St. Patrick’s Day Snake Oil

Snake Oil

Green beer for St. Patrick’s day? Oh come on, it’s so gimmicky, the sort of thing only “Irish” Chicagoans and that tat shop at the bottom of Grafton st. would go in for. Unfortunately I can’t take this thing seriously, at best it’s a cynical marketing exercise where every two-bit Councillor in the country and his wife (literally) go on a junket to America and elsewhere to try to persuade the world how great we are, all expenses paid, after all, it’s official business! At worst, it’s a drunken orgy of violence and public sex, fingers being bitten off, 10 year olds swinging bottles of hooch, record amounts of blood let, cocaine and racial violence abound!

In any case, let’s not forget that what we are “celebrating” here is the eventual encroachment of a sprawling Greco-Roman culture on Ireland, in the form of Christianity. Furthermore, what we have is a Welsh Christian Slave-child, who returns to this proud and happy little pagan island, and pulls one of the fastest metaphysical tricks in recorded history, convincing the great and the good that the absurd and inscrutable Christian doctrine of the Trinity makes even vague sense, by means of a rather poor analogy with a defenseless shamrock. And to add insult to injury, as if co-opting our natural flora as a pawn in Rome’s play for world-domination wasn’t enough, this Welshman seriously depleted our natural fauna too, driving the much maligned snake into the sea.

So, to bear witness to, lament and commemorate both the sleight-of-hand shamrock-aided con-job that was the christianisation of poor little Ireland, the cynical modern marketing device it has become, and the appalling and horrific Serpenticide that kicked it all off, I have created “St. Patrick’s Day Snake Oil”.

It’s a fairly simple blonde ale, quite yellow to begin with (that was important) with a nice hoppy flavour coming from the East Kent Goldings hops. To colour it I used green food colouring, I first tested a small batch of it drop by drop. I determined that I needed 3 drops per 100ml. I bottled in Proseco style bottles (75cl) so I used 20 drops per bottle. This was a little too much actually, I would use maybe 80% in future, since it turned out a little dark. Anyway, to Trickery, and the demise of the Evil Serpent, cheers!



Filed under Beer, Recipe

12 responses to “St. Patrick’s Day Snake Oil

  1. kev

    “pulls one of the fastest metaphysical tricks in recoded [sic] history”

    is there a top 5 fastest metaphysical tricks?

    • stoutfellow

      [sic] yerself, smartarse. Of course there’s a top five metaphysical sneaky moves, there’s a top five everything. Off the top of my head we have Descartes’ Cogito, Plato’s proof of the soul’s immortality, the trinity, Anselm’s ontological argument, and perhaps our very own doctrine of mental reservation.

      • Dr Jacoby

        Surely the tortoise should be included on any such list. Achilles is still chasing it…

  2. Nice job on the beer, but your historical analysis is a bit, well, primary school. Have a look at this piece of recent scholarship for a better picture of Patrick’s legacy.

    • stoutfellow

      Well I liked to think of it as more unfiltered bile than historical analysis, and as for being primary school, well, it is a children’s story. yes yes you go into more detail and whatever, but at base it’s still just a marketing exercise. I always felt for poor old brigid and columba. they seemed like more fun. Pagans and beer drinkers.

  3. kev

    continuing the the etymology discussion



    • adverb (after a copied or quoted word that appears odd or wrong) written exactly as it stands in the original.

    — ORIGIN Latin, ‘so, thus’.

  4. kenanddot

    Re: sic
    Is there any connection with our own word ‘such’?

  5. I think the snakes being driven out is a metaphor for ‘driving out paganism’

    Anyway over here in Canada (as well as the US) all the beer is died green with some delightful chemical on St. Patricks day (BTW I’m no fun)

    • stoutfellow

      yeah it’s a fairly abusive metaphor. Still we must have had snakes or the people wouldn’t know what he was on about? I’m not exactly sure what’s in my green food colouring, it’s not exactly reinheitsgebot. I have heard that the chicago folk dye their river green, but I was there in September one year and it was just about the greenest river I had ever seen naturally anyway!

  6. I’ve neglected to read this blog in a while and I’ve missed loads of great posts! So I’ve had an enjoyable while reading back over them all. I’m loving the brewing and the exploits involving bread and ham. I won’t forget to check for new posts in future.

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