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CHRISTMAS is one of the best sites offering info on various aspects of beer in Germany.
The Germans are known to the whole world as a true beer-loving nation. And there is no exaggeration here! 

Beer's history dates back to prehistoric ancient times when the Sumarians discovered the fermentation process (about 6000 years ago). Babylonians and Egyptians developed the art of brewing beer, and passed it to Romans who considered it to be a barbarian drink. The Teutons, the ancient Germans, regarded beer as a sacrifice to the gods. They started producing the first proof beer in the early Hallstatt Period (about 800 B.C.). In the Middle Ages beer brewing turned into a favorite occupation of monks who served it with their meals. 

The art of brewing beer owes much to monasteries where it was developed scientifically. Then began the flavoring of beer, first in Brabant monasteries, which gave the Brabant king, Gambrinus, the title of patron saint of beer. Besides its outstanding peculiar taste, beer is also highly estimated as an economic factor.

Germany is the country where beer is greatly praised and served everywhere. So prost! Raise your Beer Stein! Enjoy a great German beer! Want to advertise on this page? Click here.

Society fights for accurate beer pours as "Starkbierzeit" winds down


Anyone who has been to a beer garden in Germany knows that the people who idle there for hours take the accuracy of their pours seriously. But that thick line on the mug meant to standardize the amount of beer a patron gets hasn't made the "Society Against Dishonest Pouring" any less popular — or necessary.

"Badly poured beers are among the largest problems in beer gardens, restaurants, and at the Oktoberfest," the society notes on its website.

The accuracy of German engineering spills over into the beer world. dpa photo
The SADP estimates that beer maids who pour just a finger's width less of beer cheat patrons out of 4.2 million Eur worth of beer at Munich's annual Oktoberfest alone.

But the group isn't just looking out for beer drinkers at the world's largest beer festival. At any single beer event in Bavaria, the society has as many as 20 pouring experts making the rounds to assure drinkers of nothing less than a perfect pour.

With 4,000 members, the group includes major beer brewers as well as Munich Mayor Christian Ude and Bavarian governor Edmund Stoiber. It was initiated in 1899 to assure beer drinkers the right amount of drink for their money, but its current incarnation was created in 1970.

The society has also launched a campaign against the steadily rising price of beer and a now defunct EU plan to harmonize beer taxes across the 25-member bloc, calling the brew a "diet staple" that is excluded from unwarranted price hikes.

"If these price increases go through, there will be an uproar," said Jan-Ulrich Bittlinger, a Society Against Dishonest Pouring representative.

Members also gather every first and third Tuesday in the Munich's most famous center-city beer hall, the Hofbraeuhaus.

Starkbierfest winding down

Members from the Munich-based organization have been on call in recent weeks as festivals throughout Bavaria celebrate "Starkbierzeit," or "strong beer time." The last two weeks of March and the end of Lent finds swillers in beer gardens and cellar bars delighting in Bock beer that has alcohol content of 7.6%.

Originally brewed during the end of Lent by Bavarian monks in the 17th century, "Starkbier" is now celebrated by nearly all of Munich's major breweries in a festival kicked off by keg-tapping ceremonies.

The barely-publicized two week event, centered around the Paulaner brewery, is a much-loved local tradition and the end to what Bavarians call the "fifth season." It may be slower-paced and less touristy than the Oktoberfest, but that doesn't make the beer maids working there any more intent on a perfect pour, society members say.

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turn. Der Hanftrunk

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Beer Steins

Great descriptions of Beer in and Beer gardens in Bavaria.
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KBS Beer Bottle Collection
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Beer School
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Oktoberfest History
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United Sites of Amstel
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