Always a problem, right? Try a lidded cup. And don’t drink near open water.
Not really. We’re talking about isinglass – the missing ingredient that allows us to describe our beer as vegan.
Isinglass is basically fish bladders, and whether you’re vegan or not you’d have to admit that it sounds fairly disgusting. Check this description, from American Craft Beer;
“When macerated and dissolved for several weeks in dilute food-grade acids, they form a turbid, colorless, viscous solution largely made up of the protein collagen.”
Mmm. Make mine a double.
Why the hell are there fish in my beer?
Isinglass is what’s known as a fining agent. It allows brewers to filter out excess yeast, and makes the liquid appear clearer. The isinglass bonds with the yeast, and drags it down to the bottom of the fermenter, where it’s easily extracted.
As the world moves towards a more plant-based diet, the use of isinglass (and other animal -derived fining agents like gelatin) is on the wane. With the availability of vegan fining alternatives like Irish Moss (seaweed, basically), there’s no reason for anyone to be selling fish beer any more.
Also…why does it need to be clear? Since the craft beer revolution, people are a lot less bothered about whether their beer is transparent or not. They’re more concerned about how it tastes. There’s plenty of beers available with ‘hazy’ in the name, and they seem to be doing alright.
Here at UNLTD, we’re not fans of the fish mash. Our brewing process and ingredients are 100% plant-based, and both of our award-winning low-calorie beers contain 33% of your daily recommended intake of Vitamin B12 - so if you’re doing the vegan thing, sipping a cold one is actually ‘doctor’s orders’ now. Nice to know.