The world’s oldest beer is on eBay for $155,000

By 04.25.12

I’ve complained before about beer turning up on eBay, but I’ll make an exception for the exceptional. A sealed bottle of Allsopp’s Arctic Ale from 1852 has just gone on the auction site, and the price is staggering.

To put the beer’s age in context for those of you too lazy to do the math, this beer was bottled around the same time your great-great-great grandparents were born. Arctic Ale was originally brewed for the rescue mission of famed British explorer Sir John Franklin, which I believe is English for “He who seeks the Northwest passage.”As was the custom in those days, beer accompanied every ship on the journey both for medicinal purposes and to help ease the rigors of countless days at sea. A contest was held to see who could create a beer specifically meant to endure the hardships of the Arctic journey, and Allsopp’s won the right to have theirs be the beer taken along for the ride. As most know, that trip went more poorly than the recent Costa Cruise in Italy.

The same recipe was brewed again a mere five years later, and that is the batch from whence this bottle came. It’s was still intended to bear the burden of a trecherous Arctic journey, only no one expected the journey to still be going on in 2012. There’s a lot of history behind it, but the actual listing does well to explain its journey as well as tenuous ties to the President of the United States. Right now you can buy it for the low low price of $155,000 or you can try to steal it away at auction for a measly $89,900. Check out the auction on ebay.


Cheers to @RateBeer.

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