ever. I luckily ran into a lady at Nairobi airport who was waiting for her friend to pick her up and offered to give me a ride and drop me off in downtown. I loved this country already. When I had gotten to know most of the hotel staff and was just about to exchange meaningful life stories with them during the 4 hours in Hilton Nairobi, Pilli’s brother collected me from the lobby. All good times have to come to an end but the end of one is just the beginning of the next. The moment I showed up at the door as a totally random foreigner that they had never met before and was greeted warm-heartedly by Pilli’s whole family I knew that was bound to be a great time.

And it was, absolutely.

To be specially pointed out is that Tusker is THE beer in Kenya and it rocks. (It’s obvious that I need to prove that this entry is valid for this blog and that my personal travels do matter for a good reason.) It will apparently go extremely well with Nyama Choma too but I didn’t get to try the combination. Can’t complain though because at least I had the delicious Nyama Choma and didn’t miss out on the experience. Al is going to keep calling me “fucking culturalist” for this one even though I still don’t know what that means. I mean of course you get attention talking about culture shit and I like attention; and actually if you could do deep and thoughtful about cultures you probably get respect too instead of just attention but I guess I’ll live with what I deserve. I still prefer hunting wild animals and tossing baby zebras on BBQ with other Asian tourists on the grassland while lions are ripping up and devouring buffaloes to answering why Chinese eat dogs; and I still don’t bother to pretend I’m a better person because I don’t eat animals (most of the time) and I’ll keep ordering pig ears, salty snails and chicken feet for foreigners for their “cultural experiences”.

Thanks for the great time, to everyone we met on the road, to all the old and new friends, to Tusker beer, and to the breathtaking African motherland. Till we meet again.

Tusker

Beer is the basis of modern static civ­ilization

"Beer is the basis of modern static civ­ilization," began Bamforth, Anheuser-Busch Endowed Professor of Brewing Science at the University of California, Davis. "Because before beer was discovered, people used to wander around and follow goats from place to place. And then they realized that this grain [barley] could be grown and sprouted and made into a bread and crumbled and converted into a liquid which gave a nice, warm, cozy feeling. So gone were the days that they followed goats around. They stayed put while the grain grew and while the beer was brewed. And they made villages out of their tents. And those villages became towns, and those towns became cities. And so here we are in New York, thanks to beer." Another syllogism ended his address: "He who drinks beer sleeps well. He who sleeps well cannot sin. He who does not sin goes to heaven. The logic is impeccable."

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Poor barley harvests threaten beer quality

The homegrown barley that’s a key ingredient in Czech beer is a delicate, fickle crop, and has suffered through tough growing seasons in recent years. Increasingly unreliable barley harvests have left Czech brewers with two choices: import barley and raise beer prices, as Pilsner Urquell manufacturer Plzeňský Prazdroj did last year, or lower their standards and make beer from lower-quality barley. - Oh No!

At the Agricultural Research Institute in Kroměříž, south Moravia, researchers are experimenting with growing a strain of “naked,” or hull-less, barley, which could create a hardier crop that also produces higher yields for use in malting and making beer. Such strains have been grown for years in North America, mostly for feeding livestock, but have not been sufficiently tested in Czech soil and climates.

And, at the Research Institute of Brewing and Malting in Brno, researchers have been working at manipulating varieties of sweet pea, chickpea and cowpea plants that could replace barley as the malting grain in beer. - Wayhey!

Both projects are funded by state research grants. - Ta da!

(The Prague Post)

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Words of Wisdom

Best Thing for Getting the Taste Out

Woman #1: My throat hurts. I guess I need another beer.
Woman #2: Mine too. Good idea.

--72nd & Central Park West

Overheard by: A. Pincus


via Overheard in New York, Apr 5, 2007

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Alcoholic Drinks that Help Lessen your Hangover



A piece of helpful and important information for you. Let me know if any of them helps. I hope I could find it out myself one day but my problem is that I don't get hangover. Most of the time I'm still drunk the next morning...

Blogging from Beerse, Belgium with love.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

The beer in the machine

Probably not for the first time, beer has inspired new technology.

Ladies and gentlemen, smart beer vending machines on Prague's streets for you from now on. Welcome to Czech Republic!

Monday, April 02, 2007

Are you joking? I don't know, but I'm laughing!

Funny Beer Brewing

"Israeli entrepreneurs reportedly have developed a beer that contains laughing gas...two Israeli chemical engineers have come up with a way of incorporating nitrous oxide into an imported Czech beer."

As if things aren't already funny when you're drinking pivo, this pair just had to take it one step further. People would have laugh at my jokes whether they liked it or not! Can't wait until this hits the market!

Friday, March 30, 2007

Top 10 Beer Myths

Drinkingbeer.net is such a gem. :)

Most agreeable: Beer myth No. 10: Women don't like beer.

Of course we do. See what our very much respected and missed Indiana Jones of Beer had to tell you:

"His favorite and perhaps most startling message was that beer is the most feminine of beverages. He said that in almost all ancient societies, beer was considered a gift from a goddess, never a male god. Most often, women began the brewing process by chewing grains and spitting them into a pot to form a fermentable mass."

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Pilsner Urquel


Jenny, Claire: You're obviously very familiar with this particular potable. It's the Cadillac of Czech pilsners, and probably pilsners all around the world. If you like that style of beer, I wouldn't hesitate in buying about 10 cartloads of the stuff.

However, up against German Weisbier and German Darks, the Pilsner left me wishing I had never heard of the two previous beers and that I was in a Czech pub downing pilsner one after the other.

So, without disrespecting the owners of this blog, I will remove this beer from the competition as it is not technically German.

Pivo=Better than a Boyfriend

Our fellow pivo terrorist Al recently wrote a post reflecting on why he does not have a girlfriend. His conclusion was that pivo IS his girlfriend!

After reading and analyzing this post Ms. Jenski and I realized something completely different with respect to our romantical lives and came up with the following- Pivo is not our boyfriend, pivo is BETTER than a boyfriend:

Pivo adapts to your moods

Pivo doesn't get jealous when you talk to other guys

There are lots of different kinds of pivo: you can try as many as you like, more than one at a time even-- and no one will call you a slut

Pivo doesn’t care if it is your first drink and doesn’t mind you comparing it to other pivos

You don't have to worry about how pivo will get along with your friends

It's not hard to find the right pivo for you

Pivo is always there for you, at any time of the day and won’t make up excuses for not coming

Pivo will never turn up to you with a lipstick mark on it (unless it's your own)

When you get sick of pivo you can just puke it all out

Pivo can keep you entertained all day/night long

Pivo always satisfies you

Pivo doesn't play emotional games

Even if pivo makes you feel bad one day, you know that you'll ALWAYS want pivo in your life no matter what

Pivo doesn't mind if you haven't shaved your legs for a week

Pivo doesn’t make you worry about your looks; in fact when pivo realizes that it makes you put on weight it works on improving its own quality (light pivo anyone?)

You can tell if a pivo is bad and you should end your association with it after just one sip

You can tell if the pivo is velky (large) or maly (small) by just looking at the outside.

You don't have to fake that you like it when you are with a pivo.

When a pivo is finished it can be recharged within the next 10 seconds

Trivia:
One of those pivo-ing Saturday nights a few months back, U Sudu, underground, crowds, noise, drunken conversations at different tables... at one table at the corner:

Al: ...ah I don't like Pilsner that much, it's too bitter. Gambrinus is better.
Jenski: I like Pilsner though. It's strong.
Al: You like strong beer, don't ya?
Jenski: Yeah, maybe that's why I drink fast... it's so bitter that you just chug it down as quickly as possible…yeah you finish it fast this way, so I like to get a litre of it in one of those big-ass long glasses and it'll go for a longer time...

[Alex, who just arrived in Prague and hadn't got to know the people that well, walks over and sits down next to Jenski, wanting to join in the conversation.]

Al: So let me summarize, you like hard, fast, long and long?
Jenski: Yes.
Alex with priceless look on his face: What am I getting into?

[Alex stands up and walks away]

Jenski, watching Alex walk away, shrugs, turns back to Al: Yes, hard, fast, long and long.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Great minds think alike

Great drinks definitely don't taste alike though, but do great drinkers get wasted alike too?

BrewMe from the southern hemisphere has cordially opened their invitation for beer bottle photos. Unfortunately the fact is that my/us Praha kids' faith in tap beer and its accessibility here would inevitably lead to our shortage of bottle or can photos. Hence I hereby extend the request to the rest of the globe, since I truly believe that T. Ree's recent fondness of pivo should definitely be condoned AND encouraged.

Na Zdravi to the pivo bonded global joint effort to combat alcoholism, that and maybe global warming.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Scary Ideas presents:

Blood beer coasters.

Creepy but it reiterated my mantra: wasting beer is evil. Instead of Scary Idea I say it's an awesome idea.

Don't waste beer.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

St. Patty's in Canada-- with much love!

Unfortunately the closest I could get to Ireland for St. Patty's was my friend's house and a cheesy neighborhood bar. That being said, it was an awesome night!

It started off early evening with quite a few rounds of Flip Cup, a magnificent game that I was first introduced to around this time last year at Big Pig.

My team was on an amazing streak, we lost one round-- but it was due to the substitution of one of the players. Anyway, no one really remembers that, so maybe it didn't really happen?


People were very serious about getting the game right!

We then headed to a cheesy bar that situated right next to a strip club. Keeping it classy!

The cheesy bar did give us these fun hats. I love being Irish for a day! Thanks St. Patrick for giving us a reason to celebrate and indulge in our love of pivo!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Random Beer Name Generator

Your random beer name is:

Dragon-Kettle Wee Heavy


Haha, random!

Generate.

Monday, March 12, 2007

We've just been linked!

...i just found out one of my friends, Jenny Hu, is co-writing a blog about Pivo and their life in Prague, Czech. that's the kinda life i look up to, they can really appreciate the essence of beer, and that's probably something i can never do. -Stan

Awwwww!!!

Girlfriends = Pivo

After many nights sitting alone by myself without the warmth and comfort of a beautiful young lady with an impressive set of jugs, i began to ponder what could be the possible reason for this. Could it possibly be my looks? Surely not, for i truly am a strapping young lad with a face that would make Cleopatra swoon and the body of a modern day Adonnis. Perhaps it is my character? this also i refute, for my mind is a keen as the Eagles eye, my wit sharper than Japanese Steel, and an intellect so deep that all the books in all the world could only fill it enough to whet it's thirst for knoweldge. Modesty aside, i see no other reason why i should need to spend my evenings with nothing but a Pivo. But then, i began to think...Why is it i don't have a girlfriend, but i do have an intimate realationship with my good friend Miss Gambrinus...then it dawned on me, Pivo is my girlfriend! with a little more thinking i realised there are a number of reason why this is true, girlfriends and pivo have a few very similar things in common:

Pivo makes me happy

Pivo makes me sad

I can talk about my pivo all night

Pivo makes me talk crap

Pivo gives head – similarly I like it when pivo goes down

I’m a bad dancer, but my pivo doesn’t mind

Pivo makes me horny

Pivo turns me into a sentimental blubbering idiot

I spend all my money on pivo

I don’t mind being naked in front of a pivo – in fact a pivo often gets me naked

When I come home at night after a hard days work, all I want to see is my pivo

Having lunch with a pivo, I will never run out of things to say

My pivo has some hot mates (Becherovka, Rum…)

I like my English Pivo warm and flat, but I won’t object to a cool bubbly one

If I wake up in the morning with a hangover and ignore the pivo, everyone suffers- If I wake up
in the morning with a hangover and love the pivo, everyone is happy

If I don’t like my current flavour Pivo, I can always toss it out and get a new one

Friday, March 09, 2007

Ready?

Jenny in Prague says:
we'll wear "Prague Drinking Team - Czech me out" t-shirts and get royally messed up on st paddy's in manc

Jenny in Prague says:
and eat fish n chips on the street

Jenny in Prague says:
excited!

Adam-in Xi'an says:
you;re just going there drinking?

Jenny in Prague says:
yep

Jenny in Prague says:
for a weekend

Jenny in Prague says:
friday there and sunday back

Jenny in Prague says:
well apparently i'll get to see a bit of the city

Jenny in Prague says:
but that's not the priority

Jenny in Prague says:
plus i doubt there is anything there worth seeing (what's the No.1 tourist attraction anyway?)

Adam-in Xi'an says:
it's ok. not much to see apart from shops and some museums. though the lake district could be done in a day trip

Jenny in Prague says:
but my friend is considering taking me to see the chinese wholesale market (some warehouse-like thing)

Jenny in Prague says:
and she might drive me to somewhere between manc and leeds

Adam-in Xi'an says:
the museum of industry is quite cool (1st ever train station in the world), plus there is Urbis museum (about cities and urban stuff) and then also a guggenheim museum or something

Jenny in Prague says:
i'm clueless

Adam-in Xi'an says:
between manc and leeds is motorway!

Jenny in Prague says:
sounds exciting!

Adam-in Xi'an says:
the drinking and clubs are good. the pubs are fantastic

Jenny in Prague says:
there you go

Adam-in Xi'an says:
especially the student ones.. cheaper than the fancy ones. although there will be famous football players in the fancy ones.

Jenny in Prague says:
which is your favorite bar? i'll go czech it out on your behalf and have a beer there for you

Jenny in Prague says:
i'm not into football

Adam-in Xi'an says:
also the comedy store on deansgate locks is great. really funn impromptu comedy. go there and laugh for me. since no one in china has a sense of humour!

Jenny in Prague says:
that last line was unnecessary! i'm offended

Adam-in Xi'an says:
its so true!

Jenny in Prague says:
true my arse

Adam-in Xi'an says:
you're not chinese. and you are not in china so dont worry

Adam-in Xi'an says:
come one. see my point of view. the brits have a very unique sense of view

Adam-in Xi'an says:
and stop always bringin your body parts into the conversation!

Jenny in Prague says:
suck my balls

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Refrigerator Will Toss You Can of Beer

With a click of the remote, fashioned from a car's keyless entry device, a small elevator inside the refrigerator lifts a beer can through a hole and loads it into the fridge's catapult arm. A second click fires the device, tossing the beer up to 20 feet - "far enough to get to the couch," he said. (AP)

What a champ!

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Pivo Gadgetry

What's this? A beer mug that will tell you when you're low on beer? Genius! As the description says, it "is perfect for the person who always needs to be told what to do. It is also great if you have previously drunken yourself blind". Luckily, I still have the gift of sight, but I might need this in a few years.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Beautiful, Simply Beautiful

Alia singing on a felucca cruising up and down the Nile. Cairo, Egypt.

RIP, the Indiana Jones of Beer

Alan D. Eames, who cultivated his reputation as "the Indiana Jones of beer" by crawling into Egyptian tombs to read hieroglyphics about beer and voyaging along the Amazon in search of a mysterious lost black brew, died Feb. 10 at his home.

Eames called himself a beer anthropologist, a role that allowed him to expound on subjects like what he put forward as the world's oldest beer ad, dating to roughly 4000 B.C.

Eames followed the golden liquid to 44 countries.

His favorite and perhaps most startling message was that beer is the most feminine of beverages. He said that in almost all ancient societies, beer was considered a gift from a goddess, never a male god. Most often, women began the brewing process by chewing grains and spitting them into a pot to form a fermentable mass. (Denver Post)

A pivo anthropologist who humbled all us pivo terrorists and paled all our pivo pursuing stories and world_pivo paths. RIP. We shall continue your journey, live on the pivo spirit, and make you proud, unstoppable.

Monday, March 05, 2007

I now love Ikea

This weekend Anna and I went on a two day run around Edinburgh to see my old university 'sloochie' Sam. Her hospitality was amazing, as was the amount of good food and wine we inhaled in such a short period of time. Anna and I stayed true to out roots and ordered a pint of Tennants Super, a true Scottish beer, whilst those around us crumbled a fell for girlie drinks




However, I must admit that I eventually ditched the beer for something which has bred a new found sense of respect for Ikea and generally all things Swedish. No, not a cheap yet stylish wooden chest of draws or the beautiful Freddy Ljuengberg (think Arsenal football team), but the best pear cider the world has ever seen - which not only happens to be supremely dobber but to my amazement is also available at your local Ikea - god bless those crazy Swedes for giving me a legitimate reason to go to Ikea.

It's all about the crack...

Or is it?

*
before I start this blog entry i just want to remind everyione that Jenny is the best non-native speaker i know, and i am not taking the piss!

You don't often see Jenny stuck for words but I have the pleasure to report that it has actually happened (at least once in my life time, although unfortunately it may never happen again- I live in hope!) During an amazing trip to Egypt which was choc full of adventure, misadventure , shisha and habibi this one episode stuck in my mind for the pure linguistic craziness of it all.

The Scene: Somewhere in a taxi in a desert

The players: China, myself and Roarie/Ruairi (pronounced 'rory', a nice ''Irish country boy'')

The Background: We had the great fortune of meeting a friend of a friend as we boarded the train to Luxor (the afore mentioned Ruairi), ''yes!'' we thought, a male companion, that should make our life in Egypt easier (this would be the only context in which i would ever think being in the company of a male would make life easier). As we were speeding through the desert we begin to pump Ruairi for information about Dahab , the legendary back-packer heaven which was to be the next and final stop on our crazy tour (N.B I didn't get to swan off to Kenya afterwards). Ruairi was expounding the virtues of Dahab whilst sitting in the front seat of the taxi but as he began to talk about Dahab and the night life I had a horrible feeling that I knew what he was going to say, and of course he did...

The Words: Exact quote - ''go to Dahab, the Crack there's great''. To anyone familiar with Irish Gaelic ''the crack'', spelt 'craic' will simply mean 'fun' or as Wikipedia puts it:

'fun, enjoyment, abandonment, or lighthearted mischief, sometimes in the context of drinking' And (I s***t you not) the comment that all drug dealers have been waiting for: 'Crack is good for your health in Ireland'.

As Ruairi recommended the crack/craic in Dahab I turned to Jenny as she tried to compute the fact that this guy, who we were stuck with in the desert, was in all likelyhood a crack fiend; the look on her face was priceless and I have a new found respect for Gaelic and the mass confusion it can cause when China, England and Ireland meet in Egypt...habibi to that!

Friday, March 02, 2007

About a boy

1 month before the trip –

C: Yo, Jenski, so I’m assuming our accommodation in Cairo is secured?
J: Yep, Alex hooked me up with his friend Kent in Cairo and we’ve been emailing each other. Sounds like a cool guy.

2 weeks before the trip –

C: Just checking, who are we staying with in Cairo again? Alex, right?
J: No, Kent. He’s Alex’s friend, but his name is Kent.
C: OK.

1 week before the trip –

C: So do you already have Clark’s address?
J: WTF is Clark?
C: Oh, sorry, Kent, I just keep thinking of Superman every time you mention Kent.

The day of taking off, on the plane –

C: Just to make sure, remind me what’s his name again?
J: Kent. Kent. Kent!!!
C: Make sure I get it right when we see him. For some reason I think it’ll be my lifetime problem to remember his name but I don’t want to screw our free accommodation.

Within AIESEC and its extended network I know quite a few people would be happy to host friend’s friends who even though you’ve never met before but at least you know you are somehow connected with. But –
- how many would be willing to pick up those strangers at 3AM from the airport?
- how many would give away your warm blanket at cold night in Egypt to guests coming from the Czech winter?
- how many would bother walk two clueless foreigners all the way to the railway station to hassle the ticket lady for deals he himself has never done before?
- how many would take the risk of bringing two hungry girls dying for good food to an American Soul Food night without assessing their devouring and party-wrecking-with-alcohol ability?

And above all these,

- how many would offer 3 camels instead of 2 for Claire?!

Thanks so much for everything, Kent. You are a champ. As we agreed, Prague has been determined. Inshaallah.
Kent
(Just in case you were wondering, the bottle at the bottom of this photo is Becherovka and in the plastic bottle is some quality Absinth, both from the Czech Republic. So I'm compliant with the picture posting rule. Yay)

Thursday, March 01, 2007

A Christmas to Remember


Is there a better gift for a Pivo terrorist than 17, count them (2 not present for photoshoot...possibly in stomach), 17 bottles of the finest German and Czech beer. In the coming weeks, I will be reviewing each bottle as it went down, so stay tuned.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Pasteurization

To celebrate Al's name day we had a small gathering yesterday in the bar down the street of my house. As always, all the conversations started, involved, and ended with beer talks. During the beer taste and quality part of the discussion Neil provided a precious piece of information, that Bernard is right now the only non-pasteurized beer in the market. The topic started with Neil and Richie openly expressing their dislike of Bernard beer because of its weird taste and, especially, Neil's tummy problem after 4 Bernard beers from experience.

Very interesting. Being the most famous family owned Czech brewery Bernard has maintained it's brewing technique of producing traditional unpasteurized beer and argued that pasteurization process changes beer taste and color. I don't mind Bernard but I don't know if pasteurization really matters that much in terms of taste. Dairy product pasteurization is a different story but beer, hmmm...

On a related note, there's already scientific study that found out drinkers can't judge a beer by its taste. Instead, knowing what's in a beer or who made it can affect your rating during beer tasting. As I always say, it's all psychological.

Actually, Habibi

It all started with my love for shisha, a passion that not so many people understand, and when my determination of purchasing a shisha turned into the unstoppable motivation to raid the country of shisha, it was just frikking unstoppable.

Claire happened to have 5 weeks off from work and didn't mind being dragged around by me. Even better she wanted to become a worthy Brit more cultured than drinking her body weight in tea, abusing cheap Czech beer and eating fish and chips, (we actually waited till the last minute to buy the tickets just to double-confirm on this point). So after her first-ever embassy visit she finally got her first visa in her passport. We are good to go.

After boarding on the plane, Claire was re-arranging her bag and I found a big-ass book while peeping into her personal effects.
"That's a big-ass organizer! WTF do you even need that for? You? Planning?"
"Check this out."
So this is the itinerary I worked out for the trip, and the following is the only thing she wrote in her organizer:

Page 1: 9th, Feb Egypt ->
Page 3: 18th , Feb -> Prague

Sweet as. We will be the best travel partners ever and both look forward to the trip. Excited.

I'm sure Claire will have a lot to tell about the trip and is a better story teller than I am. Therefore I'll leave it to her to decide what to share. Before she starts though, I'd like to introduce you two new friends: Stella Local and Luxor. Both are Eygptian local beers and they aren't shabby at all. I was actually very impressed with Egyptian pivo (that's right, they brew beer in Egypt!) I liked Stella so much that I wanted to own a Stella glass for my beer mug collection. We didn't find any until in a restaurant in Hurghada they served my beer in a Stella labeled glass. We were going to leave the place with it in our "traditional" way but my conscience struck me at the crucial moment and on a second thought I decided that stealing from Africa is bad. So I called the waiter over and asked if we could buy the glass from them. I was then kindly informed that they had only 5-10 glasses in the bar. So, sadly, no. Oh well, at least I tried, and the image can be forever...
Me, shisha, and Stella Local
Luxor
Claire & Raoiri - Luxor
[Full Album, aka Jenski's version of the story]