• Tony Forder

Ode to Saccharomyces Cerevisiae

Updated: Apr 14, 2021

Spoken Word


Back in the murky mists of time

Beasts and primates were pounding pools

Of randomly found wild fermentations

Tree frogs taking their nightly fix from fermented flower juice

Saccharomyces Cerevisiae, Brettanomyces

Working magic, providing the elixir of life



Fast forward to the modern era

Yea, past the beginnings of civilizations

Call it brewing, nomads settling down to farm and brew

Chinese, Mesopotamians, Aztec, Incas, Mayans

Egyptians, Etruscans, Druids, all with their own fermented beverages


Anno Domini - herbal ales, psychotropic gruits

Medieval times, beer safer than water to drink

Godisgoode, yes Godisgoode

The industrial revolution, more beer for the masses

The 20th century, dialing down ingredients for the bottom line


Does Saccharomyces mind that its fuel is not all barley and malt

The very meat of the beer

But watered down with corn and rice

Its secretions becoming bland

Does the yeast mind that its joyful feasts are mostly now enclosed?

Except in places where the wildness is still embraced


Perhaps the yeast does not care on what it feasts

But its evolutionary partner does — us

Awakened from the dark night of American beer

When blandness walked the land

Gradually more and more persons

Peaked through the cloying curtain of light pilsner

And saw and tasted other flavors in other countries

Saccharomyces whispered in the ears of hippies and self-sustaining types

Make your own, brew your own beer

Homebrewing opened the Pandora's box of beer styles

Rich ambers, hoppy pilsners, porters, stouts and barleywines

Yes, beer can come in more than one description

Cerevisiae clapped its hands as buds of flavor

Sprouted in the barren landscape of beer

Homebrewing pioneers piecing together the first modern microbreweries

A labor of love at first

Gradually gaining strength

Overcoming the powers that be

Wrestling off the death grip of big beer

That would choke this infant at birth

Gaining respect and a place at the table

Powered by an unstoppable force — evolution

Co-evolution with Saccharomyces


Humans set themselves apart when they began to cook

Less chewing, more thinking

Brains enlarged, stomachs shrank

Way before the clay pots came for brewing

Harnessing the powerful force of Saccharomyces

Or did the yeast harness us to do its work?

To help it propogate, as it must

For what are we but ambulatory devices

Hosts for untold yeasts and bacterias


If so, we might as well enjoy the ride, eh?

Doing the dance with yeast

Evolution, unleashing the palate of these New Burgundians

Food and flavor, beer and beatitude

The music is cranked, the dance grows faster

Beer and breweries sprouting everywhere

Saccharomyces Cerevisiae never had it so good

In so many places, with so many people

The ultimate collaboration

Godisgoode, yes godisgoode.


TLK – 2015