Saturday, May 20, 2006

Beer? Nein! Paint Thinner? Ja!

From the Times(UK):

IT IS brown-gold and alcoholic but, then, in the scathing verdict of German beer fans, so is paint thinner.

The Germans are furious that Budweiser will be the official tipple for the World Cup, which starts next month. The American lager has secured a near-monopoly of beer sales inside World Cup stadiums and within a 500m radius of the grounds, supplanting more than 1,270 domestic breweries.

And what most upsets the fans is that Budweiser - advertised as the "King of Beers" in the US - fails to meet the ancient German standards for purity, which stipulate that beer can be brewed only from malt, hops and water. Budweiser uses rice in its production process and therefore does not qualify as a beer in the German sense.

Budweiser's World Cup status is a slap in the face for a country that attaches such importance to beer production. When Germany was a patchwork of principalities and duchies, a sponsored brewery was seen as the stamp of independence. German pride at hosting the tournament is being dented by the fierce marketing of the American beer.

Go read the rest. If I was a German, I'd be pissed-off too. I've always thought most mass-produced American beer could be improved by runnin' it through the horse one more time.

This could mean war!

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