Here's an interesting article (F. Wiens et al., Proc Natl Acad Sci USA (2008) 105:10426-31, "Chronic intake of fermented floral nectar by wild treeshrews") which you might not run across in everyday reading...
- There is a species of palm tree in Malaysia that smells like a brewery
- In fact, the nectar of this palm actually ferments, right in the bud (max concentration about 3.8% alcohol)
- There is a species of tree shrew for which the fermented nectar is a main food source (the shrew pollinates the palm in the process)
- This particular species of tree shrew is believed to be the most like our earliest primate ancestor, dating back 55 million years ago (shrews, like apes, are primates)
- Thus, going out for a beer predates the existence of humans