Brewers in Ancient Civilization knew not only how to make beer, but they knew multiple recipes to produce beer, including fresh, old, red, dark, pressed, strong, weak, and honey flavored brews. What is striking about this diversity is that, over 5,000 years ago, humanity had a greater choice of beers to drink than Americans did in 1950. Homogenization and market consolidation are two practices that run counter to the historic trend of brewing in humanity. But where the history of beer is long and diverse, American drinkers have a short term memory. If beer is to be considered a text, for much of our recent history, we forgot the language. Or at the very least, knew few words of the language.
Eric Ortega, “The Golden State of Brewing; California’s Economic and Cultural Influence in the American Brewing Industry” (Master’s thesis, California State University, Fullerton, 2015), 2.