From the HBD Archive
From: dsbaer@EBay.Sun.COM (David Baer)
Subject: The beer continuum
Date: 1989-04-11 15:17:17 GMT

Gary Benson asks the insightful question:

>>What exactly is ale, beer, malt liquor, porter, bitter, stout?
What qualities do [stouts share] that their makers can...put "stout"
on the label? Are pilsner and lager similar -- both are light-colored,
right? And Lager is aged, but is that it? How about Bock and dupplebock? <<

In very brief, each of these styles of beers has a starting gravity,
specific ingredient, or certain type of yeast that allows each
to be classified with other beers. The problem lies when styles of
beer are very similar: ie Porter and Stout. There the line of
distinction blurs and the words often become interchangeable.

Michael Jackson has a book "The Simon and Schuester Pocket Guide
to Beer" that will give alot of details about what the differences
are between different beer styles.


>>I understand that bock is the season's dregs,<<

I have a different understanding of bock. Without my pocket
guide I don't have an exact definition, but I think bock beers
are usually brewed in the fall for consumption in the spring,
they have relatively high starting gravities: ie 1055-1065(dopplebocks
are 1070-1080) and are called bock beer because the original bock
was brewed in Einbeck, Germany. The reason many bock beers have a goat
as their mascot is "bock" is goat in German. I don't speak German and
can't verify my last statement at this moment, but I think its true.

Welcome aboard, Gary,

Dave Baer
(Sun Microsystems, Inc. in lovely Milpitas,CA)

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