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Old 03-06-2009, 11:30 PM   #1
GilaMinumBeer
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Take the diacetyl rest for example.

Without doing any research I suspect that the realization of the effect of the diacetyl rest came about through some glorious mistake.

Maybe a cellar warmed up unexpectedly, or a shipment of ice came a week too late, or the pumps leaked their ammonia. And the brewer upon sampling his/her product realized that by some amazing circumstance his/her product became, better.

Have many or all of the advances in brewing technique come about this way?

 
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Old 03-07-2009, 01:26 AM   #2
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In its simplest form: I think the whole process of brewing is one big mistake that people throughout the ages have taken notes on and applied what worked and what didn't...

Here's to what worked...
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Old 03-07-2009, 04:11 AM   #3
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Old 03-07-2009, 04:14 AM   #4
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I'm pretty sure folks drank this sweet crap called "barley water" as a beverage until one day someone accidentally dropped a loaf of moldy bread into the mix...they sat it aside to clean up later and lo and behold...moldy barley hootch was born.

They probably changed the name shortly thereafter though.

 
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Old 03-07-2009, 02:08 PM   #5
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I'm just amazed people 100's of years ago, when they believed in fairys rather than bacteria, could brew uninfected beer. And yet we can't imagine the thought of going without starsan for a single batch.

 
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Old 03-07-2009, 03:11 PM   #6
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I suspect there are three major inputs to beer's history: Accidents, where someone was paying attention (this is important); Random experimentation based on whatever is available; and deliberate experimentation under tightly controlled conditions.

Most likely, the first beer was leftover grain porridge gone bad.
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