Blame Henry VIII for it. He may have done some good things in his time...can't think of anything off-hand mind you but the one BIG mistake he made was closing down the monasteries all over England...well, he didn't just 'close them down', it was more like razing them to the ground and confiscating all their wealth.
Even that is, perhaps, not a bad thing you could argue...but ridding us of the monks and the kind of know-how they had...that is a different matter.
Look at Germany...or to be more local, Munich. It is Lent right now which means that your standard Christian should be avoiding all sorts of nice nibblies...and the eponymous monks in Munich were no exception.
However, they were as ready as the next heathen to bend the rules...
"Ok...", they argued no doubt, "...we can't eat eggs, we can't eat beef, we can't eat pork...we can't even drink wine...hmm... but there is nothing about beer right?"
So they issued forth and brewed a beer, a special beer; a beer to fill those days of abstinence between Ash Wednesday and Easter. And since Lent was a time when the rules had to be strongly adhered to, they brewed a strong beer - Starkbier - and I am just on my second and it is in the process of blowing the top of my head off!
It seems an innocuous brew...tastes great and begins by warming you around the chest and then goes to your head and begins to press ever so gently on the inside of your brain casing...and it makes you feel...just fine!
The very thing to escape from snowy cold wintry March blues...
And that Tudor burk Henry the bloody VIII...he would have loved it!