Friday, March 12, 2010

Belgian vs. Belgium and Pliny vs. Pliney (rant)

Just a quick Friday rant, it's Belgian beer not Belgium beer.  It is just amazing just how often I hear it said or see it written incorrectly, and for whatever reason it really drives me crazy.  You wouldn't say you enjoy England beer (or France fries for that matter), so don't say you like Belgium beer (unless you are talking about New Belgium beer). 

On a related note Russian River's Pliny the Elder/Younger has a short "i" (pln not pln).  I am well aware the the brewer (Vinnie) is one of the main offenders, but he didn't make up the name.  I also hate when I see people spell it Pliney, because I can hear them in my mind saying it wrong.

Beer related words I pronounce incorrectly that I'm sure drive other people crazy include Hoegardden, Lambic, Gueuze along with pretty much every other Belgian beer term and brewery name.  To check on your pronunciation skills, check out The On-Line Guide to Belgian Beer - Pronunciation Guide.

Any other beer words that anyone has a pet peeve with?


Shawn said...

My pet peeve is when people pronounce Stout "Guinness."

Unknown said...

Amen to that. The one that used to get me was Cantillon. Always wanted to pronounce the L's for some reason. Also can never say Westvleteren right.

The speaking of beer link is interesting, a had a few wrong. The descriptions for fruit lambic are off I think. It says framboise, kriek, and peche are lambic fruit beers but thats not necessarily the case. Liefmans is a prime example of a brewery that makes kriek and framboise beers that do not use lambic as a base.

This makes sense since framboise is rasberry in french and kriek is derived from a flemish word for a specific type of cherry.

Hugh Nelson said...

My peeve is mostly because I spent 4 years in Germany. Just about every German word in brewing gets mutilated brutally.

Hefe (german for yeast) said like Jefe in spanish.

Vorlauf is pronounced fore-louf (rhymes with 'your mouth') and not said vore-loff.

Tettnanger is not said 'tett-naynjer' but rhymes basically with 'head-banger'

Lastly, and I think others will agree, is people who call anything that isn't a stout 'lager'. Whether it is pale, brown or amber, regardless of whether it is a lager or an ale.

Unknown said...

I rather like the fact that Pliny the Elder/Younger beer is pronounced with a long "i." I think it differentiates the beer from the historical figures. My personal opinion, as a student of both history and beer.

Mark said...

Actually my pet peeve is when people try too hard to make their pronunciations sound just like the language of origin. Not that "belgian" or "pliny" have anything to do with that. But it drives me crazy when someone speaking in English switches over to sounds that are not native (or natural) to the English language. Giada (on the Food Network) is the number one offender. There's no need to impress anyone with cultural prowess by practicing one word in a foreign language, just let it be.

what we’re drinking said...

My personal favorite is the butchering that Willamette constantly suffers. It's three syllables, not two.

Wil•lam•ette [wi-lam-it]

Anuj said...

off topic again.

how do you go about collecting bottle dregs? just chill the beer and pour all but the last quarter out?

The Mad Fermentationist (Mike) said...

If you are talking a funky beer, then yeah, just pour the beer into your glass until you see the yeast starting to come out, then swirl the rest (should only be ~1/2 inch of beer) and dump it into your carboy or a starter. Letting the bottle sit upright for a couple days in the fridge will ensure you don't waste much beer. Fresher and lower alcohol beers will have more live cells, and a better cross-section of the microbes used to make the beer. Hope that helps, good luck!

jaymo said...

My pet peeves are Lambic and Gueuze, mainly because my Belgian friends gave me crap about those two in particular until I started pronouncing them correctly.

That said, sometimes when those two words are getting tossed around incorrectly pretty often (like at a club meeting) I just give up after awhile and pronounce it wrong just to keep the conversation moving. /sigh

Kevin LaVoy said...

Krauesen. You can add an umlaut instead of the first "e," but it should be pronounced like kr-oi-sen. The umlaut au or "aue" in German is oi. Not ow. Hugh Nelson, while I do not know him, will totally back me up on this on

Wort also. It's pronounced wert.

Brewer said...

werd up

Unknown said...

So this begs the question:
why is it "Flanders" (as in "Flanders Red") and not "Flemish"??

Flanders = geographical noun
Flemish = adjective

Unknown said...

Good point, I've got no good explanation... Canada goose?

Scyrene said...

A wine word, I'm afraid, but the Americans often spell it "Sauterne" (without an -s), whereas the French appellation is "Sauternes".

And in defence of foreign pronunciations, if you are a native/fluent speaker of a language, it can be hard to know/imagine what the Anglicised pronunciation is - I find it hard to say French words in a non-French way, unless they are in common English usage.

Anonymous said...

acetaldehyde. It is five syllables, not six, and the first three syllables are "acid al". It is NOT acetyl-aldehyde, as far too many people say. Where the extra syllable is coming from I have no idea.