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Forbidden Beer

What is the name of the kind of beer served that is so high in alcohol content that it's rumoured to make you angry and fight? I saw this crawl on one of Rick's shows and can't find it or the name. It's not Stella, the pub master said it was a nickname for this kind of beer. And that his pub DID serve it and they both laughed. I can't for the LIFE of me remember the word for it! HELP!

Posted by
9110 posts

Probably Scrumpy, a cider mostly from the West Country, but the potency and fighting business is another urban myth.

It's runs less than ten percent alcohol by volume - - vodka is forty or fifty.

Bulmers (Herefordshire) sells it, I think,. They're either owned by Henikens or by everwho owns them.

It tastes like crap.

Actually, I've heard the story applied to all cider in general, Scrumpy is just the worst tasting of the lot. Just about any pub has a cider handle of some kind.

Posted by
5366 posts

You may be talking about a drink called a "Snakebite". It's a mix of Cider and Beer, mostly cider, and usually a higher ABV beer.

You can probably find all kinds of theories and stories on the web regarding it, most attesting to some type of chemical reaction or other nonsense. My own unsubstantiated theory is that the taste is just sweet and smooth, encouraging you to just drink more...equating crazy with drunk leading to fighting and arguing.

I think the actual "banning" is more story than fact and you can probably have one served many places.

Posted by
4671 posts

Supermarkets in some towns are banned from selling ultra-strong lagers, but it's less due to fighting than to dissuade skid row drunks from congregating in the area.

Posted by
743 posts

Might be "wreck the hoose ,juice"
Buckfast tonic....notorious in West central scotland

Posted by
70 posts

Bulmers, Strongbow, Magners and other mass-produced brands are all boggo-standard pub ciders; calling any of them scrumpy is like calling a sales-rep Mondeo a monster truck. Fine in their place but give me a Westons vintage or Rattler any day.
It is possible to get scrumpy legit if you look hard enough but most is illegal. But not because of strength - because it's undeclared and no tax has been paid. And at 6-8% abv, it may be 1/5th the strength of spirits but it takes a special kind of nutter to neck a pint of vodka whereas a gallon jug of scrumpy goes down very easy. If you don't take care you'll need pouring into a cab at chucking out!
If you find proper under-the-bar scrumpy stay near the loo the next day though. It'll be rough as, fermented in a plastic bin in the back of the barn where the vet won't see it, and unpasteurized. This will likely give newbies a certain amount of - how shall I put this - 'gastric distress'...

Posted by
149 posts

Here's a transcript from the Heart of England and South Wales episode:

Rick: You know, I'd love a scrumpy, do you have scrumpy here?
Bartender: We certainly have.
Rick: Why don't many pubs actually serve this farmhouse cider?
Customer: Makes people fight.
Rick: Is that right, changes the clientele?
Customer: It makes them very angry. If you're going to be that way, inclined, if you're going to be violent it'll make you that way.
Rick: This brings out the violence in a person inclined to violence.
Customer: No question about that.
Rick: I'm a lover, not a fighter.
Customer: There you go, too much of that and you won't be.*

A friend brewed a batch and we called it fightin' juice.