Archive for the ‘Alcohol Sales’ Category
Source: Daily Mail
By VINCENT GRAFF
There’s a lethal weapon in my hand. It might look to you like a bottle of beer. But this one could knock you dead.
Called ‘Armageddon’ – the name is no accident – it is the strongest beer in the world. At 65 per cent alcohol, it’s stronger than whisky or brandy and 16 times more potent than a standard pub lager. This 330ml bottle contains 22 units of alcohol – the equivalent of ten pints of Carlsberg.
And, like that other famous novelty, the deep-fried Mars Bar (which has just celebrated 20 years since its creation), it’s a gift to the world from the good people of Scotland.
Though ‘gift’ is probably not the right word: if you buy this in a shop, it’ll cost £80 a bottle (though you can buy it for half that price direct from the brewery).
‘Go on, take a mouthful,’ says brewer Lewis Shand, the young entrepreneur responsible for the brew. ‘I think you’ll be surprised.’
OK, but I’m not looking forward to it. I’m a bit of a sissy when it comes to strong booze. Though I love my beer and wine, I steer clear of neat spirits, finding their fiery nature rather off-putting.
Surely, if Scotch is a mere 40 per cent alcohol, and this beer weighs in at 65 per cent, it’ll rip off the back of my throat?
I swirl the liquid round. Thicker than an average pint of bitter, and darker in tone, the beer is the colour of tea with the consistency of a thinnish gravy.
I take a big, brave gulp.
To my surprise, it’s rather smooth. There’s none of the heat or the harshness of neat tequila or vodka; it slips over my tongue and down my throat, lining my mouth with a thick coating.
Yes, it is quite bitter – I prefer a milder-tasting ale – but it’s not off the scale. There’s a definite maltiness and a rather pleasant sweet aftertaste at the centre and back of my tongue.
I’m happy to take a second sip. Just curiosity, you understand. And a third, and a fourth. . . I could, I’m sure, empty the glass.
Hold on a moment. I think I’d better stop while I’m ahead.
So, I ask Shand, why did he decide to brew a beer so potent? Is it something to do with the fact that the Scots consume 20 per cent more alcohol (22.8 units a week) than the English and Welsh?
The idea was simple, he says. His young company Brewmeister, set in the Aberdeenshire countryside, had successfully created conventional beers – a tasty 4 per cent pale ale, for example – but wanted to try something more adventurous.
Shand is not the first brewer to aim for the world’s strongest beer. In fact, there’s been a battle going on for a couple of years.
While it could be seen as an important piece of scientific exploration, others see it as just a bunch of not-quite-grown-up boys who want to be able to shout out to the world: ‘Mine is bigger than yours!’
Three years ago, another British company, BrewDog, also based in north-east Scotland, created Tactical Nuclear Penguin (don’t ask), which came in at 32 per cent alcohol.
This threw down the gauntlet.
In stepped a German brewer with Schorschbock, a 40 per cent beer. So BrewDog retaliated with Sink The Bismarck, at 41 per cent. The Germans then came back with a 44 per cent brew, only for BrewDog to trump them with The End Of History, at 55 per cent alcohol (though only 12 bottles were ever produced – and each cost £700 and as a gimmick was sold inside a stuffed squirrel).
Then in July 2010 a brewery in Holland looked to have seized the title – with a 60 per cent beer called Start The Future.
Until Shand came along with Armageddon a few weeks ago.
The brewer says: ‘We didn’t want just to break the record but to make something that’s got some character to it, something beautifully sweet and malty.’ Yeah, right.
In an age of binge-drinking, isn’t it irresponsible to bring out a product as potent as this?
Shand says this is not a beer that problem-drinkers will turn to. ‘We’ve designed it for people to consume like a fine brandy, in small amounts, not sitting in a park with a brown paper bag round the bottle. In any case, the price will put off problem-drinkers. These bottles are for sharing.’
So who is his typical customer?
‘People who like something different, who appreciate a fine quality product that’s made in small batches by people who care about what they’re doing.’ (Privately, I think there’s a big market for stag parties.)
The Brewmeister brewery is certainly out of the ordinary. Set in a tatty, 200-year-old farm building on the estate of Kincardine Castle, 25 miles outside Aberdeen, it looks out on to the Cairngorms. They use spring water from the estate to make the beer.
Inside, there are metal vats and sacks of malted barley, hops and yeast – but it’s clear everything is done on a very small scale: the beer is brewed in batches of just 40 bottles at a time. ‘Though we plan to expand,’ says Shand.
The place, frankly, is a bit of a mess: there’s a shotgun by the door – in case any rats decide to feast on the large sacks of grain piled against the wall.
But Shand is no ordinary brewer. The son of an accountant and an oil executive, he’s still only 26, the same age as his business partner, John McKenzie. The pair launched the business with a £15,000 investment that Shand had amassed at university (‘I started up a paintballing company while I was a student.’)
Though the business is still tiny – Shand has a day job with a bank, and McKenzie works off-shore in the oil industry – Shand says they’ve already had orders from ‘Australia, Sweden, America and a lot from London’. The next batch of Armageddon, which will be ready in a few days, is sold out.
So what’s the secret of this super-strength beer?
The answer is a process called ‘freeze distillation’.
Any traditional beer-maker can, with the right choice of yeast, get to a point where the beer is 10 or 12 per cent alcohol. After that, the high alcohol levels kill off the yeast that is turning the sugars in the malt into more alcohol, so you can’t get stronger beer using traditional methods.
But Brewmeister’s trick is to cool the beer to zero degrees, when, of course, the water starts to freeze – but the alcohol does not. So if you discard the ice as it forms, making the drink less diluted, what you’re left with is a very alcoholic mixture.
But not a fiery one – because the alcohol is still swimming in the malty-hoppy mixture.
‘What we do is the reverse of conventional distillation. When you make whisky, you heat up the mixture and the alcohol evaporates, taking it away from the grain mixture. Then it is condensed and aged in barrels.
‘But we leave the alcohol inside the grain mixture and take the water out. This means the end product tastes much sweeter and less harsh.’
It still qualifies as ‘beer’ since it uses the classic ingredients: water, malted barley, hops.
Shand says: ‘We don’t add sugar or rice, rubbish like that, which you sometimes get in lagers.’
This, he insists, is a niche artisan product – albeit an expensive one at £80 a pop.
The reason for the high cost? They brew only very small quantities of beer at any one time, and the freeze distillation process means they throw away about 85 per cent of the brew mixture. Plus, ‘about £12 of the price goes straight to the taxman’.
‘We are,’ Shand says grandly, ‘testing the boundaries of brewing.’
Well, I suppose so.
The truth is that despite its liver-busting alcohol content, it tastes far better than the tramp’s favourite, Carlsberg Special Brew, which is 9 per cent. Although the taste is nowhere near as enjoyable as that of a conventional real ale.
As I leave the brewery, Lewis Shand says: ‘We’re in the process of having the record verified by the people from Guinness.’
With the mention of Guinness, I suddenly feel thirsty – and realise that I’ll be sticking to a more traditional beer.
This tragedy shows the importance of responsible alcohol sellers, bartenders and servers. Learn to possibly prevent tragedies like this one by educating yourself in responsible alcohol service practices
BLOOMINGTON — Radley Monson’s drinking problem was compared to a game of Russian roulette Friday that ended with a tragic accident that left a good friend dead and Monson sentenced to seven years in prison.
Prosecutor Matt Banach told a judge at Monson’s sentencing hearing on aggravated drunk driving charges that the 20-year-old defendant did not qualify for probation in the Feb. 15 death of Nick Kauffmann, also 20, from Bloomington.
Monson “exemplifies the target audience for underage drinking that needs to be shown the consequences of underage drinking and getting behind the wheel,” said Banach, asking for a 9-year prison term.
Testimony at the sentencing hearing packed with supporters of the victim and Monson included evidence that Monson continued to drink after the accident and lied to treatment providers and court services personnel about his apparent addiction to alcohol.
Monson used his chance to make a statement to turn directly to Kauffman’s family and apologize for the crash that occurred after he and three others, including Kaufmann, were served alcohol for several hours at the former Danvers Y Tap. The rural tavern voluntarily closed after the accident and misdemeanor charges are pending against the bartender.
“I wish it had been me,” not because of the legal consequences “but because of the entire pain and suffering I’ve caused your entire family,” Monson told Kauffman’s family.
Monson’s mother, Traci Monson, testified her son told her after the crash that, “I’ve killed one of my best friends and I’m so ashamed. I hope his parents can forgive me.”
Defense lawyer James Waller asked for probation and county jail time for Monson, saying he shouldn’t be sent to prison because of an addiction: “It’s just not something we do anymore,” Waller said.
In his comments before handing down a sentence, Judge Paul Lawrence recognized that Monson is “a good person who made a bad decision on this evening,” but that a prison term was necessary to deter others from making the same bad choice.
After the hearing, Banach said the seven-year term “is a just sentence that reflects how gravely serious this crime was.”
We found these links to discussion of Wisconsin and it’s enforcement of over-serving of alcohol laws.
We thought our bartenders, sellers, and servers might find the information useful.
Wisconsin Bartender License Course
The Illinois Liquor Control Commission (ILCC) provides many resources for individuals and establishments to do the right thing.
We (Serving Alcohol Inc) are featured in the current issue (Summer 2012) of the ILCC News in the New BASSET providers section. You can read the newsletter here: http://www.state.il.us/lcc/DOCS/Spring2012web.pdf
All issues can be viewed from here:
More educational resources can be found on their website:
Document Title: Exploring the Drugs-Crime Connection within the Electronic Dance Music and Hip-Hop Nightclub Scenes
Author(s): Tammy L. Anderson, Ph.D. ; Philip R. Kavanaugh ; Ronet Bachman ; Lana D. Harrison
Document No.: 219381
Date Received: August 2007
Award Number: 2004-IJ-CX-0040
Purpose and Objectives. The main research objective of project 2004-IJ-CX-0040 was to explore how the cultural ethos, behavioral norms, activities, and individual and group identities (i.e., subcultural phenomena), inherent to the electronic dance music (EDM- trance, house, and techno music) and the hip hop/rap (HH) nightclub scenes in Philadelphia, impacted the relationship between alcohol, drugs, and crime, with additional attention to victimization (i.e., the ADC + V link). These two music scenes provide a major source of leisure activity for many young adults today, yet the subcultures surrounding them are disparate and have been linked to diverse social problems, including alcohol and illegal drug abuse, criminal activity and victimization. This understudied, but increasingly popular social phenomenon has the potential to expand the scope of the drugs/crime debate to settings and populations not previously studied and to increasingly salient issues in contemporary society.
Secondary objectives include elaborating on how the ADC + V relationship varies by two dimensions: the demographic make-up of participants (e.g., race/ethnicity and gender) and their involvement with and commitment to the subcultures surrounding the respective nightclub scenes. This second dimension has the potential to establish a typology or profile of EDM and HH fans, which can be used to advance both an academic understanding of this important youth culture phenomena and produce effective prevention or intervention strategies to circumvent personal and social consequences.
Research Questions. Main research questions include: 1) What are the patterns and meanings of drug and alcohol use among participants in these settings and what consequences arise from them? 2) What are the patterns of criminal activity among participants and how are they experienced? 3) What are the patterns of victimization among participants and how is it experienced? How does victimization differ from that documented in other settings of criminological interest? 4) What is the nature of the relationship between alcohol, drugs, crime and victimization and how do subcultural phenomena impact it? 5) How do extant theories fare in explaining the ADC + V link among the diverse groups of participants in both nightclub settings?
We begin our report with a discussion of the two music scenes we studied: HH and EDM, giving special attention to the problems and concerns they present to the criminal justice system and other social service agencies. Next, we discuss the methodology we used to address our research questions, including some of the issues we faced while doing the fieldwork and the potential contributions and limitations of it. The major section of the report reviews our substantive findings. We organize them by the research questions listed above. Specifically, we first review the drugs, crime, and victimization patterns we found. The findings synthesize several types of crime information: self-reports of offending and victimization, and reports of having witnessed others committing crime or being victimized at club events from in-depth interviews and field notes from direct observation at club events. Included in our discussion of the alcohol, drugs, crime and victimization patterns are demographic variation where we found it (addressing our project’s secondary objectives). Next, we address questions #4 and #5 about the alcohol, drugs and crime link at nightclub events. Here, we review our findings and offer contributions to extant criminological theories. Recommendations for further research are also discussed. We end the report with policy recommendations for officials, practitioners, and private interests.