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Origins of Lager Found In Argentina 77

Posted by samzenpus
from the a-yeast-of-a-different-color dept.
utkonos writes "After decades of pondering, scientists have found the secret to the creation of lager. An elusive species of yeast isolated in the forests of Argentina was key to the invention of the crisp-tasting German beer. From the article: 'Their best bet is that centuries ago, S. eubayanus somehow found its way to Europe and hybridized with the domestic yeast used to brew ale, creating an organism that can ferment at the lower temperatures used to make lager. Geneticists have known since the 1980s that the yeast brewers use to make lager, S. pastorianus, was a hybrid of two yeast species: S. cerevisiae — used to make ales, wine and bread — and some other, unidentified organism.'"
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Origins of Lager Found In Argentina

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  • by elrous0 (869638) * on Tuesday August 23, 2011 @12:47PM (#37181240)

    Their best bet is that centuries ago, S. eubayanus somehow found its way to Europe

    How do they know it wasn't the other way around? Maybe we Europeans brought it as a gift to our New World brothers.

    • I don't think anyone would appreciate a european gift of special brew [drinksdirect.co.uk].
      Q.E.D. It was the other way around.
    • by trout007 (975317)

      Lots of Nazi's left Germany for Argentina after WWII.

    • by FauxReal (653820)

      Their best bet is that centuries ago, S. eubayanus somehow found its way to Europe

      How do they know it wasn't the other way around? Maybe we Europeans brought it as a gift to our New World brothers.

      You're probably right, I bet it was time traveling Nazis on a quest to hide their ill gotten gold.

    • by Abstrackt (609015)

      How do they know it wasn't the other way around?

      The instructions on the packet were in Spanish.

    • by XiaoMing (1574363)

      How do they know it wasn't the other way around? Maybe we Europeans brought it as a gift to our New World brothers.

      Later, a more effective microbe known as "smallpox" was used, with much better intended results ;)

    • by lahvak (69490)

      It seems that that particular species of yeast does not appear in Europe. Only its hybrids do. So while it is possible that the yeast first traveled to Argentina, and then became extinct in Europe, it seems more likely that it originated at the place where it still can be found.

  • Geneticists have known since the 1980s that the yeast brewers use to make lager, S. pastorianus, was a hybrid of two yeast species: S. cerevisiae â" used to make ales, wine and bread â" and some other, unidentified organism.'"

    - Chuck Norris is not just some unidentified organism, he alone brings the fine essence of power to wines and ales.

    • by dkleinsc (563838)

      No, the real story here is that Bruce Schneier went back in time and encoded the secrets to human happiness on this obscure species genetic code using advanced steganography. The effects of beer are proof of his contribution.

      • Considering how I always feel much smarter than Bruce when I had enough beer, I guess you might be right.

    • by Dyinobal (1427207)
      The year 2000 called it would like it's meme back.
      • by Canazza (1428553)

        Did you warn them about 9/11?

        March called me and wanted it's comic back too. Told them that Piers Morgan was going to be on the Apprentice, they didn't believe me... Fools!

      • by operagost (62405)
        1998 called. It would like its meme about wanting memes back, back.
  • by wisebabo (638845) on Tuesday August 23, 2011 @12:55PM (#37181370) Journal

    Maybe if the average beer drinker knew that his brew was made possible by a rare yeast found in an obscure gall plant found in Patagonia he'd be more supportive of conservation efforts!

    Then again he'd probably just change the channel from the Discovery channel to ESPN.

    • by stms (1132653)

      As a Beer drinker myself I resent the fact that you think we don't appreciate biodiversity. Beer has been helping people increase the biodiversity of their offspring for centuries. It's come close to helping me increase mine at least a couple times.

    • by jd (1658)

      BBC Article [bbc.co.uk]

      Having said that, the 45 million year old yeast [wired.com] was a much more interesting discovery (Wired's article includes info on how to extract it from amber) but it hasn't really spawned much of an interest in paleantology. Damn shame.

  • where the lager beer was invented in the brewery of Anton Dreher.
    • by vlm (69642)

      where the lager beer was invented in the brewery of Anton Dreher.

      Vikings. I'm only half way joking.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      where the lager beer was invented in the brewery of Anton Dreher.

      No, actually Anton Dreher invented the PALE lager in 1840, "he introduced a beer that combined the crispness of lager with the paler hues of the English ale; this new style of beer became known as the Viennese style, and was called the Schwechater Lagerbier ("Schwechat Lager Beer")."

      LAGER was invented/discovered waaaaay earlier, "While cold storage of beer, "lagering," in caves for example, was a common practice throughout the medieval period,

      • by cptdondo (59460)

        U Fleku in the Czech Republic has been making the same "dark lager" in the same place for something like 500 years in Prague. So yes, lager does predate the 1800s by quite a bit.

        I'm not sure when the first lager was brewed, but given the timeline someone (Vikings?) must have brought back the yeast. Good thing they didn't wash really well, eh?

        • by frisket (149522)

          > I'm not sure when the first lager was brewed

          Clearly before 1487, when the idea of a beer purity law was first mooted (according to Mr Wikipedia at Reinheitsgebot [wikipedia.org]). So if it genuinely originated in S. America, someone must have brought it over (or back).

          --

          If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it had bloody well better be a duck, or there'll be trouble.

  • I hate when yeast are being all elusive making scientists search for decades like that.
  • Now we see that the "special relationship" between Argentina and Germany has been established for quite a bit longer than we thought.
    • by Ranger (1783)
      Yup. At least this is a good one. First it was Nazis, then it was the most complete copy of Metropolis found and now lager yeast.
  • Plenty of nazis in Argentina. No wonder they make lagers there, too. Beer macht frei.
  • "June-Fest!"

    I like chimichury flank steak better then sourkrout anyway.

  • Ales & stouts for life! The harder it is to see through, the better it is!

    • Re:They can keep it! (Score:5, Informative)

      by businessnerd (1009815) on Tuesday August 23, 2011 @02:01PM (#37182514)
      Ale vs Lager only refers to the type of yeast and the temperature at which it was fermented. It has nothing to do with the color/opacity. While most ales the typical beer drinker encounters are darker than lagers, there are plenty of examples of lager styles that are very dark (e.g. doppelbock). Also, color does not always tell you how much flavor the beer has. It is just an indicator of which flavors you are likely to have more of, and even then, there are ways of making a really dark, yet relatively flavorless beer. For example, a beer that used a lot of "black patent malt" but is otherwise light on barley malt and hops would be as black as a Guinness but as flavorful as a Keystone Light.
      • Negra Modelo from Mexico should be easy enough to locate in a grocery store near you for the curious.
    • by suy (1908306)

      Ales & stouts for life! The harder it is to see through, the better it is!

      You never enjoyed a Pale Ale, do you? Is an ale, and... well, is as pale as the average lager.

  • Everyone knows that the unknown element in beer yeast is the higs boson otherwise known as the god particle. God really screwed up when he designed the world, the reproductive systems (who puts the entertainment center next to the sewage works) and women. He gave us beer to make up for it. And it does.

    • by CFTM (513264)

      And on that note....

      Three engineering students were gathered together discussing the possible designers of the human body.
      One said, ``It was a mechanical engineer. Just look at all the joints.''
      Another said, ``No, it was an electrical engineer. The nervous systems many thousands of electrical connections.''
      The last said, ``Actually it was a civil engineer. Who else would run a toxic waste pipeline through a recreational area?''

    • by operagost (62405)
      Until the beer gives you explosive diarrhea right before you're about to score.
  • It's only a matter of time now before Dogfish Head releases something fermented with this yeast. I vote for Legacy Lager as a name.
  • This is sort of similar to the question from a post yesterday about Earth ejecta finding its way to the rest of the Solar System and seeding life. If we discover life on Mars, how do we know where the source is from?

    Also, how do we know there wasn't a common ancestor?

  • If this is true, this serves to conclusively prove that Native Americans traded freely with the "New World" for quite some time.
  • "You're a wizard, Harry!"

The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not "Eureka!" (I found it!) but "That's funny ..." -- Isaac Asimov

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