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Coming to an Ice Cream Shop Near You: Soft Serve Beer 157

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the icy-and-not-particularly-delicious dept.
Cazekiel writes "Sticking a mug in your freezer to ensure a cold beer may be made obsolete, if the Japanese brewing giant Kirin has anything to do about it. How? Kirin came up with a way to create frozen beer foam, dispensed the way you would a soft-serve ice cream cone. Gizmag gives us the details: 'To make the topping, regular Ichiban beer is frozen to -5 degrees Celsius (23 degrees Fahrenheit) while air is continuously blown into it. It's kind of like when a child makes bubbles in their drink, except inside a blast freezer. Once the topping is placed onto regular, unfrozen beer though, it acts as an insulating lid and keeps the drink cold for 30 minutes.'" Might make flavorless rice lagers easier to go down, but what about real beer? A hefeweizen under an ice cap on a warm summer afternoon? How about an entire glass full of frozen chocolate stout?
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Coming to an Ice Cream Shop Near You: Soft Serve Beer

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  • Ice anyone? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by CoderExpert (2613949) on Wednesday April 11, 2012 @01:19PM (#39646253)
    Why they don't just put ice on the beer like every normal person in Thailand does?
    • by Ambvai (1106941)

      That waters it down?

    • by DC2088 (2343764)
      Why would you ruin your beer with frozen *water*?
      • Hmmm.

        New product. Beer Ice, to keep your beer cold.

        *Ice cube containers not included.

        • They would be like whiskey rocks, I assume. They're rocks (or sometimes metal cubes) that you freeze and drop into drinks you don't want diluted.

          • No, actual beer. Frozen. In ice cube form.

            • by SomePgmr (2021234)

              I'm not sure adding previously frozen beer to your beer is better than a little water, which is most of what every beer is to begin with.

              Maybe worth a shot though.

          • They would be like whiskey rocks, I assume. They're rocks (or sometimes metal cubes) that you freeze and drop into drinks you don't want diluted.

            Whiskey isn't carbonated, so this would likely result in an explosion of foam. If the metal ones were smooth enough it might not, but that also might hamper their effectiveness. Also, the stone ones (like the ones I have) are usually a soft stone like soapstone, that wont damage the glass when dropped in. I guess the metal ones would have rounded edges.

            But the real answer is for people to step up from pisswater beers that don't need to be right at freezing to be drinkable. :)

        • by DC2088 (2343764)
          Isn't that what the soft serve beer is, precisely? Beer foam ice?
      • by osu-neko (2604) on Wednesday April 11, 2012 @02:13PM (#39647143)
        Assuming it's American commercial beer, the additional water content from melting ice is statistically insignificant.
        • I found Sam Adams Beer quite enjoyable.

          Or are you talking about the big name. Coors, Bushe and Budwiser.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by flibbidyfloo (451053)

      I assume it's because they are not savages

    • Why not just stick the bottle in the freezer for a bit - you know you've timed it just right when you open it and the release in pressure causes the beer in the neck to turn into slush.
    • by hawk (1151)

      We're still trying to figure out why anyone would put ice in good whiskey, and now you suggest doing it to beer, to?

      Argh

      hawk

      • A drop or two of ice-cold water will open of the flavor of good whiskey. Ice cubes are just taking it to the next level.

      • by dwye (1127395)

        You said "good" whiskey. Ice goes in crap whiskeys. No one orders a Laphroag on the rocks except to get a rise out of someone else.

  • Must get to Quikee Mart....
  • I seem to only drink Kirin at sushi restaurants so I don't expect to rushing out for it. However, if this was available for my favorite beer [dogfish.com] then I might give it a try.
    • by Silfax (1246468)

      I seem to only drink Kirin at sushi restaurants so I don't expect to rushing out for it. However, if this was available for my favorite beer [dogfish.com] then I might give it a try.

      While I like the 90 minute IPA, I think that the 120 minute IPA [dogfish.com] might make a better beer slushie (if you could get it to freeze smoothly).

      • by gatkinso (15975)

        At about $10 for a 12 OZ bottle, you would be a fool to freeze your 120 minute.

        I love Dogfish, but that this just a bit ridiculous.

        As an avid homebrewer, I have a 120 minute clone that is about to go into secondary (I used some of my wife's home grown hops!) I suspect it will be much better.

        • Where do I send the self-addressed stamped shipping container?
        • by Altus (1034)

          Please post a recipe. I would love to give something like that a shot. If nothing else it will make good research for other crazy IPAs that I want to make.

          • by gatkinso (15975)

            I used the one on Homebrew Chef (halved the recipe... what would I do with 10 gallons of 120m other than eventually get arrested?), substituted my wife's hops for the Amarillo.... also I own the cheapest oxygenation kit I could find.

            www.homebrewchef.com/120minuteIPArecipe.html

            I think it is going to be awesome. Warning this recipe is a commitment, and by far the most advanced I have yet attempted. There are some nice (and easier!) 90 minute clones out there as well. Also over at Hopville there is a nice a

      • I seem to only drink Kirin at sushi restaurants so I don't expect to rushing out for it. However, if this was available for my favorite beer [dogfish.com] then I might give it a try.

        While I like the 90 minute IPA, I think that the 120 minute IPA [dogfish.com] might make a better beer slushie (if you could get it to freeze smoothly).

        And completely crush the flavor of the beer in the process. If you don't like hops, why pay 12 dollars a bottle for this beer.

        Some craft brewers are printing a recommended serving temperature, which I think is a great idea.

  • Real beer? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by slyrat (1143997) on Wednesday April 11, 2012 @01:27PM (#39646411)
    I would consider Kirin to be real beer. They do also make a Happoshu [wikipedia.org] but the actual beer they make isn't bad. Beer is a very diverse drink and there are many kinds and types. I wouldn't ever consider one type to be more 'real' than others. Regardless it would still be interesting to try this technique for frozen beer foam on all of the different types of beers.
    • by hal2814 (725639) on Wednesday April 11, 2012 @01:39PM (#39646605)
      First they came for the American lager
      And I didn't speak out because I don't like Bud Light
      Then they came for the mass-produced European lagers
      And I didn't speak out because I don't have the money to blow on fancy schmancy imports.
      Then they came for the stouts.
      And I didn't speak up. Do I look Irish to you?
      Then they came for the IPA's.
      And it was about damn time. I like hops but I don't like to rub them in my eyeballs while I'm drinking beer.
      But then they came for the Kolsch.
      And there was no one left to speak out for me.
      • by hawk (1151)

        Err, why would anyone defend your sissy northern European see-through lager???

        *sigh*

        And there are only two words for this foam process: "alcohol abuse."

        hawk

  • by CosaNostra Pizza Inc (1299163) on Wednesday April 11, 2012 @01:31PM (#39646489)
    Ben and Jerry's has an ice cream recipe book (probably still sells on Amazon), which includes among many other flavors, BEER SORBET *yum*.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 11, 2012 @01:33PM (#39646509)

    The only beer that merits consumption at anything close to "cold" are the thin, watery excuses produced by the Big 3 breweries in the USA (Larry, Moe and Curly, AKA Miller, Bud and Coors) Real beer needs to be chilled nicely but served in the 45-55 degree range for the flavors to be enjoyed.

    • by chispito (1870390)
      The worst offender, IMO, is Heineken. It goes from drinkable but grassy tasting at cold temps to downright skunky at cellar temperatures.
    • by dkleinsc (563838) on Wednesday April 11, 2012 @01:58PM (#39646927) Homepage

      I'm confused: When did Miller, Bud and Coors start selling beer? I thought their product was slightly alcoholic water.

    • But what about my Keystone while I'm playing beer pong? Shit could be frozen and it still wouldn't be cold enough to be palatable.
    • by Pausanias (681077)

      I'm sick of this high-temperature snobbery. The number of times I've heard people at bars go tut-tut at a bar because their favorite microbrew's been too cold? Give me a break. What you say may be true of a fine Bavarian Paulaner, but in the USA, most of the microbrews and not just Larry, Moe, and Curly need some serious cooling down due to a number of flavors that they' amateurishly been unable to suppress.

    • by slyrat (1143997)

      The only beer that merits consumption at anything close to "cold" are the thin, watery excuses produced by the Big 3 breweries in the USA (Larry, Moe and Curly, AKA Miller, Bud and Coors) Real beer needs to be chilled nicely but served in the 45-55 degree range for the flavors to be enjoyed.

      This is mostly true. There is actually a Guinness extra cold that is meant to be served cold. They even have special taps that serve it through a super cooler at 3.5C. So I would say that unless a beer is brewed to be enjoyed cold it probably is best served at the 45-55 range as stated.

    • by eltonito (910528)

      Big 3? More like "Big 1.5"

      Miller and Coors (as we think of it in the USA) merged in 2008, making them effectively one brewery in the USA. "Bud" isn't even a brewer, but a brand within AB-InBev, which is about as American as moules-frites. I suppose I'll give you half-credit for that one.

      That correction made, I will concur with the remainder of your post.

    • by gatkinso (15975)

      Clearly you have never been to Mexico. A place where the local climate is not an unending variation of cloudy with showers.

  • Guiness and Boddingtons would be the perfect beer for this. Something rich and thick. Forget the lagers.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      The suggested serving temperature for Guiness is 50 - 55 degrees Fahrenheit.

      • by gatkinso (15975)

        Well when I crossed to pond and visted the Guiness Storehouse (a vast marketing ploy, very little actual brewing) at the Sky Bar they served Guinees "Extra Cold" served at 33 degrees F (curious why they used F).

        So it would appear the Guiness doesn't always agree with you,

        • Guiness Extra Cold is not the same as the traditional Guiness Stout. I was just there in February and during my fun little "Pour your own Pint" Moment", storing the Stout at 38 degrees F and pouring at 44 degrees F was the recommendation.
    • by arth1 (260657)

      Guiness and Boddingtons would be the perfect beer for this. Something rich and thick. Forget the lagers.

      Last I had it, Boddington's was a lager, and by no means could be called rich and thick. Except for the odour, which is rich - it smells like a ripe urinal, but doesn't taste half bad as far as commercial beer goes.

      Anyhow, I think it's all around a bad idea. Just because you can do something doesn't mean you should. You can't buy mustard and pickle milk shake either, and that's not because people don't love mustard or pickles.

      • by squizzar (1031726)

        Boddingtons [wikipedia.org] is a bitter or pale ale. Used to drink tonnes of it when I were a nipper (because it was invariably cheaper than everything else).

    • by chispito (1870390)
      Dark ales tend to be better at cellar temperatures than ice cold.
      • by geekoid (135745)

        English cellar temperatures. Which, historically, would have been around 40 degrees. i.e. refridge temperatures.

    • by Loosifur (954968) on Wednesday April 11, 2012 @02:01PM (#39646979)

      "I didn't know gazpacho soup was meant to be served cold. I called over the chef and I told him to take it away and bring it back hot. He did! The looks on their faces still haunt me today! I thought they were laughing at the chef, when all the time they were laughing at me as I ate my piping hot gazpacho soup! I never ate at the captain's table again. That was the end of my career."

      • Oh my god! Quoting from the Worst! Book(s)! Ever! Written! Did you ever notice? Every other sentence in the whole! (poorly written!) book! is an exclamation!!
        • by Loosifur (954968)

          Wow, man, you just whiffed hard on that one. Google "Arnold Rimmer" and learn something.

          • It's also pretty much word-for-word from L. Ron Hubbard's Mission Earth.
            • by Loosifur (954968)

              Really? I'm not familiar with anything he's written, only with his whole Scientology thing. I wonder if Red Dwarf pulled the spoof of all spoofs...

              • by Svartalf (2997)

                Honestly, I'd not be wanting to own up to having read Hubbard's tripe SF...

                Odds on, he's full of it. Quick google search on things provides nothing but refrences to Wikipedia's entry on Goal-post Head and people quoting his line as quoted up the discussion thread...

      • by ajlitt (19055)

        I was looking for beer milkshakes, but this will have to do I guess.

    • These beers only have that thick mouth feel because they use nitrogen instead of good ol' CO2. I would guess that the process described above would remove most of either of those from the beer.
  • "Might make flavorless rice lagers easier to go down, but what about real beer?"

    You know, Japan does grow more than rice. Their beers actually use wheat/barley/hops...

    • Indeed. When I think "flavorless rice lager", I think Budweiser.
      • by Dahamma (304068)

        Don't kid yourself - Kirin is about 30% rice (since that's the maximum allowed to still be called "beer") and in fact if you have had one in the US it was made by Anheuser Busch anyway.

  • by XiaoMing (1574363) on Wednesday April 11, 2012 @01:43PM (#39646683)

    Might make flavorless rice lagers easier to go down, but what about real beer?

    Considering how this is a pretty neat idea that is not only a pretty big step beyond just ice-cubes made of beer both texturally (frozen foam), and thermodynamically, I'm not sure why the author felt it would be necessary to even remotely knock it in such a retarded manner when...

    Let's take a look at America's top 5 domestics shall we:
    1. Bud light
    2. Budweiser
    3. Miller Light
    4. Coors Light
    5. Corona Extra
    http://www.fiveoclockdallas.com/five-most-popular-beers-us [fiveoclockdallas.com]

    I'm not sure if OP has ever tried such a beer, but it's pretty flavorful compared to the 5 variants of piss I just listed. And considering how well the Japanese rice beers actually pair with sushi (which is probably where 99% of that exposure will occur in the states), I'd say it's pretty well suited to its purpose.

    Then again, it's also fair to say that the domestic Top5 is pretty well suited to their purpose, given that they all pair pretty well with ping-pong balls.

  • No it won't be coming to an ice cream shop near you because no one will eat it here in the US. Had a chance to try it a couple months ago and it's horrid. Even worse than the flavorless rice lagers that generally come out of that area of the world (and the flavorless ones from the US too).
  • Besides, as the ice melts, you have more beer.

  • by khr (708262) <kevinrubin@gmail.com> on Wednesday April 11, 2012 @01:50PM (#39646787) Homepage

    How about an entire glass full of frozen chocolate stout?

    That reminds me of the McMenamins pubs in Portland, Oregon that serve a milkshake with their Terminator stout in it. It's a delicious combination!

    • by Jeng (926980)

      The Alamo Drafthouse chain of cinemas, primarily in Texas, serve a Guinness Milkshake.

  • Beer Milkshakes are delicious. I use a nutty brown ale with a good vanilla ice cream.

    c'mon, try it. Dave Lister would not steer you wrong.

  • by nrozema (317031) on Wednesday April 11, 2012 @02:25PM (#39647357)

    ... "cold" is not a flavor.

    • ... "cold" is not a flavor.

      But their sister product, Miller Lite, has "more taste." What they don't tell you is that more crappy taste is not necessarily better than less crappy taste. The "more taste" marketing campaign never once said it had a BETTER taste than Bud Light, just that it had more. I've smelled some dog turds that probably have a ton of taste, but I'm not going to mess with those, either. I'll stick to Yuengling or Gennesee when I'm feeling poor, and keep sampling quality craft brews the rest of the time.

  • Against my horde of snobby homebrew buddies.

  • Exposing beer to the air will oxidize it and make it taste way worse. So what you will get is nasty frozen beer.

    What would be better is to come up with a complex process of removing the water and condensing it down into a beer flavored shot!

  • by shogarth (668598) on Wednesday April 11, 2012 @05:28PM (#39649875)

    This reminds me of a time we were in the field and our beer got unappetizingly warm. Due to the kind of work we were doing, we had plenty of liquid nitrogen but insufficient refrigerator space for our liquid refreshments. One evening a member of the team decided he wanted a very cold Guinness and so poured about 250 ml of liquid nitrogen into his glass of beer.

    Of course the nitrogen changed state but the surprise (to us anyway) was that the gas caused the beer to freeze sightly slower that it foamed. Within a few seconds, there was a meter or so of frozen beer foam standing up out of the glass. It was completely undrinkable (being in solid form), but wasn't bad if eaten with a spoon; which had to happen quickly as it started to melt immediately.

    Moral: Don't send a bunch of twenty-something researchers into the desert for weeks on end without proper cooling equipment.

  • by uvajed_ekil (914487) on Wednesday April 11, 2012 @11:47PM (#39653681)
    What this really is, is beer for people who don't like beer. I am a beer enthusiast (not quite a beer snob... yet), and I can tell you that the last thing real beer lovers want is ultra-cold, crapified beer. Don't we have enough beer for people who don't actually like beer? Like all American-style macrobrewed lagers (Bud, Bud Lite, Miller Lite, Coors, and most everything made by Anheuser or Miller-Coors), most Canadian beers (including most all of them exported to the US), Corona, most malt liquors, etc.

    Most cheap, common beers are pretty crappy examples of their respective styles. They are generally watery, taste more of adjuncts than hops or barley malt, 4.2%-5.9% alcohol, piss yellow, over carbonated, and meant to be served so cold as to mask what little flavor there is. I'll pass on this frozen beer BS, though I bet plenty of idiots who swear by Bud Light will be all over it.

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