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Beer Inspired By ‘The Planets’ Will Soon Be Released By Spacey Michigan Brewery

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celestial suds beerBooze! Booze! Booze! We’re used to alcohol artists creating interesting potables for fictional properties like Star Trek, and we’ve seen some other pretty nifty space-based alcohol in the past few years. But I think I’m most interested in the upcoming promotion from the Michigan-based Bell’s Brewery, which will be rolling out a line of varied beers inspired by the orchestral suite “The Planets,” from English composer Gustav Holst. Doing a keg stand for Jupiter just feels natural, doesn’t it?

Here’s how brewery founder Larry Bell is rolling the products out, and what we can expect from each beer. Starting in August, Bell’s will put out one beer every two months, ending in July 2015. You’ll be able to find the goods in both six-packs and on draft, but only if you live within the 20-state distribution zone that Bell’s works with. (That means almost the entire east coast, D.C. included, plus some northern states and Arizona and parts of Southern California.) And if you’re wondering why there isn’t an Earth beer, that’s because our own planet wasn’t included in the suite; besides, almost every beer on Earth is inspired by Earth.

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Think You Know Your Beer? The Electronic Tongue Has You Beat

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electronic tongueI used to be a bartender and have tasted (and worn) my fair share of beer. Though, I’ve never had drone delivery me a beer, or moon beer, I still have some beer-drinking days left in me, so you never know. While I’m no connoisseur, I’m pretty sure I could distinguish between a pale ale and an amber ale, or between a Guinness and a Murphy’s (I learned to drink in Ireland) while blind-folded. I find it kind of surprising that no college drinking games tested that theory. Or maybe I was just waiting for technology to catch up to me, which it now has—there’s an electronic tongue that can tell a hefeweizen from a pilsner from a lager.

Researchers at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (a name that makes the university itself sound like a robot) developed the electronic tongue. They performed a taste study and published their results in Food Chemistry. Their data includes the impressive performance of The Tongue, which could successfully tell the difference between types of beers 82% of the time. I’m sure that’s better than I could do, but that’s only because The Tongue doesn’t get drunk at the same time it tastes. The upshot is that such a device could perform quality control for food and beverage companies. This is one of those jobs that it seems robots will be taking from humans, but I can see the advantages. The Tongue can performs taste tests any time day or night. It doesn’t guard its weekends and never throws up, no matter how nasty an experimental brew.

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Beer By Drone? Not If The FAA Has Anything To Say About It

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Lakemaid beer droneLakemaid Beer, a Minnesota brewery, has been doing a great service for ice fishermen: it’s been delivering them beer — by drone. The fishermen (and women) stay in shacks on Mille Lacs Lake, and given where they are and what they’re doing, I’m guessing it’s pretty darn easy to run out of beer. But there aren’t any liquor stores nearby, so what are thirsty fishermen to do? Well, they call up Lakemaid, give the brewery their coordinates, and order some beer for delivery. Way to show Amazon how it’s done!

Sadly, the FAA caught wind of the operation after Lakemaid uploaded the video below, which went viral almost immediately, and shut down the operation. The FAA currently doesn’t have rules and regulations in place to govern commercial drones, which is why Amazon, among others, has publicized the idea but hasn’t done much more. The FAA plans on releasing the legislation sometime around 2015, but it might take a couple years beyond that before we actually see commercial drones making deliveries. Right now, only hobbyists can fly drones, and the drones have to be small (less than 55 pounds). Those drones can’t be for profit, and the amateur pilots can only fly them over non-populated areas.

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Dehydrated? Drink Coffee.

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coffeeThanks for legitimizing my vices, science! In addition to showing that alcohol consumption can be good for us by boosting the immune system’s response to vaccines, among other things, a new study from England’s University of Birmingham suggests drinking coffee will keep us as hydrated as drinking water. Hang on a second while I get myself a second cup of Joe, and then I’ll tell you the details.

We’ve all heard for so long that there’s no substitute to water when it comes to what our bodies need, and by and large, that seems to be true. Other drinks have been vilified (some probably rightly so), downsized, and generally discouraged. But coffee isn’t a high-fructose-corn-syrup-infused bomb (unless you do really weird things to your java), and we’ve all made it by pouring a bunch of water into a coffee maker — so why wouldn’t it be hydrating?

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Beer Guzzling Zombies Stalk The Band Red Fang In Their Latest Video

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Portland heavy metal band Red Fang are known for creating songs that infuse chunky guitar riffs with agreeable stoner grooves that are almost impossible to dislike if you’re a rock fan in general. But the band is arguably more famous for the fun and ridiculously over-the-top music videos they put out with their singles. And they’ve nearly upped the ante with their latest video for “Blood Like Cream,” which features a unique spin on zombie culture. These walking deadbeats aren’t at all interested in eating people’s brains or flesh. They want all the beer. Nooooo!!!

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An 11-Year-Old Made A Brewery For Use Aboard The ISS

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michal-bodzianowski-astronaut-breweryThey say kids are growing up faster these days. There may be no better example of that than 11-year-old Michal Bodzianowski, who created a micro-microbrewery for a project at the Highland Ranch, Colorado STEM School and Academy. The project was so impressive that the National Center for Earth and Space Science Education’s Student Spaceflight Experiments Program has awarded it the green light to blast into space in December for use aboard the ISS.

Bodzianowski says that while many people think of beer as a party drink, it also has medicinal properties—I think he’s been reading a few “Guinness is good for you” posters, or maybe he read the GFR post about hydrating beer. Whatever his motivations, Bodzianowski developed a brewery that can fit into a 6-inch test tube and contains the individual ingredients one would use to make beer, including yeast, water, and malted barley. Hey kid—you forgot the moon dust!