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Michael Jackson's Beer Companion: Revised And Updated Hardcover – February 27, 2000


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Hardcover, February 27, 2000
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 255 pages
  • Publisher: Courage Books; 2 edition (February 27, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0762407727
  • ISBN-13: 978-0762407729
  • Product Dimensions: 10.3 x 7.7 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,268,975 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

"Beer deserves to be treated as a civilized drink; it may even have been the cause of civilization." Jackson ( The New World Guide to Beer ) here presents a knowledgeable and civilized survey of the various and sundry beers imbibed around the globe. You'll learn, for example, that Ninkasi was a Sumerian goddess of brewing, and that malt-making may be as much as 4000 years old. He explains what fruit beers are ("A beer made with fruit sounds like a contradiction. Surely it is a wine?"), and defines lagers, ales, porters, wheat beers and more; discusses and rates the beers of assorted nations; and suggests what foods go well with which beers. Jackson is excellent at combining historical detail with current information about the beers and brewers in question; his organization is logical and accessible. Beautifully photographed and designed for sustained browsing as well as authoritative reference, this book will appeal to both beer tyros and more sophisticated tipplers. Photos.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Even a non-believer might learn a thing or two from this book.
George Schaefer
He provides detailed descriptions of the world's great beer styles as well as information on the breweries that produce these beers.
mea@hopewell.k12.pa.us
Author Michael Jackson is probably my favorite beer writer and critic.
Bryan Carey

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Hoppy Doppelrocket on February 6, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Michael Jackson has long been considered one of (if not the) world's foremost experts on beer (so much so that those who love beer think of this Michael long before the putative Pop King Michael). And this book only adds to that well-deserved reputation.
Jackson's "Beer Companion" is loaded with color photos of many beer styles, labels, breweries, and watering holes and gives a decent history of the various brewing styles and tastes (very fascinating!). Mr. Jackson provides advice for what beers go with what foods (and it does matter) and suggests some good drinking establishments (and breweries) to visit if you're a world traveler. A good drinking companion indeed. Unfortunately, the book is somewhat large (and annoying to travel with) so you may be better off reading it first, taking some notes, and bringing the (also essential) Pocket Beer Guide with you instead. Enjoy.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By George Schaefer on October 21, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I began my own personal journey into good beer back when Samuel Adams Lager was considered an exotic option to Heineken. I, along with many of my friends, became curious about investigating this exciting new angle to drinking beer. We all learned that there is more to drinking beer than just foolishly slurping Budweiser. One of the best sources for learning about beer styles and great beers brewed around the world is reading the books of Michael Jackson, British writer not American singer. Luckily, he removes one glove long enough to write these books. If you want to learn about beer, this is a very good resource. In my travels around America and the world, I seek out beers he recommends. This book is a primer on the many splenid styles of beer. There is a difference between an India Pale Ale and a Czech pilsner. He will point out several classic examples of each style he documents. I learned about the traditions of the countries that have great brewing histories. Beer is not just for breakfast anymore and Michael Jackson is one of the leaders in spreading the good word. His poetic prose and vast knowledge of the subject make for a fascinating read. Even a non-believer might learn a thing or two from this book. From Abbey doubles to Extra Special Bitters to Berliner weissebiers, this book has it all.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 2, 1997
Format: Hardcover
Jackson was among the first (if not the first) authors to write a guidebook to beer and he remains the best. The Beer Companion is impeccably researched and comprehensive. Jackson's colorful writing style, with occasional touches of wry humor, gets the reader through 280 pages on beer without ever sounding repetitive. In addition, the book contains copious photographs and would look good on anyone's coffee table.

Although it covers a lot of the same ground as Jackson's earlier World Guide to Beer, it is more up-to-date and easier to read. Unlike the World Guide, which was organized by country, the Beer Companion features chapters on each of the world's great beer styles. This makes it a more usable reference for us amatuer brewers.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Bryan Carey VINE VOICE on November 19, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Author Michael Jackson is probably my favorite beer writer and critic. He has traveled all over America and the world, attending events, visiting breweries, and tasting beer. He has extensive knowledge on the subject of beer and he shares that knowledge in this book.
Jackson writes this book in a very simple, easy to understand manner. He doesn't use long words that require the use of a dictionary to understand. He keeps it simple while he educates the reader sbout the subject of beer. He begins by talking about the history of the world's greatest beverage, from the ancient days when beer was discovered all the way to the present day and the resurgence of craft- brewing. He talks about the various ingredients used in beer and explains how best to match beer with food. The bulk of the book covers each individual style of beer, with facts, trivia, and full- color photographs of beer labels, breweries, and other beer- related things.
Speaking of the photography, I found that it really adds to the enjoyment and understanding of the subject matter. It would not be very exciting to read a book about beer that contained nothing but text. The pictures really make a difference with this type of book. They keep the reader entertained and informed about different aspects of beer and the brewing industry.
Overall, this is one of the best books on beer I have ever read. Grab a copy and see for yourself how much there is to know and love about the greatest beverage known to man- beer!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By mark.a.bayer@boeing.com on July 20, 1999
Format: Hardcover
michael jackson has produced a guide to the beer styles of the world that reads easily and is nice to look at. the photography in this book makes it very accessible to newbie beer lovers, while the content makes for interesting reading. this is not a "how to brew" book; it is a book about classic beer styles and the breweries that produce them. jackson possesses a duality of talent that surpasses everyone else in his field: his experienced palate and his extraordinary descriptive writing skills. his tasting notes are simply excellent. a very good book from the man who has visited more breweries than anyone else in the world.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By AC on September 12, 2005
Format: Hardcover
As a homebrewer, I found this book to be very helpful in creating recipes for various styles of beer. He goes into good detail about them and provides descriptions of a few primary examples of styles. If I have any criticism it would be that I would have done away with the "cooking with beer" articles at the end of the book (you can find better and more comprehensive info elsewhere) and instead added more info about obscure beer styles such as American Stock Ale, Baltic Porter, Kellerbier, Finnish Sahti, Kentucky Common Beer, etc.
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