Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Wednesday, Pfungstadter Brewery

Hello once again, fellow internet travelers.

I cannot truly express at this time how much fun I had this day.

Firstly, I attended Friedrich-List Schule, where I followed my host, an Information Technology student to his programming class. It was remarkably similar to any Moraine Park classroom. Relatively informal, except for when the teacher gives his lessons or grades. In Germany, schools are quite a bit different, overall. The I.T. session that I attended, I cannot say if it was the same or not, really, as I am not an I.T. student. However, the classrooms are equipped with the technology necessary to properly instruct the students. Smart-boards are in most of the classrooms, I was told, and I really enjoyed seeing them. Honestly, it was the first time I had seen one used in person
Mostly, the teachers gave out marks, or grades for projects on this day. I think that final tests are similar to major projects in the USA. It was a little bit slower than I think a normal school day would go, I will see about that later on today.
After school, we ate a late breakfast/lunch at McDonald's. They are quite better in Germany than in the states, in my personal opinion. They do cost a little but more but it a lot better than the American McDonald's. It just tastes better, so deal with it.
After McDonald's, my host, Chris, and I (the coolest people, in other words), met up with the rest of the group, and we visited Pfungstadter Brewhouse, in Pfungstadt, Hessen. This Brewhouse was originated in 1831 by the Hildebrant family. In past times, the brewery was supplied hops, barley, water, (which in 1516, a law was passed, saying that a true German beer can only consist of water, barley, and hops.) by the local citizens, and in return, the brewery used steam power to provide the town and surrounding area with electricity.
Today, the brewery produces about 1.3 million bottles a month. They are very ecological friendly, and try to reuse as many empty bottle as possible. Even still, they produce around 30 kilograms of waste a day. Most of this waste comes from patrons putting debris in the bottles, which are very hard to remove by a standard washing process. Each process end with 7 cameras that are angled in order to show any impurities in the glass. Every thousand bottles, there is a control bottle. If that bottle fails the tests that are performed on it, all of the bottles beforehand must be rewashed.
Bottles with cracks in them will explode, as they are filled under very high pressure, and capped immediately. They also produce non-alcoholic beer, which can be formed in two ways: firstly, by stopping the fermentation process, or secondly, by taking the alcohol out of the product after it is already fermented. Pfungstadter does the latter, and then uses the resulting alcohol for other purposes. In order to be classified as a non-alcoholic drink, there must be by law less that .5 percent alcohol per unit volume. The average non-alcoholic beer from this brewery contains less than .1.
The we got a complimentary meal from the brewhouse. We all had a great time, and learned a lot about the process of making beer. It also made for a very entertaining ride in the car after the tour, because we were given food and beverage to our liking.

I am tied now, so Gute Nacht everyone.

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