How Did Lager Come to Be, Anyway?

LagerAfter searching for the missing yeast species that is responsible for the crisp, cold-brewed and stored lager, scientists have finally found the elusive organism. Their investigation lasted about five years, finally ending on an Argentinian beech tree. []

The newly discovered wild yeast strain is called Saccharomyces eubayanus and, when hybridized with S. cerevisae, the organism created can ferment at lower temperatures, perfect for lagering. The found strain is 99.5% identical to the non-ale side of the S. pastorianus genome, proposing it to indeed be the long lost ancestor.

Scientists are still uncertain as to how S. eubayanus made its way 8,000 miles from Patagonia to Germany, but if I can be so bold as to speak for them and those of us invested in beer, I’m glad it did.


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