Brewing & Distilling

Did The Pilgrims On The Mayflower Really Drink Beer?

As we celebrated Thanksgiving this past week, it was a very good time to a good time to be with friends and family, and reflect about the real reason for the holiday: To give thanks for our many blessings. It is also a wonderful weekend to sample some of the seasonal craft beers that are in abundance this time of year. Be it Pumpkin, Holiday Spice, Specialty Belgian, English Strong Ale, Fruit Beer – there are a myriad of flavors out there to try!

One other interesting thing to note, (and probably is not taught to grade school kids) is that the Pilgrims who came over on the Mayflower and landed on Plymouth Rock actually did drink beer, in the form of ale. They had to – plain water can harbor bacteria and could make them sick or even worse. Small (low alcohol) beer on the voyage was safe to drink because beer with its lower pH of around pH 4-5 and alcohol (just a few percent will do the trick) will not harbor pathogenic (disease causing) bacteria long term. Ale also provided some of the needed calories to make the journey – it was considered a source of food (liquid bread).

So, this Thanksgiving Weekend,I hope you enjoyed yourself and raised a toast of your favorite beer to the Native Americans and Pilgrims who made this great celebration a wonderful part of our lives!