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Brewing has a very long history, and archeological evidence tells us that this technique was used in ancient Egypt. Descriptions of various beer recipes can be found in Sumerian writings, some of the oldest known writing of any sort.

ALE (top-fermenting yeasts)

Ale yeasts ferment at warmer temperatures between 15-20°C (60-68°F), and occasionally as high as 24°C (75°F). Pure ale yeasts form a foam on the surface of the fermenting beer, because of this they are often referred to as Top-Fermenting yeast – though there are some British ale yeast strains that settle at the bottom. Ales are generally ready to drink within three weeks after the beginning of fermentation, however, some styles benefit from additional aging for several months or years. Ales range in color from very pale to black opaque. England is best known for its variety of Ales.

LAGER (bottom-fermenting yeasts)

While the nature of yeast was not fully understood until Emil Hansen of the Carlsberg brewery in Denmark isolated a single yeast cell in the 1800s, brewers in Bavaria had for centuries been selecting these cold-fermenting lager yeasts by storing or “Lagern” their beers in cold alpine caves. The process of natural selection meant that the wild yeasts that were most cold tolerant would be the ones that would remain actively fermenting in the beer that was stored in the caves. Some of these Bavarian yeasts were stolen and brought back to the Carlsberg brewery around the time that Hansen did his famous work.

Lager yeast tends to collect at the bottom of the fermenter and is often referred to as bottom-fermenting yeast. Lager is fermented at much lower temperatures, around 10°C (50°F), compared to typical ale fermentation temperatures of 18°C (65°F). It is then stored for 30 days or longer close to the freezing point. During the storing or lagering process, the beer mellows and flavours become smoother. Sulfur components developed during fermentation dissipate. The popularity of lager was a major factor that led to the rapid introduction of refrigeration in the early 1900s.

Today, lagers represent the vast majority of beers produced, the most famous being a light lager called Pilsner which originated in Pilsen, Czech Republic (Plzeň in czech language). It is a common misconception that all lagers are light in color: lagers can range from very light to deep black, just like ales.

BEERS OF SPONTANEOUS FERMENTATION (wild yeasts)

These beers are nowadays primarily only brewed around Brussels, Belgium. They are fermented by means of wild yeast strains that live in a part of the Zenne river which flows through Brussels. These beers are also called Lambic beers. However with the advent of yeast banks and the NCYC, brewing these beers, although not through spontaneous fermentation, is possible anywhere.

BEERS OF MIXED ORIGIN

These beers are blends of spontaneous fermentation beers and ales or lagers or they are ales/lagers which are also fermented by wild yeasts.

courtesy, the Wikipedia

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Blue Cheese Crusted Filet Mignon with Port Wine SauceBlue Cheese Crusted Filet Mignon with Port Wine Sauce





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