Pilsners, blonde ales, India pale ales, lagers, porters, stouts: the varieties and styles of beer are endless. But as diverse as the drink is, its appeal is universal - beer is the most-consumed alcoholic beverage in the world. From pubs and inns to restaurants, bars and microbreweries, beer has made itself a staple drink around the globe. Celebrating the heritage of the world's favourite tipple, Gavin D. Smith traces beer from its earliest days to its contemporary consumption. After exploring the evolution of brewing technology, the book travels from Mexico to Milwaukee, Beijing, Bruges and beyond, demonstrating the dazzling variety of beer styles and brewing processes to be found around the world. Once brewed in monasteries to be consumed as 'liquid bread' on fast days, beer is now the drink of choice at festivals and celebrations worldwide. Containing a wealth of detail in its concise, wonderfully illustrated pages, Beer will appeal to connoisseurs and casual fans alike.