Fun Facts

Alcohol Trivia & Musings

  • The strongest beer in the world comes from a German brewer named Georg Tscheuschner. He claims his Schorschbrau Schorsch Bock 43 is 43% ABV which is stronger than most distilled spirits. It sells for over 100 Euros per bottle and it most likely is also the most disgusting tasting beer on the planet.
  • Common distillation cannot exceed 191.2 proof because at that point ethanol is an azeotrope with water. Alcohols of this purity are commonly referred to as grain alcohol and are not meant for human consumption, with the notable exception of neutral grain spirits.
  • Non-alcoholic beers average about 94 percent less alcohol and 58 percent fewer calories then regular beer.
  • Alcohol consumption causes inflammatory chemicals called Cytokins to be overproduced by our bodies. This results in memory loss, loss of focus, and sometimes pain in the head.
  • The alcohol content of a standard drink of beer, dinner wine, or distilled spirits (either straight or in a mixed drink) are equivalent. Don’t think of yourself as a “light weight” if you are sipping wine or some fruity drink while others are chugging beer and doing shots. (Disclaimer – this is not true if you are watching football however)
  • Consumption of beer in the United States is about 33 gallons per person per year based on persons over the drinking age of 21 years old.
  • Most yeasts cannot grow when the concentration of alcohol is higher than about 18% by volume, so that is a practical limit for the strength of fermented beverages such as wine, beer, and sake.
  • Strains of yeast have been developed that can survive in solutions of up to 25% alcohol by volume, but these were bred for ethanol fuel production, not beverage production.
  • Fortified wines are produced by adding brandy or other distilled spirits to achieve higher ABV than is easily reached using fermentation alone.
  • The Top 3 countries in the World in per capita beer consumption are the Czech Republic, Germany, and Ireland.
  • The Top 3 countries in the world with the highest tax rates on beer are Norway, Finland, and Canada.
  • Alcohol has been widely consumed since prehistoric times by people around the world.
  • Gin was invented in Holland in 1650 about the same time European settlers in the West Indies began distilling sugar cane into Rum.
  • Sir Winston Churchill was a total booze hound. He would start each day with a whiskey before moving on to brandy and martinis later in the afternoon and evening.
  • The legal drinking age varies by country. In most of Europe it is 16, Canada 18, most of Asia 20, and in the US it is 21.
  • Distilled alcohol beverages 1st appeared 12th century Europe among alchemists who were more interested in medical “elixirs” than making gold from lead.
  • Spirits may be served in a variety of ways, some of which include
    • On the rocks — spirits are to be served and drunk over ice.
    • Straight up — the spirit is to be shaken or stirred with ice, but drunk by itself, with the ice filtered out.
    • Neat — the spirit is served and consumed by itself, with nothing added.
    • With a simple mixer such as tonic water, cola, etc.
    • With water
  • The average alcohol content of wine sold in the United States fell from 16.75 percent in 1950 to 10.49 percent in 1991 before rebounding slightly to 11.45 in 2002.
  • The alcohol content in beer followed a similar pattern, falling from 5.02 percent in 1950 to 4.58 percent in 1993 and rising again to 4.65 percent in 2002.
  • The District of Columbia had the highest average alcohol content of liquor sold, at 38.3 percent. Ohio had the lowest average alcohol content, at 34.8 percent. In both states, the 2002 alcohol levels were about 4 percent to 5 percent lower than 1950 levels.
  • A popular drink in Cambodia is a Tarantula Brandy. You guessed it – the concoction includes rice liquor and freshly dead tarantulas.
  • An even grosser drink than the Tarantula Brandy is the Baby Mouse Liquor found in rural Korea. This distilled rice spirit or filled with baby mice carcasses and fermented for 1 year.
  • Overconsumption of alcohol causes scarring of the liver which must work overtime to produce enough of the enzymes that break down the ethanol in booze.