hist-brewing: Godisgood

JazzboBob at aol.com JazzboBob at aol.com
Wed May 12 07:08:03 PDT 1999

In a message dated 5/12/99 7:10:19 AM Eastern Daylight Time, 
owner-hist-brewing-digest at rt.com writes:

 Jim writes:
 >As I understand, even without Pasteur's knowledge of yeast (1850-60's),
 >brewers knew  they needed to innoculate new wort with the "froth" of
 >fermenting good beer. Can someone tell me what this froth and process of
 >pitching it were called?  Thanks....
 I've read it referred to as "Godisgood."
Godisgood is an early name given to yeast by English brewers who did not 
understand its chemistry and workings but guessed that it was responsible for 
frementation.  It is also spelled Godesgood; goddisgood.  They knew from 
experince to repitch the good whitish stuff from one batch to the next.
Barm is the liquid yeast appearing as froth on fermenting beer.  Pitching or 
adding yeast was sometimes called "barm to". 
Yeast was first viewed under a miroscope in 1680 by the Dutch scientist 
Antonie van Leeuwenhoek and later, in 1867, Louis Pasteur,  (Etudes sur le 
vin, 1866; Etudes sur la biere, 1876),  discovered that yeast cells lack 
chlorophyl and that they could develop only in an environment containing both 
nitrogen and carbon.

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