Kvass - what style?

Reads 2565 • Replies 27 • Started Wednesday, December 14, 2016 6:54:24 AM CT

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SilkTork
beers 6590 º places 106 º 13:15 Mon 12/19/2016

Originally posted by FatPhil
Originally posted by Sigmund
Kvass is not a beer at all. Most commercial examples are sugary soft drinks (soda / pop) with a bread content about 0.6% or something. So I think it really does not belong here at all - but as it is here already, and probably will stay, kvass should have a category of its own, like the other non-beer categories: cider, perry, mead and sake. Kvass has absolutely nada in common with Danish hvidtøl.


Let me paraphrase your post:
I’ve never had a real kvass, but I want to pontificate on the internet about it regardless.



I think kvass has a continuum which goes from a sweet nonalcohol drink to the beer which is related to the first beers ever made, so there is a difficulty in classifying it.

I revere kvass as a historical artefact. It is the first, and in many regards the only true beer. It is without a doubt the oldest beer style. I also revere kvass as something anyone can make right now in their own kitchen with ingredients in their cupboard. I like the ease of that. The folk connection to the people. Its so far removed from the laboratory beers made in big factories which are then filtered, pasteurised, and force-carbonated. Some of those resulting drinks, such as pale lager or anything by BrewDog, are so far removed from the beer mankind has drink for millennium that perhaps we should create a special non-beer category for them! ;-)

 
SilkTork
beers 6590 º places 106 º 13:18 Mon 12/19/2016

Originally posted by ContemplateBeer
This is a perfect example of why we should go to "broad category-style tag" system that’s already partially in place:

Category (not style): Traditional Ale
Style#: Kvass


Nice.

 
martjoobolut
beers 9476 º places 280 º 15:12 Mon 12/19/2016

Originally posted by Oakes
Without looking at any particular examples:

1) That sounds like a lot of kvass in the DB - I’ll bet there’s ones that shouldn’t be here. The stuff under 1% shouldn’t be listed, as it is a soft drink (and viewed as such in its markets). I drink kvas regularly in ex-USSR countries, and wouldn’t list very many of the ones I’ve had.

2) Assuming I’m wrong and everything listed should be listed, we should be consistent in our
placement

3) Most kvass fits better in "low alcohol" than traditional, mostly because most kvass is not made using any sort of traditional methods. Most of it is quite industrial.

4) Definitely willing to accept Traditional Ale for anything made using traditional methods. I assume there’s at least of few of these out there. These would be exceptions.

That’s a pretty unscientific take, but the OP is right, we should be consistent as reasonable in our treatment of kvas.

And yes, cross-listing of styles/categories makes a lot of sense. Could be 25-30% of listings that you could cross-list.

There are some kvass in DB that shouldn’t be there, but 1% rule is totally random. The alcohol percentage has more to do with the local tax laws than actual brewing process. I.e. in Estonia less than 1.2% ABV drinks are not considered alcohol (excluding beer, beer above 0.5% is considered an alcoholic beverage). So kvass can go up to 1.2% without being taxed as alcohol. I think for RB purposes it only matters if it’s fermented or not. But then the problems are the same as the problems with ciders, sometimes it’s not clear if it’s fermented or not. When it’s clear that it’s not fermented, it should be unrateable.
Most locals from the kvass brewing tradition countries would say kvass is a low alcohol drink. So RB’s "low alcohol" is more fitting, although it should have its own category (it’s well defined style). Locals don’t call kvass a beer/ale. Kvass is kvass, beer is beer (even one of our ministers said that, after he was asked if kvass over 0.5% ABV should be taxed as a beer).

 
peepthesot
beers 10 º places 6 º 23:23 Mon 12/19/2016

Originally posted by omhper
Originally posted by peepthesot

LOL. Many people feel that the "existing guidelines" _in general_ have very little meaning as well (and I tend to agree). Those guidelines were written for judging homebrew, and have little relevance to commercial beer.


LOL indeed. Those guidelined were written by Oakes for the exact purpose of determining what beers goes where on Ratebeer.


Fair enough...I assumed thet the "guidlines" mentioned were the BJCP’s ridiculously bloated (and often outright wrongheaded" "guidelines" (which actually _were_ designed specifically for amateur homebrew contest judging).

 
Marduk
beers 12428 º places 471 º 05:05 Tue 12/20/2016

From where do people take the idea that kvass is very very sweet beverage? It can be sweet, but not necessarily. Depend where you draw the line, but the ones I prefer in hot summer day, slightly sourish ones, are not even half as sweet as typical DIPA.
And as martjoobolut said: kvass is kvass and beer is beer. As simple as that.

 
Marko
beers 8752 º places 450 º 05:10 Tue 12/20/2016

Originally posted by martjoobolut
Originally posted by Oakes
Without looking at any particular examples:

1) That sounds like a lot of kvass in the DB - I’ll bet there’s ones that shouldn’t be here. The stuff under 1% shouldn’t be listed, as it is a soft drink (and viewed as such in its markets). I drink kvas regularly in ex-USSR countries, and wouldn’t list very many of the ones I’ve had.

2) Assuming I’m wrong and everything listed should be listed, we should be consistent in our
placement

3) Most kvass fits better in "low alcohol" than traditional, mostly because most kvass is not made using any sort of traditional methods. Most of it is quite industrial.

4) Definitely willing to accept Traditional Ale for anything made using traditional methods. I assume there’s at least of few of these out there. These would be exceptions.

That’s a pretty unscientific take, but the OP is right, we should be consistent as reasonable in our treatment of kvas.

And yes, cross-listing of styles/categories makes a lot of sense. Could be 25-30% of listings that you could cross-list.

There are some kvass in DB that shouldn’t be there, but 1% rule is totally random. The alcohol percentage has more to do with the local tax laws than actual brewing process. I.e. in Estonia less than 1.2% ABV drinks are not considered alcohol (excluding beer, beer above 0.5% is considered an alcoholic beverage). So kvass can go up to 1.2% without being taxed as alcohol. I think for RB purposes it only matters if it’s fermented or not. But then the problems are the same as the problems with ciders, sometimes it’s not clear if it’s fermented or not. When it’s clear that it’s not fermented, it should be unrateable.
Most locals from the kvass brewing tradition countries would say kvass is a low alcohol drink. So RB’s "low alcohol" is more fitting, although it should have its own category (it’s well defined style). Locals don’t call kvass a beer/ale. Kvass is kvass, beer is beer (even one of our ministers said that, after he was asked if kvass over 0.5% ABV should be taxed as a beer).


Completely agreed.

Kvass should be separated as a separate "style". Its presence is strong enough and widespread enough to warrant that.

 
Marko
beers 8752 º places 450 º 09:14 Tue 12/20/2016

Originally posted by Marduk
From where do people take the idea that kvass is very very sweet beverage? It can be sweet, but not necessarily. Depend where you draw the line, but the ones I prefer in hot summer day, slightly sourish ones, are not even half as sweet as typical DIPA.
And as martjoobolut said: kvass is kvass and beer is beer. As simple as that.


From the Coca Cola-made Estonian ones and from those in Russian stores all over Europe.