Tuesday, December 06, 2005

chhota bottle mystery

Can anyone explain why the small bottles of Kingfisher taste better than the big ones? My theory is that it has something to do with a preservative that is legal (or acceptable to the consumer) in India but not in the export market, and Kingfisher has retooled its distribution chain to give India, as well as phoren, access to the chhota bottles without changing the recipe.

After a blind taste test, I'm going to have to declare Kingfisher Pints my new beer of choice. They cost twice as much per volume (Rs. 20 for half as much beer as the Rs. 30, 650 ml bottle) but about the same as brewed-in-India Foster's and Castle, both of which have a strange honey-like flavor I am also convinced is preservative-related. Is this the ubiquitous glycerine that I hear so much about?

Speaking of which, can anyone actually testify that he has performed the underwater-bottle-opening ritual that is reputed to get rid of the glycerine? Several people have described it to me, but all my efforts have resulted in a tub full of beer-flavored water and several half-empty bottles, so that I have begun to suspect that "the method" is nothing more than an urban legend. But whoever heard of an urban legend that encourages you to waste beer?