August 5, 2011

It's International Beer Day, cheers!

Day 217 of Vintage 365


In the world of beverages, beer is not my favourite. However, that's not why I won't be drinking any today. Instead it's due to the fact that I'm not able to consume any alcohol at all due to medical reasons. Thus a sip of beer hasn't passed my lips in almost a decade.

Beer, however, has been (often in the form of ale) the drink of the people for centuries, beloved by everyone from college kids at spring break bashes to micro brew swigging connoisseurs, and when the sun is pelting down your neck during these dog days of summer, it can be precisely what one needs to beat the beat.

Beer's history is a rich one that's steeped in legend and fact, a bubbling mix of ideas that caught on and others that raise more eyebrows than they do blood alcohol levels. From the recent trend in flavoured beers (I've heard pumpkin beer is fantastic, but can't speak first hand) to the classic taste of hops, beer finds its way into nearly every country and the fridges of many, many households the world over.

Started four years ago in Santa Cruz, California, International Beer Day is centered around three points: to bring folks together to enjoy the refreshing flavour of a good beer, to honour those who brew and serve up beer, and to unite the world in a celebration of all the beers of each nation and culture.

It's obviously not a real holiday, and it's not a vintage related day, but what is old school is beer itself. For about as long as beverage companies have been placing ads in the public eye, beer has been in the lime (lime wedge? Smile) light.

During the mid-twentieth century beer was amongst the most common beverages seen in print ads, and few companies at the time did a better job of promoting their product than Rheingold Beer.


Famous throughout North America for their Miss Rheingold Girls (attractive young women who were chosen to be the face of the company in print ads for a year at a time), between 1940 and 1965, these lovely lasses helped peddle Rheingold's drinks to the nation.

Though Rheingold's popularity diminished as the century wore on and the Rheingold Girls disappeared from the public's eye, today the ads of this once highly popular beer company make for some of the most charming and attractive vintage alcoholic beverage advertisements of the day.

So while I won't be polishing off a cold, foamy pint today myself, I will be looking through some of my favourite Rheingold Beer ads (like the beautiful one  above from 1955, which comes by way of curly-whirly on Flickr) in celebration of the undeniable role that beer has long held in our culture.

Whether you're busting out the bottle opener or joining me in a less carbonated celebration of ale, cheers and happy International Beer Day, everyone!


  1. This is brilliant - thanks so much for sharing. I always feel slightly unlady-like when I opt for beer at the pub, but next time I'll just make-believe that I'm a Rheingold Girl!

  2. Love your blog, now following and looking forward to following the rest of your "days" xx Ava