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nice dayA Texan walks into a pub in Ireland and shouts to the crowd of drinkers: “I hear you Irish are a bunch of hard drinkers. I’ll give $500 to anybody in here who can drink ten pints of Guinness back-to-back.” The room goes quiet and no one takes up the offer.

One man leaves. Thirty minutes later he comes back and taps the Texan on the shoulder. “Is your bet still good?” asks the Irishman.

The Texan says yes and asks the bartender to line up ten pints of Guinness. The Irishman sculls all ten with only the odd pause for breath.

The other pub patrons cheer as the Texan sits in amazement.

He gives the Irishman the $500 and says, “If ya don’t mind me askin’, where did you go for that 30 minutes you were gone?”.

The Irishman replies “I had to go to the pub down the street to see if I could do it first”.

Photograph by Tim Boyd

We all know already that climate change will affect everything from food prices to cute baby polar bears.

But now it’s really hitting home, folks. A report from a researcher at the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research in New Zealand suggests that rising temperatures may threaten beer.

An Associated Press report details the findings from climate scientist Jim Salinger, who presented his research at the Institute of Brewing and Distilling’s annual convention in Wellington, New Zealand. The grim results? Climate change may affect the production of malting barley, an ingredient crucial to the tasty beers we all know and love.

If we aren’t careful, the regions in Australia and New Zealand in which malting barley can grow could experience some tragic shrinkage. Salinger’s study didn’t extend beyond those two countries, but he did warn that “similar effects could be expected” across the globe.

“It will mean either there will be pubs without beer or the cost of beer will go up,” the Associated Press article quoted Salinger as saying.

babylon.jpgPart 1 of an occasional series about the historic importance of beer

It was the accepted practice 4000 years ago in ancient Babylonia (modern Iraq) that for a month after the wedding, the bride’s father would supply his son-in-law with all the mead he could drink.

Mead is a honey-based beer, and because the Babylonian calendar followed the moon, this period was called the honey month, which eventually became our word honeymoon.

All prospective fathers-in-law please take note — Shippies is standing by to keep your new son-in-law supplied.

Beers galore


Good beer is the most important tradition at Shippies’ — but we’re anything but tradtional when it comes to serving top-quality beer in peak condition. We use the latest technology to deliver your favorite beer at exactly the right temperature from ice-cased fonts chilled by pressurised super-cooled water.

We pride ourselves on the quality of our Guinness; Carlton Draught is popular with locals and mainland visitors alike; and diet-conscious drinkers go for the low-carbohydrate Pure Blonde lager.


We have the full range of Tasmania’s renowned Cascade beers, brewed only a few kilometres from the pub at the historic Cascade Brewery, established in 1820 by John Degraves.

And we offer Carlton Black as a lighter alternative to Guinness.