Author Topic: 10 Things You Might Not Know About the Reinheitsgebot Beer Purity Law of 1516  (Read 272 times)

Offline daniel_cerveza

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With the 500th anniversary of the worlds most famous beer law coming this April, here's a quick primer.

http://www.beersyndicate.com/blog/10-things-you-might-not-know-about-the-reinheitsgebot-beer-purity-law-of-1516/

A lot of you guys probably know a lot of this stuff, but I'd say I only knew about 30% of it.

Offline macbrews

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Thanks for sharing.


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Offline HoosierBrew

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Cool, thanks for posting.
Jon H.

Offline majorvices

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Cool article, I didn't know very many of them either!

Offline hopfenundmalz

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There was ample research behind this. Some small twist I didn't know.

One thing that I disagree with is the mention of sugars in bottom fermented beers. Those are allowed in top fermented beers. I think he had an editing problem, got top and bottom mixed up.

My source is Ron Pattinson. See the first and second paragraphs in the current beer tax law.

"The German Reinheitsgebot - why it's a load of old bollocks"

http://www.europeanbeerguide.net/reinheit.htm
Jeff Rankert
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Home-brewing, not just a hobby, it is a lifestyle!

Offline daniel_cerveza

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It looks like both you and Ron Pattinson are correct about the additional sugars being allowed in top-fermented beer, not bottom-fermented beer.

Here's the link to the actual document Ron is referring to in his piece that you linked (the text is from The Provisional Beer Act of 1993):

https://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=de&u=http://faolex.fao.org/docs/texts/ger98843.doc&prev=search

But the original text from 1906 basically states the same thing here:

https://de.wikisource.org/wiki/Bekanntmachung,_betreffend_die_Fassung_des_Brausteuergesetzes

(original German)

Unfortunately, it seems that Horst Dornbush and Karl-Ullrich Heyse's entry in The Oxford Companion to Beer (pp. 692-693) is incorrect.  Here's what they wrote: "The German version [of the Reinheitsgebot], on the other hand, is slightly more lenient when it comes to bottom-fermented beers.  These may also be made with the addition of "technically pure cane sugar, beet sugar, invert sugar, and modified starch sugar, as well as coloring agents made from these sugars.""
« Last Edit: February 01, 2016, 06:29:13 PM by daniel_cerveza »

Offline hopfenundmalz

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It looks like both you and Ron Pattinson are correct about the additional sugars being allowed in top-fermented beer, not bottom-fermented beer.

Here's the link to the actual document Ron is referring to in his piece that you linked (the text is from The Provisional Beer Act of 1993):

https://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=de&u=http://faolex.fao.org/docs/texts/ger98843.doc&prev=search

But the original text from 1906 basically states the same thing here:

https://de.wikisource.org/wiki/Bekanntmachung,_betreffend_die_Fassung_des_Brausteuergesetzes

(original German)

Unfortunately, it seems that Horst Dornbush and Karl-Ullrich Heyse's entry in The Oxford Companion to Beer (pp. 692-693) is incorrect.  Here's what they wrote: "The German version [of the Reinheitsgebot], on the other hand, is slightly more lenient when it comes to bottom-fermented beers.  These may also be made with the addition of "technically pure cane sugar, beet sugar, invert sugar, and modified starch sugar, as well as coloring agents made from these sugars.""
Time to throw Horst under the Bus? Again?

If that was your article, I learned some things. I still liked it.

Edit - Pattinson is darned good on beer history. I will go by what he has to say on German beer. He travels through Germany often, and his wife is a German lady, so he has some command of the language.

Edit 2 - I know some German, travel fairly often, but am not as fluent as I would like to be.
« Last Edit: February 01, 2016, 07:02:42 PM by hopfenundmalz »
Jeff Rankert
Ann Arbor Brewers Guild, AHA Member, BJCP Certified
Home-brewing, not just a hobby, it is a lifestyle!