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From the January – February edition of Britarch (thanks to Merryn for pointing it out to us): Burnt mound theory tested to perfection David Chapman found an eroding “burnt mound” – a common but unexplained prehistoric mound of fired stones – on the Lleyn peninsula at Hell’s Mouth. Excavations in 2008 revealed an oak trough […]


Reinventing the wheel

Reinventing the wheel

Paul Rondelez in Cork drew our attention to a paper from the Journal of the Royal Historical and Archaeological Association of Ireland from 1886 which spoke to us through the centuries. A kindred spirit and direct descendent of Daniel O’Connell, one Gabriel Redmond M.D., musing on the function of Fulachta Fiadh in the aforementioned paper, posited […]


Naked drunken fat ladies?

Naked drunken fat ladies?

Here’s a slide from tonights presentation to the GMIT Heritage Society. We’ll be presenting a talk on the beer experiment and Fulachta Fiadh at 7pm tonight in Rm. 940. We’ve been busy reading Pat McGovern’s ‘Uncorking the past’ which is where we encountered the Laussel Venus pictured here. Pat posits a paleolithic origin to alcohol making and […]


Dining and Dwelling Part 4

Part four of Dining and Dwelling publication (Part one here,  part two here and part three here) CONCLUSION So, what is the evidence for brewing? First, the experiment worked. Fermentation caused by wind-blown yeast even occurred in the leftover mash in the trough within a few hours. Secondly, a number of quern-stones have been found […]


Dining and Dwelling Part 3

Dining and Dwelling Part 3

Part three of Dining and Dwelling publication (Part one here, and part two here) Our first brewing experiment was carried out at Billy’s home in Headford, Co. Galway, in August 2007. In an effort to make the experiment authentic the equipment had to be basic. For the mash tun we used an old, leaky, wooden […]


Dining and Dwelling part 2

Dining and Dwelling part 2

Part two of Dining and Dwelling publication (Part one here) THE GREAT MYSTERY OF PREHISTORIC BREWING. In prehistoric times until the late Iron Age, metallurgy was limited to small hand tools and high-status items. Throughout prehistoric Europe one of the main challenges for the brewer (in the absence of suitable metal containers) was heating large […]


Dining & Dwelling

Dining & Dwelling

Last year Billy and Declan gave a presentation at the National Roads Authority’s annual archaeology seminar about the fulacht beer theory. You can see a video of the presentation here. The resultant  monograph Dining and Dwelling has just been  published by the NRA and is available through bookshops or directly from Wordwell Book Sales, Wordwell Limited, […]


Comments on the beer at YouTube

To date there have been 10, 650 views of the fulacht video on YouTube (produced by BigYes). Later this week we’ll be attending the launch of ‘Dining and Dwelling’ – the 6th monograph in the NRA monograph series, which will see the formal publication of our beer theory. Here’s a flavour of the comments from […]


Moore on Beer

Okay: It’s not exactly TED. But anyway, here’s our (Billy & Dec’s) presentation at the 2008 NRA Seminar (Dining and Dwelling) which is due for publication next month. Entitled: ‘Fulachta fiadh and the beer experiment: suggested future research strategies.’ Any Chinese viewers, please forgive Declan. Also note Erratum: Dr. Patrick McGovern, sometimes referred to as […]


Ancient Egyptian Barley

Ancient Egyptian Barley

Via our daily Google Alert email we learned of some interesting research into ancient barley at the University of Warwick, where ‘boffins’ have recovered significant DNA information ‘from a lost form of ancient barley that triumphed for over 3000 years seeing off: 5 changes in civilisation, water shortages and a much more popular form of […]


9,000 Year Old Beer – Chateau Jiahu

Via Archaeoblog: 9,000-year-old brew hitting the shelves this summer This summer, how would you like to lean back in your lawn chair and toss back a brew made from what may be the world’s oldest recipe for beer? Called Chateau Jiahu, this blend of rice, honey and fruit was intoxicating Chinese villagers 9,000 years ago—long […]


A Big Beer Poster

A Big Beer Poster

Here’s a poster we debuted at WAC 6 – Due to the always-unexpected Irish rain it was very quickly destroyed…. We did get our money back!


ICB Beer of the Year 2009

Congratulations to Aidan and Ronan at Galway Hooker on being awarded ICB Beer of the Year 2009. From the Irish Craft Brewers website: “Galway Hooker has featured in the ICB awards since their inception in 2007. This year it returns to its place as Ireland’s supreme champion, as voted by the drinkers. Members of Irish […]


Beer

Beer

This arrived to us via Max Nelson in Canada – we made the January/February edition of  ‘Beer’ Magazine – The USA’s ‘Newsstands #1 selling Beer Magazine‘. Thanks Max… Here’s a gratuitous scan of the Cover Girl: Here’s a snippet of the editorial from Beer ‘History 201’ – ‘The Luck of the Irish’: And a lovely […]


Boscos Flaming Stone Beer

Boscos Flaming Stone Beer

We’ve recently been in touch with Chuck Spypeck and Jeremy Feinstone of Boscos Brewery in Memphis, Tennessee, USA, as far as we can tell, the world’s last remaining commercial hot rock brewery. Boscos Juniper “Stone” Beer was a Gold Medal Winner at the 2000 Great American Beer Festival and for all intents and purposes is […]


Beer Comic

Colleen over at Middle Savagery has posted a comic (using Comic Life, a really fun, easy to use piece of software that I’ve been using for my nephew’s entertainment) showing the brewing at WAC. Thanks Colleen.


Demonstrating Ancient Brewing

Demonstrating Ancient Brewing

Feel free to visit us at UCD this Thursday and Friday where we’ll be demonstrating our fulacht brewing.. We’ll have limited samples available. We bottled about 50 litres last weekend. The beer came out really clean and we previewed it to a few friends on Saturday night. The response was quite good. The bog myrtle […]


Weekend Brewing

Weekend Brewing

In preparation for WAC 6 in UCD next week we’ve brewed up a fresh brew of our Ale for general sampling and consumption on the day. Our brand new, watertight (ish), portable (ish) Fulacht held out after application of a good coat of (non toxic) bitumen paint externally. Our original fulacht, an old cattle trough, […]


WAC 6 Fringe beer

WAC 6 Fringe beer

We’ve been invited to present the beer experiment at WAC 6 in July as part of the WAC Fringe at UCD’s Belfield Campus. WAC is shaping up to be a great event. We’ll be giving out free samples of our Fulacht Beer/Hot Rock Ale at the event as well as samples brewed by a student […]


Great Beer Experiment video

Regular readers will have noticed that we’ve posted the video of last years Great Beer Experiment using VodPod on the right… Produced by BigYes, it documents the process and the events last August – please bear in mind when viewing that we had consumed quite a bit of our beer by the end of the […]


Beer Mugs

“People might think finding skeletons is spooky, but it is really awe inspiring,” says a Ms. Green, education officer with Canterbury Archaeological Trust, in this article from the BBC; “It’s when you literally come face to face with the people from the past”. More interestingly though, a crouched inhumation found in a barrow had a […]


Brewing archaeology

The latest edition of the anthropology (in the American sense) blog carnival Four Stone Hearth came courtesy of Archaeoporn while we were away, and we’re delighted that our post on Corofin is linked to. Thanks once again to Archaeoporn for including us. The only problem with blog carnivals is that you just keep meandering the […]


Postscript on the degradation of spent grain

We’ve done just a quick web search for ‘degradation of spent grain’ and encountered this – an extract from a World Intellectual Property Organization site concerning the invention of a process to isolate a protein concentrate and a fibre concentrate from fermentation residue, in particular from fermentation residue that is obtained from an ethanol producing […]


Response to Archaeobotanists letter

Response to Archaeobotanists letter

In reply to the Irish Archaeobotanical Discussion Groups letter about the article on Fulacht Fiadh and brewing published in Archaeology Ireland, in the first instance we’d like to state our delight in receiving such a stimulating and provoking response and warmly acknowledge the group’s congratulations on our experimental endeavours. It is always a welcome and […]