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Raise a Glass and Celebrate Two Beer Holidays This Week

America has all sorts of obscure holidays, from Frozen Food Day (March 6) to Walk on Stilts Day (July 27) to Virus Appreciation Day (October 3). Most of these go unnoticed by all save the biggest frozen food lovers and virus appreciators among us. But there are some little-known holidays that deserve much more acclaim—like the anniversary of beer’s return to America.

On April 7, 1933, 14 years after Prohibition began, the sale of beer was once again legal in the U.S. Across the country, people crowded into taverns and restaurants to order a pint—or three—of the long-absent libation. So eager were Americans to wet their whistles again that many had begun packing the streets on the night of April 6, a date known as "New Beer’s Eve," to await the first deliveries. In Chicago, WGN Radio had a correspondent updating listeners as the first barrels made their way from the brewery to locations across the city, while in Baltimore, rain-soaked patrons cheered the delivery trucks as they made their rounds.

As the first barrels rolled in, years of pent-up mischief and merriment were released in a great sudsy flow.

“The downtown section was a Mardi Gras,” The Baltimore Sun wrote of the scene at the time. “Hundreds of horns, whistles, guns and small cannon shrieked and roared while the hands of 'Big Sam'—the City Hall clock—crept past midnight."

Prohibition was still in effect at the time, and only 19 states had agreed to begin selling beer once again. Also, the newly brewed beer was only 3.2 percent alcohol by volume (drinkers would have to wait until the official end of Prohibition on December 5 to get anything above that, including liquor). But this was a major shift for citizens who had spent years ducking into speakeasies and downing "near beer," which had an ABV of just .5 percent, the maximum amount allowed under Prohibition.

Newly elected president Franklin D. Roosevelt had overseen the legal maneuvering behind beer’s reemergence. With the support of a group of anti-Prohibition members of Congress known as “the wets,” he secured passage of the Cullen-Harrison Act, which legalized the sale of low-alcohol beer and wine. In truth, Roosevelt had ridden the wave of public disgust toward Prohibition, which had grown particularly sour during the Great Depression, when many people were in need of a boozy pick-me-up.

The act had an immediate effect on more than just the national morale. Breweries, which previously had to lay off workers and turn to alternative revenue streams like furniture and toy manufacturing, hired back more than 50,000 workers. Brewing cities like Milwaukee, St. Louis, and Chicago benefited, and throughout the country, sales of beer and wine gave businesses a much-needed shot in the arm. Within the first two days of beer's reemergence, more than $25 million flowed into breweries and related businesses.

Today, beer continues to be a commercial juggernaut, with yearly sales topping $105 billion. And it all started—or re-started—on a boozy April 7 more than 80 years ago. So spend today picking out your favorite brew so that tomorrow you can raise a glass to National Beer Day. As FDR said at the time, “I think this would be a very good time for a beer.”

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New Pop Chart Lab Poster Is a Boozy Blueprint For Making Classic Cocktails
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Pop Chart Lab's posters combine design with data, and their latest offering—a full breakdown of the ingredients in 60 classic cocktails—is no exception. From the exact ratio of gin and tonic that should go into a G & T (2 ounces and 4 ounces, respectively) to the garnishes you'll need to make a proper Tom Collins (a maraschino cherry and a lemon twist), the 3-foot-by-2-foot "Constitutions of Classic Cocktails" artwork teaches mixology basics you'd typically learn in bartending school, sans tuition fee.

In addition to mainstays like the Negroni and the Whiskey Sour, the poster also includes relatively obscure drinks (ever heard of the Golden Dawn, or the Journalist?), which you can attempt after drinking your way through your favorite concoctions. Before you know it, you'll be explaining to your friends the intricacies of why you should stir martinis instead of shaking them (sorry, James Bond), or the difference between a highball and a Collins glass. Bottoms up!

"Constitutions of Classic Cocktails" costs $37, and is currently available for pre-order. Shipping begins on Friday, October 20, 2017. (To see the poster's details up close, visit Pop Chart Lab's website and click on the diagram.)

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Attention Beer Lovers: A London Brewery Is Hiring a Professional Taste-Tester
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Beer lovers aren’t given many chances to discuss their passion for imbibing at job interviews. But a new open position at London's Meantime Brewing Company lists that expertise as one of the top qualifications. As Fortune reports, the brewery is seeking a professional beer taster to help improve its products.

The brewery’s part-time employee will “join the panel brewers as they taste, discuss, and pass opinion on a range of different beers,” according to the job listing on LinkedIn. On top of steady access to free booze three hours a week, the taster will receive a competitive salary “with beer benefits.” As the description reads: “Yes, this could just be the best job in the world.”

Meantime isn’t just considering any casual beer drinker for the role. Their ideal candidate will have a precise palate that can distinguish “chocolate malt from dark malt” and “Fuggles from Cascade hops.” They will also have an understanding of global consumer markets, a functioning knowledge of English, and an extensive beer vocabulary. The brewery is located in the London borough of Greenwich, so applicants who aren’t local should be willing to relocate.

Founded in 1999, the Meantime Brewing Company made its name on the beer scene with signature beverages like their London Lager, London Pale Ale, and Yakima Red. If you’re interested in joining the team, post 30 words on your LinkedIn profile explaining why you deserve the gig, along with any photos or videos that may help your case, with the hashtag #pickmemeantime. The company will narrow down the pool to three candidates for an in-person beer tasting before deciding their top pick. Meanwhile, you can prepare for the job by brushing up on your beer facts.

[h/t Fortune]

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