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Patrick E. McGovern

Dr Patrick E. McGovern  is the Scientific Director of the Biomolecular Archaeology Project for Cuisine, Fermented Beverages, and Health at the University of Pennsylvania Museum in Philadelphia, where he is also an Adjunct Professor of Anthropology.

His academic background combined the physical sciences, archaeology, and history-an A.B. in Chemistry from Cornell University, graduate work in neurochemistry at the University of Rochester, and a Ph.D. in Near Eastern Archaeology and Literature from the Asian and Middle Eastern Studies Department of the University of Pennsylvania.

Over the past two decades, he has pioneered the exciting interdisciplinary field of Biomolecular Archaeology which is yielding whole new chapters concerning our human ancestry, medical practice, and ancient cuisines and beverages. 

He is also the author of  Ancient Wine: The Search for the Origins of Viniculture  (Princeton U., 2003/2004),  Naissance de la vigne et du vin  (Paris: Libre & Solidaire, 2015), recently translated into French as  Naissance de la vigne et du vin  (Paris: Libre & Solidaire, 2015.  Other alcoholic beverages are dealt with in  Uncorking the Past: The Quest for Wine, Beer, and Other Alcoholic Beverages  (U. California, 2009/2010), which follows human ingenuity in making fermented beverages before and after our ancestors came “out of Africa” 200,000 years ago and traveled around the world. 

Popularly, Dr. Pat is known as the “Indiana Jones of Ancient Ales, Wines, and Extreme Beverages.” 

Ancient Brews: Rediscovered and Re-created

Personal website:

Twitter: @DrPatIndy



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Egyptian hieroglyphics depict the pouring out of beer.

The Strange and Wonderful World of Ancient Brews

Many of us now enjoy unusual alcoholic beverage concoctions since the advent of the craft beer and cocktail movements. What we may not realize is that fellow humans have been carrying on like this...