Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Dharma Beer

Fans of ABC's LOST know that the Dharma Initiative, a sorta-benevolent-but-still-kinda-shady research organization that was wiped out by The Others, had its own brand of supplies. From peanut butter to whisky, everyone had their Dharma-brand rations.

Memorably discovered by Sawyer, Jin, and Hurley, Dharma also had its own beer. And in anticipation of LOST this evening, I started to think: what kind of beer is this "Dharma Barley-Flavored Drink?"

First, the label offers a few clues: It's 5% alcohol by volume, so it's not a barleywine, doppelbock, or any other extra-strength beer. It's also not on the lower end, say like a Guinness Draft or a Miller Lite. "Barley-flavored" isn't much help, since all but the small category of gluten-free beers use malted barley as a large portion of their grain bill. It doesn't stipulate ale or lager, either.

It comes in both bottles and cans, so it's likely pasteurized and force-carbonated. It's not bottle-conditioned and there are no live yeast in the beer. The bottles are amber-colored, so it is brewed with real hops whose acids can be damaged by exposure to light (this causes "skunking").

Personally, if I were on a tropical island, I'd prefer a crisp, lightly fruity beer like a Corona or a subtle pale ale. A nice tart wheat would be good after a long day of number-entering as well.

Of course, it's probably just your average pale American Lager. In order to entice the most folks onto the island, you'd have to keep it generic and familiar.