World records are all about extremes. World Beer Records may be considered even more extreme, because they are related to an external substance (beer) that inspires the most imaginative innovation in the human brain.
Recent records of these extremes have been recorded by Guinness World Records, but there are some that existed before the record books were kept. Others are not recognized because the category is too small to be recordable. In any event, they enhance our lives with a bit of diversion, while putting smiles on countless faces.
Extreme World Beer Records
Strongest Beer in the World – Since 2002, the Guinness Book of World Records has listed Samuel Adams as brewing the strongest beer in the world. Utopias, brewed by Boston Beer Company, Boston, Massachusetts, USA, holds the current record, as a 50 proof beer, having 25.0% alcohol by volume.
World’s Strongest Dark Beer – Dogfish Head World Wide Stout, brewed by Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, Delaware, USA, with an ABV of 18.0%.
World’s Strongest Bottle Conditioned Beer – Dogfish Head Olde School Barley Wine, brewed by Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, Delaware, USA, with 15.04% alcohol by volume.
World’s Strongest Belgian Beer - Dogfish Head Raison D’Extra, brewed by Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, Delaware, USA, with 20.0% alcohol by volume.
World’s Strongest Fruit Beer - Dogfish Head Fort, brewed by Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, Delaware, USA, with 18.0% alcohol by volume.
First Brewpub in the First State - Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, Delaware, USA
First Beer Museum in the World – The Brewery Museum Ref. No. 58, Pilsen, Czech Republic opened 1958.
Longest Working Bartender – Angelo Cammarata of West View, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA began working as a bartender on April 7, 1933 when beer was ten cents per glass. In 2003, he was granted a certificate by Guinness World Records for 71 years of tending bar.
World’s Largest Beer Festival – Oktoberfest, Munich, Germany is visited by more than 7 million people annually. In an area as large as 50 football fields, over 1,532,197 gallons of beer are served.
Beer Festival with World’s Greatest Variety of Beer – The Great American Beer Festival, Denver, Colorado, USA holds the Guinness World Record for offering more beers at festival than any other in the world, with 377 breweries serving 1,672 craft beers.
Largest Beer Bottle Collection – Ron Werner of the USA was bestowed a certificate in 2002 for his collection of 11,644 different beer bottles accumulated since 1982, including 7,128 that remain unopened. Among this collection are 1,704 brands. He has sampled almost every one of these brands.
World’s Largest Bar Towel – Although this category does not fall within the records of the Guinness archives, it is notable enough to gain a place of mention. Dr. Glendon Bogdon of Wisconsin, USA created the world’s largest bar towel using 185 authentic bar towels, sewn together. It was 20 feet long, 9.5 feet wide, and maintained the proportions of a regular bar towel. In April, 2004, he donated it to the Milwaukee, Wisconsin Channel 10-36 Great TV Auction to support Public Television.
World’s Largest Bar Towel Collection – Bob Begley of the United States of America snatched the record in March, 2005 for having 2,372 bar towels from 27 countries. In 2010, his collection has grown to 4,752 towels from 41 countries. He has been collecting bar towels since 1990.
Largest Per Capita Beer Consumption – The Czech Republic is listed as having a beer consumption of approximately 35 gallons of beer per person, almost twice that of the USA.
Largest Volume of Beer Consumed – The USA holds the record for the greatest volume of beer consumed, measured at 6,439,000 gallons, with an average consumption of 23.5 gallons per person.
Largest Aluminum Drink Can – A reproduction of a can of Draught Guinness, fashioned by O’Brien Aluminum for Guinness Australasia in 1999, measured 14 feet 9 inches high, 5 feet 10 inches wide, and weighed 661.39 pounds. It could hold 7,625 pints of beer.
World’s Largest Pub Crawl – Confirmation of the record set in June 2005, arrived on February 14, 2006, for the largest pub crawl in Maryborough, Queensland, Australia. In order to meet qualification standards, 1,198 of the total Maryborough population of 26,000 were required to visit 10 pubs in 6 hours, and drink at least one drink (alcoholic or not), at each pub. A stamped card was carried and submitted by each participant.
NOTE: Maryborough was named “happiest place in Australia” in a National Well-Being Survey.
Fastest Beer Bottle Opening – On April 2, 1999, a team of three members, led by Alois Unertl of the Unertl Brewery, Munich, Germany, succeeded in opening 300 bottles of beer in 1 minute 47 seconds on the set of Guinness Die Show der Rekorde. Each member opened 100 bottles, relay style, using a specially designed bottle opener.
Beer Bar with the Largest Selection of Beer in the World – In 2002, Dave Alexander of the Brickskeller, Washington, DC, received a Guinness World Record certificate for having the largest selection of beer in the world, a total of 1,072 different beers.
Drinking the Most Beer in 5 Minutes – Eric Lean of Crowley, United Kingdom hold the Guinness World Record for drinking 7.75 imperial pints of beer in 5 minutes. The record was set in January, 2003.
Fastest Beer Mile – Jim Finlayson of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada holds the record time of 5 minutes, 09 seconds, set on 08 December, 2007 for completing the fastest “Beer Mile.” Competitors must consume a 355 ml can of beer before running each lap, for a total of 4 laps, or 400 meters. The fastest time wins. A penalty lap must be run if the competitor vomits before completing the 4-lap requirement.
Beer Keg Balancing – John Evans of the United Kingdom holds the Guinness World Record for balancing 11 empty beer kegs, weighing 339 pounds, on his head for 10 seconds. His record was set on June 15, 1998.
Balancing Pints of Beer – John Evans of the United Kingdom holds the Guinness World Record for balancing 235 pints of beer on his head, set September 7, 2002 in Dessau, Germany.
Drinking Fastest 3 Pints – The world record for drinking the fastest 3 imperial pints of a liquid was set by Barry Wilson of Stroud, United Kingdom, in December, 2002, when he consumed 3 pints of beer in 31 seconds.
Drinking the Fastest Liter of Beer – On June 22, 1977, Steven Petrosino broke the World Record for drinking 1 liter of beer in 1.3 seconds at the Gingerbreadman in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, USA. The previous record was held by Peter Dowdeswell of the United Kingdom, who drank 1 liter in 2.3 seconds.
Most Beer Mats Flipped – Mat Hand of the United Kingdom succeeded in the flip and catch of 112 beer mats on May 9, 2001 at Waterstone’s Bookshop Gallery in Nottingham, United Kingdom.
Largest Beer Vat in the World - built by the Meux Brewery, London, UK in 1795. Made of wood and enormous cast iron hoops, it held 860,000 gallons of porter.
Greatest Flood of Beer – In October, 1814, one of the largest vats at Meux Brewery exploded, sending a flood of porter into the streets. The vat was constructed of wood, and was held together by 29 cast iron hoops, each weighing 500 pounds. Capacity of the vat was 126,000 gallons, and created a flood of beer that caused another vat holding 76,000 gallons to collapse. Eight people died through drowning, drunken poisoning, or injuries beyond the scope of the medical community at the time.
Are you finished laughing yet? Have a pint and carry on!
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