Mill St Brewing Original Organic Lager

Today I would like to drink to “soccer,” not the game… the word.

Being a Whitecaps FC season ticket holder, I wanted to relive the thrilling extra-time volley by Eric Hassli, by far the best goal I have seen in person, one which literally gave me goosebumps.

Since it was against Toronto FC, I thought it would be nice to taste a Toronto beer while watching the video. As usual though, I got distracted.

I went to YouTube and scrolled down to the comments.  I found a rather lively debate about our use of the word “soccer” in Canada instead of the word “football.”  Some people (presumably from England) simply cannot get over the fact we use a different word.  They have a point.  After all, some countries, France for example, use the word “football” despite speaking a completely different language altogether.  Why then would an English-speaking country like Canada use a different word?

Welly welly welly well!  Without getting into the history of the origin of the word “soccer,” I would like to take this opportunity to compare the use of the words “soccer” and “football” worldwide.

Let us focus first on people who speak English as their native language. Ninety-nine percent of native English speakers live in one of these nine countries:

  • The USA (225M)
  • England (58M)
  • Canada (18M)
  • Australia (15M)
  • Ireland (4.4M)
  • South Africa (3.6M)
  • New Zealand (3.5M)
  • Phillipines (3.4M)
  • Jamaica (2.6M)
68 million (20%) of native English speakers, (those from England, Ireland, Phillipines and Jamaica) use the word “football.”
266 million (80%) of native English speakers, (USA, Canada, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand) use the word “soccer.”
That means four times as many native English-speaking people use the word “soccer” than use the word “football.”  Compelling indeed.  And yes, I did that math in my head!
Of course, it is more complicated than that.  There are 125 million people in India who speak English as their second language, who would likely call it “football” as well.  Even so, this is still a close race.
People may also make the assumption that non English-speaking countries in Europe use a variation of the word “football” (like fussbol, fuetbol, etc).  In fact, many languages actually use a variation of “soccer,” or a unique name altogether.  Here are a few examples I dug up using a little thing called the ninterwebs:
  • Italian: “Calcio” (translated “kick”)
  • Afrikaans (South Africa): “sokker”
  • Canadian French: “le soccer”
  • Gujarati (India): “sokara”
  • Kannada (India): “sakar”
  • Gaelic: “sacar”
  • Japanese: “sakka”
  • Korean: “chuggu”
  • Latin: “morbi” (?)
  • Polish: “pilka nozna”
  • Slovenian: “nogomet”
  • Swahili: “soka”
  • Tamil (India): “cakkar”
  • Telugu (India): “sakar”
  • Vietnamese: “bong da”
  • Welsh: “pel-droed”
Don’t worry though.  If you come from England and call it “football” we will know what you are talking about (probably).  Just don’t try to make fun of us… (remember… 80%!!).  Also, I mean hey, all Canadian teams are named using “FC” in their names.  We are showing the love!
And if you are Canadian, be proud to call it “Soccer!”
This is a really smooth tasting Canadian Lager, with an alcohol content that is way too low to be great.    See you next Wednesday Toronto FC.
What do you think?  Remember to comment.
Rating 4/5
G1

Mill Street Brewery Original Organic Lager

Kilkenny

Kilkenny is the first Irish beer I have reviewed. It was stored in my in-laws’ fridge for an undetermined amount of time, and they needed someone to get rid of it. The beer itself was full-bodied and delicious. I really liked it.

This beer can contains a widget that creates perfect foam when you open the can. If you aren’t familiar with the widget, it is a plastic ball that shoots nitrogen into the beer, presumably triggered by the change in air pressure when you open the can. Are you kidding me? It’s freaking amazing. I even cut the can open just to take a look at the thing… and it looked, um, like a plastic ball.

I didn’t have the balls (haha) to cut the actual ball open. Cutting things in half makes me a little nervous, ever since I nearly lopped my finger off dissecting a toothpaste pump with a Ginsu knife in 1985. I also didn’t visualize a potential satisfaction, such as the old days when cutting open a golf ball gave you the reward of a giant rubber band that unraveled and caused the ball to bounce magically all over the table creating a beautiful mess.

No mess here, this is a smooth pale ale with a very nice head. You might say it is just a little on the boring side, but in some ways that is good because it has a smooth and refreshing taste for a pale ale. This was served chilled, so tasting it warm may unearth some more intriguing flavours. Unfortunately the major weakness for this drink is the alcohol strength, meaning I can only give this beer a 4.3 out of 5. For what it is, it gets full marks, but it gets a severe deduction due to the reduced alcohol content.

Unibroue Chambly La Fin Du Monde Ale of Lees

Unibroue Chambly “La Fin Du Monde” Ale of Lees

I must say that my visits to the liquor store have been a little disappointing as of late with regards to finding new and exciting beers to drink, this week I have three great beers, and I must say none has made me want to jump to my keyboard more than this one.

My wife was excited by the champagne-like cork on the bottle, and I was equally excited by the champagne like alcohol content of 9 percent.

I am no expert, but perhaps the triple fermentation process has a part in the strong alcohol content. In addition, much like the unique beers from Australia that have in-bottle fermentation, this beer claims to have a yeast residue in the bottom of the bottle… That is if you can reach the bottom of this bottle and still be sober enough to care.

This is a big beer, and drinking one of these gives you the same blood alcohol as 6 typical australian beers. I leave for Australia in a few days. This fact is making me prematurely homesick.

I had fun opening the bottle. Something about the champagne cork makes me think that it is going to explode as soon as I unscrew the twisty wire. It didn’t.

Ehem.. If you dont know how to open a champagne bottle, take notes.

I then draped a towel over it and grasped the cork, tilted the bottle a little, making sure it is not aimed at a person, but instead at a part of the ceiling with no light bulbs. Then I twist the bottle, holding the cork stationary. By repeatedly twisting you allow the pressure to slowly push the cork out of the bottle. I repeated and waited for a pop.

The cork came off, and no pop. But that’s okay, it’s not the end of the world.

Or is it?

This beer is labeled an “ale of lees”. I dont know what that means. I don’t care. It is as though these people just made up a name and said “who gives a shit this beer is so good we can call it whatever we want. ”

This beer is foggy and amber in colour, like a Hefeweizen, only 80 percent better in every way, especially the alcohol content. It has a rich and fruity taste.

This beer is so good that if it was the end of the world, you would be sad to see it go.

Rating=5/5
G1

Unibroue Chambly “La Fin Du Monde” Ale of Lees

La Fin Du Monde