Random Wikipedia factoid of the day

Beer was prohibited in Iceland until 1989.

This was too crazy a fact for me to just trust Wikipedia on.  Sure enough:

Beer was illegal in Iceland until 1989.  Yes, this is not a misprint.  Iceland, like the USA, underwent prohibition in the early part of the 20th century.  Our friends in Spain & Portugal helped resolve this situation in the 1930s when they unilaterally stated that they would accept no more Icelandic salted cod (fish & fish products are Iceland’s largest export) unless Iceland agreed to import red wine.  Iceland’s response was to agree and the door was open.  Iceland also had a history of producing a rough home-spirit called Brennivín (tastes like Aquavit) and the push was also made to legalize hard spirits.  Somehow, beer slipped through the cracks and remained ‘prohibited’, although I am told it wasn’t especially illegal to have it, just illegal to buy or sell it.

Happily they now have a national beer day to celebrate the end of the prohibition – March 1st.

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