Figure 1. Sala Vivé Semi Seco

Introduction

Dolores Sala Vivé co-founded Freixenet in Spain with her husband Pedro Ferrer Bosch.  The winery history claims that the sparkling wine was made in homage to her, the “Grande Dame of Sparkling Wine” (salavive website, 2010). The winery itself is in the Mexican state of Querétaro (see salavive website for more information, 2010) and was constructed at the beginning of 1980. Drawing on the experience and tradition gained at the Spanish sparkler producer, Freixenet, the Mexican winery has added an excellent location, featuring a claim for some of the “best geo-climactic characteristics for producing quality sparkling wine 2,000 meters above sea level with unusual and extreme conditions for the maturation of the grape (25ºC during the day and 0ºC at night)” (salavive website, 2010).  Confirmation of these claims is beyond the scope of this present research.

Aim

This experiment, conducted by two researchers, was designed to investigate the characteristics of  the Sala Vivé Semi Seco sparkling wine and to follow up on and corroborate earlier research (unpublished).  Researchers in this experiment investigated aroma, flavor, color, vessel design, bubbles and overall drinkability, culminating their experiment with a satisfaction evaluation.

Method

A 750 ml bottle of Sala Vivé was obtained as a gift from a wedding reception.  The bottle was chilled for 24 hours to a temperature of 3 degrees centigrade (producer recommends 6 to 8 degrees) and opened under controlled conditions: removal of the plastic covering and cage, tipping the bottle to a 45 degree angle and pulling the cork while rotating the bottle but not the cork.  Approximately 75 ml of liquid was poured into clean glass vessels.  Aroma was evaluated by smelling the wine.  Flavor and other attributes (see Aim above) were analyzed by tasting the wine and discussing it amongst the research team at great length and, subsequently, satisfaction was assessed.  The glass was held up to outdoor lighting to evaluate the color, and aesthetic aspects of the vessel were considered. The experiment was considered to be concluded when the bottle had been drunk.

Results

The results for Sala Vivé Semi Seco are shown in Table 1 below.

Table 1. Characteristics of Sala Vivé Semi Seco.

Characteristic Result
Aroma Strong wood/cork with stale breath
Flavor Sweet with hints of shampoo, and conditioner finish. Label (in Japanese) suggests flavors of apple and pear. This research suggests that another conclusion could be drawn and cannot confirm the fruit elements in the flavor.
Color Conventional sparkling blanc de blanc wine color where if 1 is pale and 5 very yellow, this wine would be a 4.
Satisfaction Might do to replace some beers (Bud?) on a hot afternoon.  Perhaps not.
Vessel Design The picture of Granny Sala Vivé crowns an otherwise conventional label (see figure 1)
Bubbles The bubbles did not overfoam or fade.
Drinkability The researchers could not complete the experiment, choosing to refresh their palates with a different wine before the bottle was finished.  As the wine increased in temperature – from the 3degrees C on opening to the 6 to 8 degrees recommended by the producer, the desire to continue the experiment on the part of the research team declined dramatically.  While the subject wine was willing (and able) to continue the experiment, the research team was unable to pursue it to the set conclusion.

The average of scores given to this wine by the research team was 2.

Conclusion

The research team assigned to do the follow up research on Sala Vivé has confirmed that initial investigation (unpublished results).  This study itself, however, might have been tainted by exposure to the previous research on the wine subject.  The Rosenthal Effect (Wikipedia, 2010) might have come into play, leading the team in this inquiry to expect the wine to fail to live up to sparkling wine standards (established through extensive previous research experiments).  The wine under investigation in this experiment thus might have fallen to the low expectations of the researchers.

References

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mexican_wine#Wine_producing_areas_and_vintages_in_Mexico

http://salavive.com/svi_ha_e.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pygmalion_effect

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Figure 1. Wyndham Estate Bin 444 Cabernet Sauvignon

Introduction

Wyndham Estates, located in the renowned Hunter Valley of NSW, Australia, pride themselves on the intensity of their wines (see Wyndham estate website, 2010).  They classify their cheaper wines by “Bin” followed by a triple digit number, which designates the grape varietal.  Cabernet sauvignon, the grape that makes in Bin 444, is “one of the world’s most widely recognized red wine grape varieties”, and has apparently only existed since the 17th century when a chance crossing between Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc varietals occurred (Wikipedia, 2010).

The Wyndham Estate website (2010) shows images of large marsupials wandering amongst the vines.  It is unclear whether the beasts are browsing on the grass between the rows of vines, helping themselves to the ripe fruit, or attempting to steal a few bottles of product, stowed safely in their pouches while sproinging away at high speed.

Aim

This experiment was designed to investigate numerous characteristics of Wyndham Estate Bin 444 2007 wine including, but not limited to, aroma, flavour, colour, satisfaction and vessel design.

Method

A 750 ml bottle of Wyndham Estate Bin 444 2007 was obtained from a local supermarket for NZ$11.99.  The bottle was opened under controlled conditions.  Approximately 100 ml of liquid was poured into clean glass vessels.  The contents of the can were decanted into clean glass vessels.  Aroma was evaluated by smelling the liquor.  Flavour was analysed by tasting the wine and discussing it with a research collaborator at great length and, subsequently, satisfaction was assessed.  The glass was held up to a standardized light to evaluate the colour and aesthetic aspects of the vessel were considered.

Results

The results for Wyndham Estate Bin 444 2007 are shown in table 1 below.

Table 1. Characteristics of Wyndham Estate Bin 444 2007.

Characteristic Result
Aroma Summer fruit pudding with a suggestion of charred woodiness.  Similar to  those Japanese fruit candies which are wrapped in rice paper you can eat
Flavour Chunky with obvious tannins and slightly tart and bitter, but not unpleasant.  A conglomeration of red, summery fruits finished off with a splash of black pepper
Colour Deep ruby red
Satisfaction Suitable for chilly evenings while watching cooking shows on TV
Vessel Design Uncomplicated black, cream, red and gold label wrapped around a classically shaped, green wine bottle.
Legs The glass was vigorously swirled, the liquor began to form distinct rivulets after 19 seconds
Drinkability 6

Conclusion

Wyndham Estate Bin 444 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon does comply with the company mandate of producing wines “for people who want more intensity and sensation from their wine experience” (Wyndham website, 2010).

Having assessed the characteristics of the beverage, a more urgent line of inquiry needs to be addressed, that being the question of how a large marsupial which had stolen a bottle of wine would gain access to the liquor contained within the bottle.  Fortunately, Wydham Estate Bin 444 is secured by the use of a twist off cap.  However, with their crap forearms, twist caps could still provide problematic for the marsupial.  It is postulated that, through past experience being passed down through the generations of marsupials, they may collaborate to achieve the desired outcome.  However, it is beyond the scope of this study to confirm this hypothesis.

References

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cabernet_Sauvignon

http://wyndhamestate.com/Wyndham.html#/Home/

Figure 1. Kingfisher Premium

Introduction

Kingfisher beer dominates the Indian beer market with a range of products including Kingfisher Premium, Strong, Ultra, Blue, Red and Bohemia (Wikipedia, 2010), and it’s parent company, United Breweries, has been producing beer since 1915 (see United Breweries website, 2010).  In addition to being loved by the Indian public, Kingfisher beers also appear to be loved by judges at international beer exhibitions as they have won no less than six international awards.  It is possibly this popularity that has led Kingfisher to adopt the slogan “The king of good times” (see Kingfisherworld website, 2010).

The target audience of Kingfisher beers is clearly aimed at young, wealthy males as the website displays cornerstones of maleness in swimsuit calendars, a model search, sponsoring a soccer team and a Formula 1 motor racing team.

Aim

This experiment was designed to compare numerous characteristics of Kingfisher Premium with Kingfisher Strong beer including, but not limited to, aroma, flavour, colour, satisfaction and vessel design.

Method

Six 330 ml bottles of Kingfisher Premium (5.0% alc/vol) and a single 650 ml bottle of Kingfisher Strong (less than 8% alc/vol) were obtained from a local bottle store for NZ$12.00 and NZ$8.00 respectively.  The beers were chilled to approximately 6 degree C.  The stoppers were removed under controlled conditions and the contents were decanted into clean glass vessels.  Aroma was evaluated by smelling the beers.  Flavour was analysed by tasting the beers and discussing them with a research collaborator at great length and, subsequently, satisfaction was assessed.  The glasses were held up to a standardized light to evaluate colour, and aesthetic aspects of the vessels were considered.

Results

The results for Kingfisher Premium and Kingfisher Strong are shown in table 1 below.

Table 1. Characteristics of Kingfisher Premium and Kingfisher Strong.

Characteristic Kingfisher Premium Kingfisher Strong
Aroma Significant citrusy and appley hoppy odour with a smidgen of white grapes Clean fresh scent reminiscent of lying in a field of wheat which has been drying in the searing heat of a late spring day
Flavour Initially, bitter and slightly floral hops rush onto the taste buds and linger pleasantly high on the palate.  This is complemented by an underlying malty sweetness. Slightly sharp taste that bites down the sides of your tongue finishing with the aromatic taste of lemon. Cumbersome flavourings become a little muddled.  Leaves the palate tasting as if spearmint chewing gum has been taken 10 minutes prior
Colour Deep yellow, reminiscent of a pale caramel Clear amber liquor similar to apricot infused honey
Satisfaction A premier candidate to accompany almost any Indian curry, particularly nice with papad Palatable, but high alcohol content could leave the consumer with impaired faculties
Vessel Design Uncomplicated white, red and gold label with an image of a kingfisher (see figure 1) Maroon, gold and white label induces imagery of a Victorian bordello or the flocked wallpaper seen in Indian restaurants across England in the 1990s (see figure 2)
Head An effervescent fizz produces a thin white veneer on the surface which disappears completely within 29 seconds A thin white spume rapidly disperses exposing the beer beneath within 36 seconds
Drinkability 7 6

Figure 2. Kingfisher Strong

Conclusion

This comparative study has uncovered several interesting features of Kingfisher Premium and Kingfisher Strong.  Firstly, both beers consisted of considerable amounts of flavour which directly led to substantial satisfaction.  Secondly, Kingfisher Premium appears to be a good candidate for a session beer, perhaps best consumed in the early evening on a balcony, while Kingfisher strong would not be unpleasant shared with friends and accompanying a meal.  Finally, the inextricable link between Kingfisher, India and curry could not be avoided by the researchers and the consumption of the samples was accompanied by palak paneer and dahl makhani with garlic naan.  It is beyond the scope of this study to evaluate whether the presence of curry influenced the experience of consuming the beverages, but it all went down without complaint.  When considering the outcome of these two heavyweights of the beverage world locked in a fight to the death – the agility and zippyness of Premium against the raw strength of, erm, Strong – the beer left standing at the end would probably be Premium, albeit with a bloodied nose and a broken limb or two and perhaps a large patch of hair missing, gripped in the dying hand of Strong.

References

http://www.kingfisherworld.com/index.aspx

http://www.theubgroup.com/index.aspx

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kingfisher_(beer)

Figure 1. Harbin Beer

Introduction

The production of beer-like beverages in China has a long history dating back to around 7000 BC (Wikipedia, 2010), although rice and wheat has often been used in place of barley.  This information questions the claim by Harbin Brewery, which was founded in 1900 AD, that it produces “the earliest beer brewed in China”, creating a 9000 year discrepancy (Harbin Beer label, 2010).   Harbin Beer (哈尔滨啤酒) is a weaker (3.6% vol.) lager-style beer made from “water, malt, rice, hops” (Harbin Beer label, 2010).  Harbin produces several types of beers including Hapi, Hapi Golden, Hatepi Heart Beer 10o and Harbin Wheat King 10o (ratebeer, 2010).

Aim

This experiment was designed to investigate numerous characteristics of Harbin Beer including, but not limited to, aroma, flavor, colour, satisfaction and vessel design.

Method

A 610 ml bottle of Harbin Beer was obtained from a local bottle store for NZ$4.50.  The cap of the bottle was removed under controlled conditions using a bottle cap leveraging device.  The contents of the bottle were decanted into clean glass vessels.  Aroma was evaluated by smelling the beer.  Flavour was analysed by tasting the beer and discussing it with a research collaborator at great length and, subsequently, satisfaction was assessed.  The glass was held up to a standardized light to evaluate the colour and aesthetic aspects of the vessel were considered.

Results

The results for Harbin Beer are shown in table 1 below.

Table 1. Characteristics of Harbin Beer

Characteristic Result
Aroma Sweet scented, like freshly bailed hay, with floral, hoppy undertones
Flavour Watery, with a distinct lack of flavouring.  Inoffensive aftertaste due to the almost complete absence of tastebud stimulation
Colour Pale yellow, evoking memories of a visit to the doctor’s to produce a sample
Satisfaction Having consumed the beverage, researchers were found wanting (beer with real flavour)
Vessel Design A crudely embossed, large green bottle adorned with a mainly white, gold and green label (see figure 1). Three gold “medals” at the bottom of the label promise award-winning achievement, but on closer inspection informs that it is “the earliest beer brewed in China” (see figure 2)
Head A thin fluffy head dissipates in 54 seconds
Drinkability 4

Figure 2. Harbin Beer ‘Medals’

Conclusion

Harbin Beer managed to underwhelm the researchers in the majority of tests.  This disappointment led to a protracted discussion as to whether the remaining liquid should be consumed or discarded.  The presence of rice in the ingredients may explain the final product being almost completely devoid of flavour.  The over-riding deduction from the analysis is that Harbin Beer is disappointing, and the almost complete nonexistence of flavours means that it will only be purchased again if nothing else is available.

References

Harbin Beer bottle label (2010)

http://www.ratebeer.com/brewers/harbin-beer-company-anheuser-busch/2951/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beer_and_breweries_in_China

Figure 1. De Kuyper Kirsch

Introduction

Holland, renowned for its cheese, flatness and wooden shoes, is home to De Kuyper Royal Distillers, the producers of those garishly-coloured, fruity liqueurs found in parents’ drinks cabinets around the world, often seen with a sugary crust around the cap (www.dekuyper.com, 2010).  De Kuyper started trading in 1695 and remains a family business to this day, and currently produces “over 70 different products”, most of which are extremely vividly coloured (www.dekuypercompany.com, 2010), in fact, colouration appears to be a large part of their marketing as their product range is displayed with corresponding colour of each liquor (www.dekuyper.com/liqueurs/, 2010).

The origins of kirsch, a colourless fruit brandy, are a little hazy, but production utilises a “double-distillation of morello cherries … including their stones”, and “about 10 kilograms (22 pounds) of cherries go into the making of a 750 ml bottle of Kirsch” (Wikipedia.org, 2010).  Perhaps the most well-known use of kirsch is as an essential ingredient in traditional Swiss cheese fondue recipes, but is also used in cocktails such as the Lady Finger (Wikipedia.org, 2010).

Aim

This experiment was designed to investigate numerous characteristics of De Kuyper Kirsch including, but not limited to, aroma, flavor, colour, satisfaction and vessel design.

Method

A 500 ml sample of De Kuyper Kirsch was collected from a local bottle store for NZ$36.00.  The bottle cap was removed under controlled conditions.  15 ml samples were decanted into clean ceramic vessels.  Aroma was evaluated by smelling the sample.  Flavour was analysed by tasting the samples and discussing results with a research collaborator at great length and, subsequently, satisfaction was assessed.  The bottle was held up to a standardized light to evaluate the colour of the liquor, and aesthetic aspects of the vessel were considered.

Results

The results for De Kuyper Kirsch are shown in table 1 below.

Table 1. Characteristics of De Kuyper Kirsch

Characteristic Result
Aroma Strong scent of nail varnish remover with a suggestion of sweetened almonds verging on the marzipanesque
Flavour After the initial, harsh alcoholic burn has dissipated, synthetic  cherry flavour comes to the fore which recedes leaving a distant fruity aftertaste
Colour Clear, colourless liquid
Satisfaction Drunk as an undiluted spirit (40% vol.), satisfaction is limited by the subject’s ability to resist the urge to dilute the spirit with an alternative substance such as orange juice or carbonated lemon beverages
Vessel Design Tall, sleek, elegant, clear glass bottle which is adorned with a simple, two-colour label in cream and maroon (see figure 1)
Drinkability 3

Conclusion

The study revealed that, while cherries are generally regarded as delicious, after double-distillation much of this delectability disappears in De Kuyper Kirsch.   Furthermore, De Kuyper Kisrch is somewat disappointing in that it lacks the vibrant colours of other beverages made by the distillery.  While it is beyond the scope of this study to evaluate the best use of De Kuyper Kirsch, the researchers suspect that Swiss cheese fondues may be the most efficient (and tasty) method of disguising the harsh alcoholic burn associated with consumption of the undiluted liquor.

References

http://www.dekuyper.com/

http://www.dekuyper.com/liqueurs/

http://www.dekuypercompany.com/

http://www.freedrinkrecipes.com/cocktails-drinks-recipes/ladyfinger-drink-recipe.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kirsch

Figure 1. Indo no Aooni

Introduction

Although Nagano prefecture’s Yahou Brewing company adeptly touts its wares through a contemporary and trendy website, its expertly crafted ales need no advertisement – they should sell on taste alone. “Indo no Aooni” (インドの青鬼) (Indian Blue Demon) is an IPA sold only in finer liquor shops and upscale Tokyo supermarkets at 280yen per 350ml can. This high-alcohol undertaking (7.0%ABV) is made of only two ingredients (malt and hops) and claims to be same recipe controversial London brewer George Hodgson invented in the late 18th century.

Aim

This experiment attempted to discern various aspects of Indo no Aooni including aroma, flavor, color, satisfaction, vessel design and drinkability.

Method

Materials collected for experiment included: one can of said product for testing, one thirsty researcher, one iPhone for record keeping as well as one room temperature pint-sized glass. Product was kept at approx. 6 degrees Celsius in refrigerator then allowed to sit and warm up to 8 degrees just before tasting. Entire contents were poured into glass and head was measured. Researcher used own larger-than-average proboscis to determine qualities of aroma. Notes were recorded using iPhone Speed Text application. Product was tasted, notes recorded, then remains were quickly disposed of via researcher’s gullet. Can was rinsed and kept on researcher’s desk as reminder to buy more upon leaving laboratory.

Results

The results for Indo no Aooni are shown in table 1 below (italicized portions were taken directly from researcher’s notes and unedited).

Table 1. Characteristics of Indo no Aooni

Characteristic Result
Aroma You are pulled through space and time to rural Flanders in the mid 1500’s. Wandering across a soft landscape of bright green fields of ripening hops, there stands a moss-covered stone monastery whose great oaken doors are unclosed, welcoming visitors. As you pass into the bright courtyard, there is a jolly abbot stirring an enormous vat of wort. You salivate as a light breeze delivers the yeasty smell of rising bread from a nearby window in the monks’ bakery. You feel the warmth of the oven on your face and the sun’s rays on your back.
Flavor Round as the rear-end of a Bavarian grandmother. It mercilessly bites and gallops up into the nose. A sweet reward and a slap of yeast, but a clean bitterness that slides to the sides and back of tongue. Leaves the palate refreshed and begging for more! The foam yields to the lips a delightful stickiness likened to a honeycomb kiss.
Color Rooibos tea steeped for 3 mintues.
Satisfaction All aspects top quality. “Magical” ingredients led to researcher being in danger of losing objectivity nearly jeopardizing experiment.

Researcher recorded a “Buzz” (slight intoxication) and “general well-being feelt [sic]” after ingesting only 150ml of product. High-alcohol content and an unfilled digestive system are ostensibly cause of said reaction.

Vessel design Indigo background with text and image in bone-white (see figure 1). A demon’s fanged grin stands out, expertly configured to be curious balance of both totemic and “manga” design.
Head Upon pouring, reached a towering 4.4cm forming large bubbles at bottom and small thick ones at top. Within 45 seconds reduced to 2.1cm and began to resemble cream. Still had 0.8cm after two minutes and at 3 minutes, one small dollop of foam (0.1cm) remained on side of glass.
Drinkability 8

Conclusion

Virtues of this IPA are not wholly doubted, however, researcher’s unorthodox recordings and accelerated inebriation led vetting team to doubt specifications of experiment. An immediate repeat experiment to confirm findings is proposed as soon as additional supplies of Indo no Aooni are located and purchased.

References

http://www.yonasato.com/main.html

http://www.craftbeers.jp/Aooni-India.html

http://www.craftbeers.jp/Yahhorbluing.html

http://zythophile.wordpress.com/false-ale-quotes/myth-4-george-hodgson-invented-ipa-to-survive-the-long-trip-to-india/

http://www.csse.monash.edu.au/~jwb/cgi-bin/wwwjdic.cgi?1C

Figure 1. Jinro Chamisul Original

Introduction

Korea has a long and proud heritage of making alcoholic beverages, called soju (소주), from rice, but in recent years, rice has been substituted by other starchy products such as potato, sweet potato, tapioca, wheat or barley (Wikipedia, 2010).  Jinro (진로), a distiller in South Korea, was founded in 1924 and is the world’s largest manufacturer of soju.  Jinro’s soju products are sold under the name Chamisul (참 이슬), which, according to Wikipedia (2010) means “real dew”.  The English version of the Jinro website elucidates the method, by which Jinro Chamisul Original (20.1% ABV) is processed, and that the use of “affluent minerals” and the “bamboo charcoal refinement method” results in “a clean taste while boasts biorhythmic cells by providing pure minerals [sic]”.

Aim

This experiment was designed to investigate numerous characteristics of Jinro Chamisul Original soju including, but not limited to, aroma, flavor, colour, satisfaction and vessel design.

Method

A 360 ml bottle of Jinro Chamisul Original soju was sampled from a local bottle store for NZ$8.50.  The bottle was refrigerated for four hours prior to opening to ensure the temperature of the sample did not exceed 6oC.  The bottle cap was removed under controlled conditions.  The contents of the bottle were decanted into a clean shot glass and two small tumblers.  The sample in the shot glass was designated as the control.  Mango juice was added to the first of the other samples (sample 1) and cranberry juice was added to the second other sample (sample 2).  The juices were added in ratios of 3 parts juice to 1 part soju.  Aroma was evaluated by smelling the control.  Flavour was analysed by tasting the control and samples and discussing it with a research collaborator at great length and, subsequently, satisfaction was assessed.  The glass was held up to a standardized light to evaluate the colour of the liquor, and aesthetic aspects of the vessel were considered.

Results

The results for Jinro Chamisul Original soju are shown in table 1 below.

Table 1. Characteristics of Jinro Chamisul Original soju

Characteristic Result
Aroma Industrially distilled spirit with a sweet undertone
Flavour Control: Complex, fruity notes that intensify in sweetness after time

Sample 1: Reminiscent of mango juice with harsh alcohol added

Sample 2: Strong, sour berry notes with alcoholic hints

Colour Control: Clear

Sample 1: Thick, orangey-yellow liquid

Sample 2: Clear and deep red

Satisfaction Control: Strong alcohol content makes it difficult to appreciate the true flavours of the product

Sample 1: Much better than the control

Sample 2: Sour berry and unforgiving alcohol results in a nasty aftertaste

Vessel Design The label (see figure 1) is cream and green and exhibits an image of bamboo, doubtlessly relating to the bamboo charcoal filtration method used in the production.  The front label has an image of the company frog which is cream at room temperature and turns blue when cold (see figures 2 and 3 respectively)
Drinkability Control: 3

Sample 1: 5

Sample 2: 2

Figure 2. Jinro frog at room temperature

Figure 3. Jinro frog at 6 Celsius

Conclusion

Jinro Chamisul Original soju has displayed adaptability by improving on the control sample due to addition of foreign substances in sample 1.  It is not recommended that the product is utilized in close proximity to cranberry juice due to severe interference of flavours.  “Biorhythmic cells” may have contributed to this adjustment in flavour, but it is beyond the scope of the current study to confirm this hypothesis.  The highlight of the Jinro Chamisul Original soju experience was mixing fruit juices with the product in an attempt to enhance the drinkability and trying to make the temperature-sensitive frog label change colour.

References

http://english.jinro.com/product/product_domestic.asp

http://www.jinro.com/product/product_01.asp

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soju

Figure 1. Horoyoi Shiroi Sawaa

Introduction

Suntory, a Japanese beverage company known for its gritty whiskey and premium malt beer, introduced its first “liqueur” to the domestic market on March 9th (Tuesday), 2010. Christened “Horoyoi Shiroi Sawaa” (ほろよい白いサワー) (literal translation: Slightly tipsy white sour), this mildly alcoholic beverage (3.0%ABV) is advertised as “horo-amai, horo-umai” (slightly sweet, slightly delicious). It is currently being sold in supermarkets and convenience stores in 350ml recyclable aluminum cans for 141 yen (tax included). Television commercials (as seen on website) lead researchers to believe this product is marketed to melancholy women and effeminate men who wish to drink alone without the inconvenience of inebriation.

Aim

This experiment attempted to discern various aspects of Horoyoi Shiroi Sawaa including aroma, flavor, color, satisfaction, vessel design and drinkability and to perhaps discover the elusive appeal of low-alcohol, fizzy, sour-milk drinks.

Method

Materials collected for experiment included: one can of said product (see figure 1) for testing, one effeminate man as researcher, one pencil and two scraps of paper for record keeping as well as one sake cup made of faux Edo-style hand-blown glass for receptacle. The liqueur was kept in the coldest part of refrigerator (approx. 4 degrees Celsius) until just before tasting. About 30ml of liquid was poured into glass cup. Researcher wafted the emanation with his left hand breathing in twice. Notes on aroma were recorded. Product was then tasted, notes recorded, tasted again, more notes recorded, then remains were poured down drain. Can was rinsed and disposed of properly with other recyclables.

Results

Results for Horoyoi Shiroi Sawaa are shown in table 1 below.

Table 1. Characteristics for Horoyoi Shiroi Sawaa

Characteristic Result
Aroma First whiff was sharp and quite nearly reached a level of piney citrus not unlike that of some better-known toilet cleaners. The second, deeper inhalation brought promises of fresh cream, white cake-icing and meringue.
Flavor Subtle yet surprisingly complex. Upon first acquaintance, a striking saccharinity jarred the palate, but quickly gave way to a pleasant yoghurty twang. Aftertaste, however, left entire tongue wrecked – likened to gargling a chemical peel. Slight build-up of phlegm at back of throat, possibly caused by allergic reaction, dissipated soon after researcher drank 200ml of water.
Color One part lassi, ten parts soda.
Satisfaction Blend of chemical sweeteners annihilate potentially refreshing libation. No effect from alcohol was observed.
Vessel design White background with text and image in soothing shades of blue. A smattering of polka dots invoke the drink’s slight fizziness. Six type faces and four scripts will addle any reader long before the alcohol will.
Drinkability 2

Conclusion

Although intoxication is guaranteed to be averted, this experiment shows Suntory’s failure in providing a low-alcohol liquid refreshment that pleases effeminate men. Further research is necessary to conclude whether despondent females find it palatable.

References

http://www.suntory.co.jp/news/2010/10639.html

http://www.suntory.co.jp/rtd/horoyoi/

http://www.suntory.com/

Gosser Beer

Figure 1. Gosser Beer

Introduction

Austria evokes images of mountains, Mozart and The Sound of Music, but it is not globally renowned for its beer varieties and production, which may suggest that Gosser’s claim that Gosser Beer is ‘Austria’s finest beer’ may lack substance in the beverage world.  Gosser Beer (Gösser Bier) is a premium-strength (5.2% vol.) lager brewed by Brau Union Österreich in Graz, south-eastern Austria (see Gosser website for further information).  Other beers in the Gosser range include NaturRadler and Gösser Dark.  Gosser Beer is available in 0.33 and 0.5 litre cans and bottles.  The Gosser website is full of beautiful images of natural vistas which leads them to claim that ‘Gösser[‘s] … highest quality, purest nature and living brewing tradition conventionalize Gösser a myth with legendary character’, whatever that means.

Aim

This experiment was designed to investigate numerous characteristics of Gosser Beer including, but not limited to, aroma, flavor, colour, satisfaction and vessel design.

Method

A 0.5 litre bottle (see figure 1)  of Gosser Beer was obtained from a local supermarket.  The cap of the bottle was removed under controlled conditions using a bottle cap leveraging device.  The contents of the bottle were decanted into clean glass vessels.  Aroma was evaluated by smelling the beer.  Flavour was analysed by tasting the beer and discussing it with a research collaborator at great length and, subsequently, satisfaction was assessed.  The glass was held up to a standardized light to evaluate the colour and aesthetic aspects of the vessel were considered.

Results

The results for Gosser Beer are shown in table 1 below.

Table 1. Characteristics of Gosser Beer

Characteristic Result
Aroma Reminiscent of ‘old beer’, perhaps experienced the day after the beer was poured, a hint of citrus with a notes of cigarette ash
Flavour Initially, significant malty flavours which are replaced by a tangy hoppiness
Colour Similar to apple juice yellow which has had no more than 1 medium-sized ice cube melted in it
Satisfaction Served below 6oC, it would provide considerable refreshment on a day which exceeds 24cC
Vessel Design 0.5 litre bottle sits comfortably in the hand.  The label is an unfussy ,lustrous, dark green, gold and white design with classic European elegance
Head A thin , gassy head which disappeared after 156 seconds
Drinkability 6

Conclusion

It is beyond the scope of this experiment to confirm Gosser’s claim that their product is ‘Austria’s finest beer’ (Gosser Beer bottle label, 2010), however, the results indicate that Gosser was certainly inoffensive to the researchers and would be an above average choice on a hot summer’s day when in need of beverage based refreshment.  It is even conceivable that Maria and Captain Von Trapp may have shared a Gosser before fleeing their humble abode.  The highlight of the Gosser experience was the complementary green glass bottle and lustrous green label.

References

Gosser Beer bottle label (2010)

http://www.brauunioninternational.com/default_e.asp

http://www.goesser.com/

Figure 1. Arsenalnoe Strong

Introduction

Arsenalnoe Strong (АРСЕНАЛЬНОЕ КРЕПКОЕ) has only recently arrived on the shelves of New Zealand supermarkets, although this emergence may have occurred earlier in other locations.  Arsenalnoe is a Strong lager-style beer (7.0% ABV) produced by the Baltika breweries in various locations throughout Russia (see Baltika website) and is available in sizes ranging from 0.5 litres to 2.5 litres.  Other beers in the Arsenalnoe range include Gold, Traditional, Classic and Live.  Although the Baltika website provides interesting information about the company’s products, the Arsenalnoe website exhibits an alarming array of information relating to guns and tips on selecting “travel” axes and saws.  Arsenalnoe beers claim to be beers which are “beer with a male character, is brewed for real men who value honour, strength, patriotism, family, Motherland”.

Aim

This experiment was designed to investigate numerous characteristics of Arsenalnoe Strong beer including, but not limited to, aroma, flavor, colour, satisfaction and vessel design.

Method

A 1 litre can of Arsenalnoe Strong (see figure 1) was obtained from a local supermarket.  The top of the can was cleaned under running tap water and opened under controlled conditions.  The contents of the can were decanted into clean glass vessels.  Aroma was evaluated by smelling the beer.  Flavour was analysed by tasting the beer and discussing it with a research collaborator at great length and, subsequently, satisfaction was assessed.  The glass was held up to a standardized light to evaluate the colour and aesthetic aspects of the vessel were considered.

Results

The results for Arsenalnoe Strong are shown in table 1 below.

Table 1. Characteristics of Arsenalnoe Strong

Characteristic Result
Aroma Slightly floral and malty
Flavour Floral with a ‘fuzzy’ feel at the back of your throat.  Not malty, not hoppy – run-of-the-mill
Colour Deep hay with a slightly cloudy tinge
Satisfaction Substantial alcohol content ensures rapid progression towards insobriety
Vessel Design Intimidating 1 litre can with pleasing Cyrillic script and a no-nonsense logo.  The printed ‘rivets’ suggest an industrial background and reinforces its manlyness
Head Forms a ‘fizzy’ head, which disappears within 2 minutes
Drinkability 4

Conclusion

It is clear from the results that Arsenalnoe Strong does indeed have a male character (mainly due to its strength), but could also be enjoyed by females.  The beer has an uncomplicated flavor which would neither excite nor offend the palate.  The highlight of the Arsenalnoe Strong experience, except for the alcohol content, would be the can which could make an interesting talking point for guests stuck for conversation.

References

http://eng.baltika.ru/brand/0/4/arsenalnoe.html

http://guns.arsenalnoe.ru/main.html

Disclaimer:  The researcher and research collaborator do not condone the use of firearms in any situation.

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