New research shows that fruit flies may be partially responsible for that intoxicating beer smell.
We’re more like fruit flies than you'd believe: They’re just as drawn to beer’s smell as we are. Beer's scent partially comes from the common brewer's yeast that's used to make it.
A new study published in Cell Reports shows that the aroma of yeast attracts fruit flies, who then help disperse it before it's beer in your glass.
After flies munch on a yeast colony, the yeast remnants cling to fruit flies' bodies like a train hopper.
Here you can see the fluorescent yeast cells on the leg of a fruit fly. (Sorry if it made you a bit squeamish.) Yeast is a fungus that's commonly found in nature that eats starches and sugars and poops carbon dioxide, which is where fizz comes from in drinks like champagne and beer (and what makes bread rise).
Yeast can also have a symbiotic or parasitic relationship with animals. The flies scatter it during their tiny travels, flinging yeast bits far and wide so it can colonize.