What is a beer

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Rodbrew70, Jun 25, 2016.

  1. Rodbrew70

    Rodbrew70 Member

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    Hi guys sorry to be a pain in the arse, but here in Oz we have beers called draught beers, my understanding is that draught is a method as in 'draught a keg' rather than a style of beer! My question is as an extract brewer if I'm brewing draught what the hell am I actually brewing??
    BTW I suspect it's a lager, and it's delicious!
     
  2. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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  3. Clarkey35

    Clarkey35 New Member

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    Having visited Australia many times and having a lot of Aussie mates, I always found it confusing!

    As a summary, I think you can say "draught" usually means lager in Australia (whether on tap or bottled) and this terminology seems to be confined to Australia (and maybe NZ) only. Here in the UK it means "beer on tap", usually keg(?)

    "Premium" Aussie lagers are usually fairly strong in alcohol (5%) but fresh, easy drinking, and always very cold. As for "bitter" e.g. Victoria Bitter, it's another odd naming convention only found in Aus too I think i.e. it's nothing like a Englishman's "bitter" (a type of pal ale) and more just a regular lager which happens to be relatively bitter.

    Hope this helps.
     
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  4. sbaclimber

    sbaclimber Well-Known Member

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    I lived in NZ for 4 years, and can confirm that "draught" and "bitter" have very similar meanings there than in Oz.
    e.g. DB Draught and Bitter...both available in cans, and neighter particulary drinkable. :?
     
  5. Rodbrew70

    Rodbrew70 Member

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    Thanks for that guys! I suspected that lager was what I was dealing with! The brews I have done are quite 'meaty' and flavoursome and with the addition of hops have developed a licourice hint! Which is very drinkable! More research and testing is required I think....off to the fridge to do more 'testing'!!
     
  6. artbreu

    artbreu Member

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    In the U.S. we say "draft" instead of "draught," but stouts are often marketed as "draught" nonetheless to differentiate them, presumably because they are nitro beers. So, I guess you could say that in the U.S. "draught" refers to nitro beers. At least that's how I've come to think of it.
     
  7. sbaclimber

    sbaclimber Well-Known Member

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    To further complicated things...what just occurred to me is the name "draft horse".
    We had a couple Belgians as I was growing up, which were of course referred to as draft horses. I always assumed it had something to do with them pulling wagons full of beer (think the Budweiser Clydesdales), but according to wikipedia it doesn't. I am still not so sure.... ;)
     
  8. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    And then there's the draft that is mitigated by closing a window.... Damn English! Digression aside, what is a beer? If I go into a German pub (Kneipe) and order "Ein Bier", I get whatever pale pilsner they have on tap. Same order at my local brew pub here in the States, I get a stupid look. Dictionaries would tell me "Beer" is a cereal-based fermented drink generally flavored with hops. Then there's the subtle difference between ale and lager.... I couldn't go into my local brewpub and order a draft without a stupid look from the wait staff but in Australia, apparently it would produce the same result as asking for a Bier in Germany. But what do I get when I order a pint? In England that got me the house beer, whatever that might have been. Here I'd get a dumb look. So what's a beer? Apparently the best answer is it depends on where you are.
     
  9. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    funny ive always asked the local bar tender whats on draft today, I know its not draught but Ive never really paid attention to the word per-say just thought it meant whats in the kegs vrs bottles...makes you think ;)
     
  10. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    To me, draft has always equaled on tap.
     
  11. sbaclimber

    sbaclimber Well-Known Member

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    I agree....although it is interesting to note, that it seems to always come down to either an ale or lager / pilsner.
    It would blow my mind if I were to ever go into a pub / Kneipe / bar, order a beer, and get something like a stout or a weizen. :shock:
     
  12. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    All beers are either ales or lagers, right? (Assuming pilsner is a type of lager)
     
  13. sbaclimber

    sbaclimber Well-Known Member

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    (assuming "needs" = "beers"...)
    By the simplest definition of ale = top fermented vs. lager = bottom fermented, sure, most beers would fall into one of those two categories.
    I personally am not big on using those names to generally describe what type of yeast was used though. I always cringe when I hear or read something like "wheat ale" to describe a weizen. It may be technically correct, but I would still prefer "wheat beer", to avoid confusing my brain... :lol:
     
  14. Rodbrew70

    Rodbrew70 Member

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    So I can walk into my local bottle'o and grab a slab of draught or rock into the pub and ask for a schooner of draught! Stubbies/tap beer same brewer same name, some extract homebrews are even advertised the same, as draught! Is there a way of guessing/telling weather it's an ale or lager??
    as a side note the brew I grew up drinking was made by a famous Australian brewer which exports a lager and I'm guessing that what I was drinking was a lager.
     
  15. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    Interesting typo I made there, eh? It's corrected!
     
  16. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    Beer engines aside, that sounds about right.
     
  17. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    lol yup, the point was the word most commonly used here might not make since in another country and vis versa
     
  18. Cockfighter

    Cockfighter New Member

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    Haha! There's so many Australianisms in this post I don't think any non-Australians would have a clue what your'e talking about.
    Bottle'o, slab, "rock into", schooner, stubbies... :D

    Generally it's pretty easy to tell typical lagers and ales apart. Lagers are usually crisp and dry with little fruitiness or other yeasty flavours. Lager yeasts ferment "cleaner", meaning they produce very few yeast flavours and aromas.

    Ale yeasts do, and you'll taste and smell this.

    Australian kit beers, as far as I know, probably won't be a lager. I think Coopers kits come with generic ale yeasts that are quite temperature resistant and produce good beer at Australian temps.
    At bests it's probably some kind of resistant ale/lager blend designed for maximum versatility.

    If you didn't bother cooling your wort during fermentation, you haven't made a lager. If you had a lager yeast and fermented above 15 degrees... you haven't really made a lager - It'll turn out much more like an ale.
    If you had an ale yeast and tried to ferment it at 10 degrees, it probably wouldn't have started.

    Look at the temperature recommendation for the yeast. If it's something like 18-25 degrees it's an ale yeast and anything you brew with it will be an ale.
     
  19. pickers

    pickers New Member

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    'Australian kit beers, as far as I know, probably won't be a lager.'

    Hey Cocko, there happens to be numerous kits in Oz that are bottom fermented at cool temps, most of the time we substitute the yeast included for a better one as we are not sure how well the packs are stored. Cockfighter, strange name, over here that would be someone that walks around swingin his tool. Anyway I'm as dry as a dead dingo's donga and might have a froffie :)

    Hi Rodbrew, it can all be a bit frustrating, I have been trying to find an All Grain recipe for a 'Tooheys New' or 'Carlton Draught' or even a 'Melbourne Bitter' just to please a few buddies but am not having much luck. Pretty sure that famous lager is not even owned by aussies anymore.

    Cheers. Pickers
     
  20. Mark D Pirate

    Mark D Pirate Well-Known Member

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    Some of the coopers kits come with straight Coopers Ale yeast , from memory international series come with a mix of Ale and Lager yeast
    Some of the TC kits come with a third party Ale yeast
     

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