Beer In Ads #2045: The Brown Bottle Joke

Monday’s ad is for Miller High Life, from 1913, published in the Telegraph Herald on July 2, 1913. In this curious ad, titled “The Result of Good Brewing—,” the scene is a parade of Germany soldiers. Though it’s hard to read, toward the bottom it reads “High Life in Germany,” while to the left the Miller Girl has been inserted into the illustration as if she’s watching the parade.


But even more curious about this ad is the inset box, “The Brown Bottle Joke,” where they try to explain why using a clear bottle is actually better than using brown, and they do so without even mentioning why brown is preferred or indeed anything about what effect light would have on the beer after bottling.

The brown bottle fallacy has been so completely exploded that little is left to be said in defense of that side of the question which advocated the use of dark bottles to the absolute exclusion of light bottles. It is admitted that common beer comes in dark bottles and that beer of a high degree of stability is preferably bottled in light bottles.

Wahl-Henius Institute of Fermentology (America’s greatest authorities on brewing) are in accord with this view. Here is their statement in relation to the bottling of high-grade beer:

“FOR SUCH BEERS THE LIGHT BOTTLE is PREFERABLY EMPLOYED because it can more readily be inspected before filling to insure thorough cleanliness and because the finished package reveals at a glance whether the contents meet the requirements of the consumer as to color, clarity and freedom from sedimentation.”


Beer In Ads #2043: Terrific Twosome

Saturday’s ad is for Miller High Life, from 1956. In this ad, a couple is grocery shopping — I just love their shopping outfits — as he’s putting a six-pack of Miller High Life in their cart. She’s holding up a half grapefruit? Or what is that? It looks like it has a yellow rind but a large green center. Is that the pairing alluded to by “Terrific Twosome.” Or is it simply the couple themselves?


Patent No. 3104974A: Process For Improving The Brewing Characteristics Of Hops

Today in 1963, US Patent 3104974 A was issued, an invention of Pavel Weiner, for his “Process For Improving the Brewing Characteristics of Hops.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes these claims:

Hops which have been freshly picked and are then used either immediately, or after having been stored for a reasonably short period, for brewing, contain etheric oils which are of considerable importance for the taste of the resulting beer. Since hops cannot always be processed immediately after picking, the storage of hops represents a special problem, since hops stored in the open air start to decompose immediately even when given a conventional drying treatment to reduce their water content to from about 10 to 12% by weight. Decomposition proceeds more rapidly if the air in contact with the hops is moist, and if the temperature at which the hops are stored is high.

Known methods of ensuring that hops retain their desirable qualities even during long storage are, therefore, based on storing the hops at a low temperature and in dry air, or on keeping atmospheric air away from the hops while they are in store and while they are being conveyed to the brewery. The hops are therefore placed in gas-tight vessels, the air being then sucked out of the vessel and replaced by an inert gas, usually carbon dioxide. In another known process to improve the keeping properties of hops, they are compressed into a rigid block, then enclosed in a gas-previous envelope, and temporarily subjected to a low ambient pressure of from about 1.5 to 2.3 mm. of mercury, whereafter they can be stored in the open air for a longer but still limited time.

All these methods of storing or improving the keeping properties of hops are expensive, increase the cost of the hops, and cannot prevent the gradual advance of the decomposition processes which start immediately the hops have been picked. Such processes lead to the formation and collection in the hops of undesirable odorants and flavoring substances which are imparted very rapidly to the beer brewed with such hops. Although some of these volatile substances evaporate with the steam while the mash is being boiled with the hops, the flavor of the mash is nevertheless impaired and this deficiency is clearly perceptible in the finished beer.

The main groups of flavoring substances which impair the taste of beer are substances which are naturally present in some kinds of hops, substances arising out of natural aging of the hops, and substances produced by very bad storage conditions.

There are also other flavoring substances which the hops can pick up from the ambient air while they are in store.

Many breweries endeavour to improve the brewing properties of a hop having undesirable flavor substances by brewing or even boiling the hops before they are added to the mash. This step does not remove all the unwanted substances and also has the disadvantage of removing from the hops ingredients which are very important for brewing, for such ingredients are, like the unwanted decomposition products, etheric oils or resins which are readily soluble in water and are transferred into the water used for brewing or boiling and so separated from the hops with such water.

According to the present invention loose hops are introduced into a gas-tight vessel which is then evacuated to a pressure between 15 and mm. of mercury and maintained at that pressure for from 15 to 60 3,104,974 Patented Sept. 24, 1963 ice minutes by introducing pure air or a neutral gas as the remaining atmosphere is sucked out.

This process has the effect of removing from the hops every kind of flavor substance which impairs the beer, but only such substances, and so does not significantly reduce the content in the hops of these flavor substances which are important for brewing.

What the residual pressure maintained in the treatment vessel should be, within the limits specified, depends upon the extent to which unwanted flavor substances are present in the hops, but the pressure should not go any lower than the bottom limit of 5 mm. of mercury, since at this pressure the hops start to release the volatile aroma substances which are useful in brewing. Similarly, the treatment time largely depends upon the proportion of unwanted flavour substances, but it is better to treat the hops at a relatively high residual pressure in the vessel for a relatively long time, rather than to reduce the residual pressure to the lower limit specified or even further in order to shorten the treatment time.

The results of the treatment just outlined can very easily be determined directly after treatment by an odor test. If such a test is unsatisfactory, the treatment can readily be repeated one or more times.

To ensure that decomposition and production of further unwanted flavorings does not restart in hops which have been treated in accordance with the invention, it is preferable to apply the process according to the invention immediately before the hops are added to the mash.

If, as is often done, the hops are ground before being added to the mash, it is convenient to apply the process according to the invention after the hops have been ground, since unwanted flavoring substances are formed as a result of the heat generated when the hops are ground. Treatment after grinding removes these undesirable substances.

The apparatus for carrying out the process is very simple for instance, the vessel can have, in addition to the connection for the suction pump, another connection through which it can be connected to a fresh air or inert gas source. This other connection can take the form of a valve which opens when the required pressure in the vessel is reached, so that the air or gas enters the vessel as soon as the pressure to which the valve has been set is reached and for as long as that pressure is maintained.

Extended experiments and the practical application of the process according to the invention have confirmed that all the disadvantages associated with the hop are obviated, hop aroma is improved very considerably, and so unwanted flavoring substances or odorants do not enter the beer, thereby yielding in a beer having a very fine aroma.

Example From a hop pocket which had bee-n stored for several months, a proportion having an unpleasant cheesy smell was removed, loosened up by being crumbled, and subjected to a low pressure of 10 mm. of mercury for 15 minutes. The atmosphere which continued to be sucked out of the vessel after the pressure of 10 mm. of mercury had been reached because of continuing operation of the pump was replaced by a supply of fresh air. The cheesy smell was not perceptible after this treatment, and the beer brewed with the hops thus treated was free of any unwanted secondary flavor.


As Thirsty As A Fish

Here’s an interesting bit of history from the 1860s. As far as I can tell, it was published in The Illustrated Times on October 10, 1863. It was drawn by Charles H. Bennett, a well-known Victorian cartoon artist, who worked for many publications, as well as providing art illustrating several books, as well. This was titled “As thirsty as a fish,” and was a satire on Darwin’s “Origin of Species,” which had just been published in 1859. Here’s how it was described. “Showing the evolution of a fish to a beer drinker, with his fin in his pocket, a few old rags, a convenient leaning post and committed to a constant thirst that no amount of beer can quench.”

And in the book, “Charles Darwin and Victorian Visual Culture,” by Jonathan Smith when “As Thirsty As A Fish” appeared in book form, it was accompanied by text indicating it “depicts the British workman as a drunkard who sees business, duty, and friendship merely as impediments to his indulgence.”

Apparently the “Origin of the Species” satires, known as “Development Drawings,” were pretty popular, as there were at least eighteen of them I turned up in a search of Yooniq Images. “As Thirsty As A Fish” appears to have been numbered “No. 20″ in the book, so it seems likely there were even more.


Beer In Ads #2041: How Ish Dot

Thursday’s ad is for Miller High Life, from 1909. In this ad, a fat man is walking while swigging a bottle of Miller High Life. The tagline is “How Ish Dot For High Life Beer,” which seems to suggest he’s a German-American, especially with his outfit. Plus, this would have been before anti-German sentiment arose during World War I, so it would not yet have been a problem to portray. Or perhaps he’s simply drunk, and that how they think drunk people talk? But there’s no way an advertiser would show such an overweight person consuming their product for fear of people connecting the two. Especially not fat and drunk.


Beer In Ads #2040: Fountain Of Health

Wenesday’s ad is for Miller High Life, from around 1910. In this ad, it’s a gusher, with a ginormous bottle of Miller High Life providing a fountain of beer. Some people are swimming in it, and others are bringing buckets to fill with the beer. It looks like a popular spot. The artwork is a stylized cartoon, similar to some popular comic strips from that time period.


Beer In Ads #2039: The Man In Black Shoots Pool

Tuesday’s ad is for Miller High Life, from 1960. In this ad, one of a series featuring a nearly black and white ad, with only the beer in color, and the same man engaged in various activities. This time, he’s playing pool, excuse me, billiards, while wearing a tuxedo. He’s eyeing his next shot, and holding a beer in his hand. This is the last one of this series of ads I was able to find. There may be others, but these are the only ones I found. I also discovered that they were all created by an Australian illustrator named John McCormick at Kling Studios in Chicago. McCormick created the ads using a technique known as scratchboard, which is “both a medium, and an illustrative technique using sharp knives and tools for etching into a thin layer of white China clay that is coated with black India ink.” Uncle Ron was an intern at the studio in 1954 and met McCormick while he was there, and tells the story in his Uncle Ron’s Blog. Unfortunately it’s the only information I could find at all about McCormick’s amazing art.


And while I couldn’t find an image of the entire ad larger then the one above, I did find a larger detail of part of the ad centering on the man in black.


Beer In Ads #2038: The Man In Black Listens

Monday’s ad is for Miller High Life, from 1960. In this ad, one of a series featuring a nearly black and white ad, with only the beer in color, and the same man engaged in various activities. This time, his activity seems a lot more passive, as he’s sitting on the floor in his smoking jacket, beer in hand of course, listening to his newfangled Hi-Fi stereo. He’s even left one of the records lying directly on the carpet, which is never a good idea. That’s how you get scratches.


And here’s another version with a little more definition and color, but it’s a lot smaller.


Historic Beer Birthday: Coletta Möritz, Die Schützenliesl

Today is the birthday of Coletta Möritz (September 19, 1860-November 30, 1953). Möritz was essentially Bavaria’s first pin-up girl, nicknamed “the beauty of Munich,” a waitress discovered by painter Friedrich August Kaulbach, who painted her on top of a barrel holding eleven mugs of beer, while the instead of wearing a cap on her head, has a target instead. That’s because after doing a sketch of Möritz in 1878, when she was 18, he painted a large banner, roughly 9 x 16 feet, which hung outside a beer tent for a national shooting competition in July of 1881, in the same spot in Munich where Oktoberfest is held. The painting was called “Die Schützenliesl,” (which means “the shooting Liesl,” which was a popular German name derived from Elizabeth, or sometimes “the Marksmen’s Lisa”) and was an immediate hit. For the rest of her life — she lived to be 93 — Coletta was known as die Schützenliesl, and was also painted by other well-known artists while continuing to work as a waitress.

The original painting by Friedrich August Kaulbach, completed in 1881.

The Schützenliesl painting has gone on to become a Bavarian cultural symbol, used on beer labels, postcards and as a logo. In 1905, an operetta, “Die Schützenliesel,” was written by Austrian composer Edmund Eysler, with the libretto by Leo Stein and Carl Lindau.


Her story appears well-known in Germany, Austria and Eastern Europe, but much less so everywhere else. You can find it all over German websites, such as the Falk Report, Über das Leben der Münchner “Schützenliesl” Coletta, Augsburger Allgemeine, two articles on Merkur — Bavaria’s First Pin-up Girl and “I am the great-grandson of Schützenliesl” — and the Croatian Pivnica.

A photograph of Coletta when she was 22.

Here’s one of the few accounts I could find in English, from a newsletter for the German-American Society of Sarasota:

Over 150 years ago, on September 19, 1860, there was born in the village of Ebenried, Bavaria, a child who was to become one of the most admired and colorful figures in the history of Bavaria and beyond. Born Colletta Möritz, she would become “die Schützenliesl” (the Marksmen’s Lisa), beloved by all who knew her, as well as by those who knew her only through pictures of her that circulated widely. Even to this day, after she is long gone from the public scene, the well-known song “Die Schützenliesl” is played – and sung heartily.

When Colletta’s unmarried mother, Marianne Möritz, found village life too confining, she moved with her child to the capital city of Munich. As soon as Colletta grew to school age, she was given over to the poor sisters in the Au (Armen Schulschwestern) for child care and schooling. These sisters had a convent, the only one in those days where girls were trained to become teachers. Colletta yearned to become a handicraft teacher (one who would teach skills such as knitting and sewing). Her mother, meantime, became independent by opening her own second-hand shop in Munich.

As Colletta was growing up she met many Munich artists who frequented her mother’s shop, looking for old costumes to use for historical paintings or for decorating their studios. It was not just at her mother’s shop, however, where Colletta met these artists, but also at her first place of employment, where she worked as a beer hall girl. (She had failed to continue her dream of becoming a teacher because of money problems.) So by age 16 she was serving beer at the Sterneckerbräu, a popular beer hall frequented by the same artists she had seen at her mother’s shop.

The beer hall proprietor observed this new beer Mädchen and was delighted with the fact that she was such a quick learner, that she could carry 12 Maβ of beer from the basement to the Gaststube, and he noted that in spite of the hard work and menial pay, she was always cheerful. (Note: one Maβ of beer is 1 liter). Colletta was so successful at her job that she became a Kellnerin (waitress) for George Probst, who owned the Brauhauskeller. Although well known and admired, Colletta’s fame was yet to grow from these early contacts. At this point she was just a likeable and pretty beer hall girl – if unusually popular with guests.

Colletta’s world began to explode in 1881, when the 7th Deutsche Bundesschieβen was organized in Munich. A Bundesschieβen is a national shooting match, and this one became a festival of huge proportions. Marksmen from far and wide attended these shooting competitions. It so happened that one of the artists who had come to know Colletta as a beer hall girl was the famous painter Friedrich August Kaulbach. One day Kaulbach was sitting in the Sterneckerbräu tent, before the festival opened, when he suddenly had an idea – he would paint Colletta on a beer tent sign. He asked Colletta to model for him; having her hold mugs of beer in her hands and having her lift a foot as though she was dancing on a barrel. To develop the theme of the “Liesl” as a “marksmen Lisa” he added a marksman’s target to the side of her head. After he made the sketch, he took it to his studio and painted it – ready for display

Positioned on the festival field, called the Theresienwiese, were placed four beer tents (really houses), with names like “Zum wilden Jäger” (to the wild hunter), “Zum blinden Schützen” (to the blind marksman, “Zum goldenen Hirschen” (to the golden stag), and “Zur Schützenliesl” (to the marksmen Lisa). This “Gastwirtschaft” – Zur Schützenliesl – displayed prominently the Kaulbach painting. There she was, the famous Kellnerin, with her swinging skirt, and carrying 11 – not the typical 12 – overflowing mugs of Sterneckerbräu beer. The Schützenliesl, dancing on a barrel, seemed to be floating through the Bavarian beer heaven. When the Schützenfest began, hordes of people tried to get a seat in the Schützenliesl Gastwirtschaft. They wanted to sit under the Schützenliesl picture and have the real Schützenliesl bring a Maβ of beer to them. Not only did the Schützenliesl conquer the hearts of the marksmen themselves, but of all the festival visitors. Whether they were Munich natives or visitors from outside Munich, they headed for the Schützenliesl Gastwirtschaft. There the beer was flowing like a river.

Later, as an old woman, Colletta recalled, “During the whole festival, our tent was packed because everyone wanted their beer served by the Schützenliesl”. The Augsburger Abendzeitung (an Augsburg newspaper, 26 July 1881) reported on that scene: “Attached to the festival tent is the Wirtschaft to the Schützenliesl of Mr. Massinger. The idyllic tower with the red-covered roof and the stork perching on top of it would have been enough to catch the eye of those looking for a Wirtschaft. But then our F.A. Kaulbach draws a ’Liesl’ on it, one so fresh, so voluptuous, so seducing as no marksman has ever seen. It is curious but this lifeless picture seems to be the main attraction. Every nook and cranny was filled with people. One day about 8 o’clock in the evening, the proprietor raced in among the masses, pale from shock, saying that the beer supply was used up to the last drop and thousands of unfortunate beer drinkers were sitting there with their tongues drooping. After a fearful hour, only a few had left their hard-won places, the rattling of a beer wagon could be heard. The steeds raced mightily toward the tent and after a 30-minute battle, the beer was back.” According to a Munich newspaper, 16,300 Maβ of beer were drunk in the Schützenliesl Wirtschaft on the last evening of the shooting contest.

The famous Kaulbach painting of the Schützenliesl hangs today in the Festsaal of the “Münchner Haupt”, short for “Königlich privilegierte Haup.”

Another painting of Möritz, entitled “Beautiful Coletta,” was done by Toni Aron in 1885, a commission by Löwenbräu.

Here’s a translation of an article entitled “‘Schützenliesl’ is symbolic figure,” from an Exhibition of the House of Bavarian History:

In Bavaria the 19th century the inn was a place dominated by men. But what would the Bavarian festival culture without the female member? For International Women’s Day on March 08, we tell the story of Schützenliesl that it has brought to successful businesswoman and advertising icon from simple Biermadl. Even today it is a well known symbolic figure.

Coletta Möritz (1860-1953) was born near Pöttmes in Aichach-Friedberg, an illegitimate child of a small farmer’s daughter and worked after moving her mother at 16 years as Biermadl, ie auxiliary waitress at Sternecker Brau im Tal in Munich.

There perverted also members of the society of artists “tomfoolery”, among them Friedrich August Kaulbach (1850-1920), which struck the attractive beer girl. So he asked in 1878 Coletta Möritz to stand him for a sketch model. The motive of this sketch it was then that the young Coletta could be for advertising icon.


The “Schützenliesl” (here a Landshuter Protect disc of 1881), a dashing beer waitress, is a popular symbol of the Bavarian festival culture. For over a hundred years, it keeps popping up in beer commercials and was immortalized in the eponymous song – an early “Wiesnhit”. Behind the legendary figure hides the waitress and hostess later Coletta Möritz (1860-1953), who came from near Pöttmes. In 1878 the young “Biermadl” was none other than the Bavarian prince and painter Friedrich August von Kaulbach model. For the VII. German federal shooting, which took place in late July 1881 the Theresienwiese, painted Kaulbach the Beautiful Coletta then as “Schützenliesl”. The colossal painting served as exterior decoration of the across Bierbude, in which the young woman also availed itself. For that time the picture was a bold presentation, it excited at the festival and beyond once a stir. Logically also be seen on the few months later bombarded memory disk Landshuter fire Schützengesellschaft that invoked the spirit of the Federal shooting again the “Schützenliesl”.

And here’s a third painting she modeled for, entitled Schützenfest, created by Johann Heinrich Hasselhorst in 1887.

After World War 2, a German songwriter Gerhard Winkler wrote a song entitled “Schützenliesl” in 1952. It was the first post-war Oktoberfest hit and remains a staple of the songs sung in the tents during Oktoberfest. The version below is performed by Marianne & Michael.


Coletta was married twice, and had twelve children. She worked in restaurants and beer halls her entire life, and lived to be 93. Throughout Europe, she’s a famous figure, although especially at Oktoberfest.

Coletta in her later life.

Beer In Ads #2037: The Man In Black Drives

Sunday’s ad is for Miller High Life, from 1960. In this ad, one of a series featuring a nearly black and white ad, with only the beer in color, and the same man engaged in various activities. This time, he’s leaning against his Bentley, because what other kind of car would the man in black drive? I considered calling this the Man in Black Races, but really, he’s just leaning up against the car, and there’s a picnic basket on the ground by his feet. But then again the Man in Black Picnics didn’t sound too good either. Of course, there are other older, collectible cars behind his, so maybe he’s just attending a car show. They may have been starting to run out of ideas for this series.