Tag Archive | "MankerBeer Meets"


MankerBeer Meets: Pre-CBC: Amager Bryghus

Amager-Bryghus-trioenAmager Brygghus is a small Danish brewery with an impressive list of beers, several awards and ranked highly among the best breweries in the world and despite being close to Sweden (where I live) their beers can sometimes be difficult to lay your paws on. The respect Morten Valentin Lundsbak and Jacob Storm have earned throughout the years have paved ways for collaborations with well-known breweries such as De Molen, Hoppin Frog, Port Brewing and Goose Island and as you soon will read there are a couple of new collabs being brewed later this spring. Over the last 12 months they have also gone from a two-man operation to hiring two additions to their team as well as making an investment in a new brewing system. The beer list, which you can read at the end of the article is really interesting with a brand new line-up of beers including a one-off lambic series, a Flemish red and a black American pale ale. We asked the brewery team all the questions you might need an answer for to get to know the brewery better before the celebration as well as their suggestions for where to drink the best beers after the sessions. Do not miss them at CBC!


MankerBeer (MB): Founded in 2007, Amager Bryghus is one of the most known and well-respected Danish breweries, what is the success story of Amager Bryghus?
Amager Bryghus (AB): Well, that’s not a question that is easily answered in short 🙂 From the start off we have been following a strategy with 2 legs: we have brewed a series of beers with local names aimed mainly at the local market. Good, solid and well brewed beers, but at the same time not very challenging beers. These beers sell really well locally – being our “cash cow” if you prefer.

But it’s no secret that our heart lies elsewhere. Our second leg is what makes brewing fun: hoppy, huge, weird, black, sour beers – you name it! We love to experiment, we love to play around and have fun. It would simply kill us if we had to brew the same 5 beers for the rest of our lives. These are the kind of beers that have opened the eyes of beer geeks nationally and abroad. And as a consequence has made us interesting for beer importers all over the world. In 2013 almost 50 % of our production will be sold outside Denmark, Amager beers can be found in 15 countries.

Many Danish microbreweries have bowed down since the boom of the “Danish Beer Revolution”. We believe that we’re still here because we cater to all beer drinkers – and we respect all beer drinkers. And when it comes to investment and expansion we’ve always been extremely conservative preferring to make the money before we spend them.


MB: You have received great awards from all over the world and made collaborations with several of the most respected brewers and breweries in the world – what have been the high peaks so far?
AB: There have been many! Perhaps the first was the first time we finished an order to our US importer, Shelton Brothers. Standing there looking at 10 huge export pallets of Hr. Frederiksen truly made us proud. In a different category completely is the first time we ran our automatic bottling machine. After years and years of handbottling you cannot believe what a relief that was. Most small brewers that have grown can attest to that…

And yes we really enjoy collaborating, that’s our play day when those are happening. One particular great day was when we had Mike Rodriguez and Tomme Arthur of Port Brewing/ Lost Abbey visit to brew the first batch of Wookiee IPA. That beer has been so successful that it has become a member of our regular line up of beers.

Actually, in the 3 days just before CBC starts we’ll be doing 3 collaborations 3 days in a row – with Against The Grain, Three Floyds and Cigar City. Really looking forward to that – it’s a great way of making friends in the brewing business, and to exchange views, opinions and tricks.


MB: Apart from the Nordic countries and northern Europe you export to North America and Australia. When I visited the brewery 2 years ago I was told that there soon was not capacity enough to still the demand, you then acquired a new brew work. For how long can the new equipment satisfy the demand and can you expand further within the current premises?
AB: Well, that’s actually a very good question. Already in the first year with the new brewhouse we doubled our production and had no problem selling every drop. In 2013 we’ll probably add another 20-30% to that and then – once again – we’re at maximum capacity. So now what? Well, as said before we’re rather conservative in the way we handle capital, so everything we do is considered in detail – and for very long. We cannot really expand in our current rented facilities, so the next step would be finding or building our own brewery. Right now we’re very happy with the way we share warehouse facilities with Mikkeller and drikkeriget.dk as they bring a lot of dynamics and life into the house. So hopefully a future move could still maintain a working business partnership with these guys which we also consider good friends. But bottom line is that we’re staying where we are – at least for now – working hard towards our next step.


MB: For being such a small country, Denmark has given birth to quite an amount of great brewers and breweries, what is it in the Danish gene pool that makes you such great brewers?
AB: If you had asked this question 10 years ago we might have laughed since the first wave of Danish craft brewing contained an awful lot of terrible and infected beer! So I don’t think a foreign beer lover would have considered the Danish beer scene back then as one containing a lot of great brewers. But luckily the general quality level has gone up for almost all breweries. But speaking in general terms Danes have always been curious. We’re one of the most travelling nations in the world we like to seek out new territory. It’s not anything different in the beer world. And since we had been starved for ages with breweries offering mainly bland lagers of little interest then the bubble burst with a big splash when it eventually burst – leading to the Danish beer revolution. Because abroad Danes had experienced that beer could be so much more than what they were offered in their local supermarket.


MB: The Sinner Series has now been completed; can we expect something similar in the future?
AB: The seven deadly sins are quite well known in the general public, helped a great deal by David Finchers great movie. But not many people know that there actually also exists the seven virtues. Somehow it just felt more….right….for us to start with the sins, considering who we are 🙂 But who knows, there might be a virtue series from us one day. “Chastity” by the way is one of these virtues, we’re sure that beer will be embraced by Systembolaget…


MB: You recently hired expert beer drinker/ticker Henrik Papsø – what will he be doing for Amager? How does it feel to go from a two-man operation to involve more people like Henrik and René Hulgreen?
AB: René has really helped boost production on the new equipment. With an extra brewer we can simply get more brews done, also at times where we holiday, have to travel or go to beer festivals etc. It’s been working perfectly, as René is a skilled brewer and a very pleasant guy to work with.

Henrik Papsø has actually been with us since the start – at least on the side writing press releases, label texts etcetera etcetera in his spare time, but only paid in beer! When we employed him, we let him pick his own title and he chose Head of Communications since he is a journalist by trade. But he’s also our Export manager, he conducts tours and beer tastings, arranges our participation in collaborations and beer festivals – and a ton of other things really.

Of course it’s always a challenge to bring in new people into a small closely knit organization of only two – and to be honest we might not always have the most easy personalities. But things have been going surprisingly smooth – probably because they were handpicked and we knew them very well beforehand. But their results are already quite visible to us. But you know, different opinions and views are very rewarding – even if we may not embrace them, the first time they are presented to us!


MB: As Copenhagen citizens what places (restaurants, bars, beer stores, historical places etc) would you recommend the beer freaks coming to CBC to visit?
AB: If you’re in Copenhagen for CBC only, I think your time to do touristy stuff is very limited. So why not use your few spare hours – to have a beer… With the recent openings of Mikkeller & Friends, Søernes Ølbar and Bryggens Ølbar Copenhagen has really turned into a beer haven. So check out some of these new beer bars – and support them for all their great work for the craft beer world. AND all the other established great beer places of course.


MB: As a CBC veteran, what is the best thing with CBC? How important is the interaction between brewers at a festival like this?
AB: Extremely important, and that’s part of what makes this beer festival different and very special. Because our brewery is so focused on exports, the breweries we compare ourselves with are quality craft brewers from the rest of the world. To meet them, try their beers – and have them try ours – and make friends across borders is both fun and rewarding.


MB: Amager Bryghus is probably bringing one of the most interesting line-ups of beer to CBC, what can you tell us about the beers?
AB: Well, it’s quite a challenge to be told to produce 9 new beers, but we thought – what the heck, let’s just bring 10! No Rice & Curry will be on during all 3 sessions – the other 9 on different sessions. But all are regular debuts at CBC. Some will appear on other festivals and a few of them will, also be released in bottles. But really, this was a great chance to try some of the recipes we had in the book. Hell, without the CBC some of these beers may never have been brewed!


MB: What should beer fans really not miss at Copenhagen Beer Celebration?
AB: Well, the 3 fruit lambics are one-offs for sure. We brewed the base lambic 3 years ago on the old equipment and it has been resting on 3 Bourgogne barrels ever since. One of the barrels have turned vinegar, but the two others were nice. It’s probably our most expensive beer to date: buying fresh fruit in the middle of the Danish winter cannot be recommended! There’s only 40 litres of each.

The days Of Barley And Roses is also a one-off in this non-barrel-aged version. It will later appear in a port barrel edition.
And even if huge Imperial Stouts are getting out of fashion you really should try Double Black Mash – as it’s all-grain as opposed to so many others in the same style. It’s really motor oil – yet strangely balanced.

But many of the first are simply not ready as we write – so we really have no clue as to how they come out!
Hope to see you all – and really looking forward to it!


Thank you all at Amager for answering our questions and for offering this great list of beers! Changes may occur and except for No Rice and Curry the beers will be poured during different sessions. Pinks will be able to try them all.

Amager Bryghus CBC Beer List:

  • No Rice And Curry (India Pale Lager)
  • Showdown in Tourpes (US-style Saison)
  • The Days Of Barley And Roses (Barley Wine)
  • Smoking Scotsman (Scotch Ale)
  • Hr. Papsø In Black (Black APA)
  • Godverdomme (Flemish Red)
  • Double Black Mash (Imperial Stout)
  • Fruiticus Lambicus Blackberry
  • Fruiticus Lambicus Raspberry
  • Fruiticus Lambicus Redcurrant

Posted in MankerBeer Meets:Comments (0)


MankerBeer Meets: Pre-CBC: Bret Kuhnhenn/Kuhnhenn Brewing Co.


Photo: Joe Hakim / realdetroitweekly.com

Michigan, a state host to 100+ craft breweries, but with only one winning the gold medal for best India Pale Ale in the World Beer Cup 2012 – Kuhnhenn Brewing DRIPA (Double Rice IPA). I remember my first Kuhnhenn Brewing Co. beer which isn’t that surprising as I haven’t been lucky enough to try more than a few of the well crafted brews produces by the small brewery from Warren, Michigan. The Kuhnhenn brothers, Bret and Eric started up their business in 1998 but it would take another 3 years before the brewery, winery and meadery finally could open its doors. The brewery used to house a family run hardware store, Lutz Hardware and for the first couple of years Bret and Eric ran it as a combined space for both the hardware store, their home brewing equipment selling business and brewery, until finally settling for just the brewery business.

For several years they also offered up their equipment for Brew on Premises/Winemaking on Premises where beer and wine makers could come and use their equipment. As Kuhnhenn Brewing Co kept growing they unfortunately had to focus on their own production, although they still offer a possibility to come and share their passion for beer through Kuhnhenn Guild of Brewers. Every Wednesday of each month, at 7.30 in the brewery beer enthusiasts gather to collaborate, discuss and enjoy beer. To me, this is what brewing is all about, passion, enthusiastic people and an open and welcoming atmosphere.

I was thrilled to see Kuhnhenn’s name on the list of breweries attending Copenhagen Beer Celebration 2013 and when I heard that Bret was to hold one of the four master-classes I couldn’t help myself to ask for a taste of what it would be about. More than that the below interview also reveals the beer Bret is not too satisfied with and of course a list of all the beers that they are bringing!


MankerBeer (MB): Your story with the brewery is a little unusual; you and your brother ran a family owned hardware store, which unfortunately had to close, whereby you turned it into a brewery? Is it true that the boil kettle was made from a yeast starter for a sour dough bread company?
Bret Kuhnhenn (BK): We had no money to start a brewery, We tried a liquidation sale and sold about 1/2 of the remaining hardware. We only got about 10,000 Dollars. That allowed me to go to auctions to buy used dairy or food manufacturing equipment. Keep in mind we are in Detroit where you can get anything fabricated with in 15 kilometers. The first larger piece of equipment was a huge coffee maker, 300 liters in size; we used this as a fermenter in the hardware store. It eventually turned into a kettle / Still as it was steam jacketed.
We also bought a plasma cutter and TIG welder to build the brewhouse. We had some roll-formed SS pieces made and welded and fabricated in the used tanks in house. Used tanks being : The Lauter tun was a hot peanut butter tank from Quaker Oats. The Kettle was a sour dough yeast starter tank from a bread company. We probably went to 20 or so auctions to find tanks with the correct geometry and jackets. I had quotes for someone to build the Lautertun at about $35,000. We have about $8,000 Into the one we have.


MB: Kuhnhenn is known both for the great beers, but also for the high quality meads – was it set from the start that you would brew both mead and beer?
BK: We started making mead in 1995. So about four years after we started making beer. I fell in love with this age old Norse beverage. We experimented a whole lot with wild flower varieties of honey. Mead can be as diverse as beer and will expand greatly in the next few years.


MB: You are currently expanding and have been looking for a spot to place and start a 38 barrel-production facility, how is it going?
BK: Expansion plans have been a roller coaster for us. Each site we choose requires or business plan to change. We are currently looking a Farm brewery concept. We need to make our move soon as our beers are very high demand. We bought this 45 Hl brewhouse years ago. But finally now we can prove to the bank we can pay back a large loan for the second brewery.


MB: At the moment you produce small batches, distributed locally as well as to the wider Michigan area and New York (and some kegs and bottles magically appearing in Denmark) – are there any plans to expand into more states?
BK: Currently we are brewing 2-3 batches a day on our 10 Hl system. We have told our distributors not to take new accounts as I do not want to disappoint current customers. Many already do not get a constant supply of beer, but they take what they can get. When the New brewery opens we will be able to supply about 70 Markets, But not in the traditional marketing way, The beer will only go into the best beer/ liquor stores and Craft beer bars. The plan is to still keep it rare but in more markets world wide.


MB: One day you brew pumpkin mead and the next day a 9% abv pale american belgo style strong ale with american simcoe hops, what is the brewing philosophy at Kuhnhenn?
BK: Our Philosophic take on our products is this: Beverages with distinct personalities. Meaning our beer next to each other will be noticeably different . Our Pale Ale doesn’t taste like or even similar our India Pale Ale. Or our Porter doesn’t taste like our Stout. This is done in several ways; 1. Brewing technique, mashing in many temperatures, different boil times, 2. Yeast and fermentation temperature. 3. Tank geometry (actually a large impact) 3. Ingredient variation. We make the beer for ourselves and hopefully some one buys the rest.


MB: Would it be possible to keep a similar range of beers with the same beer styles if you would expand? Would size matter in regards to what beers one would have to produce to finance a larger brewery?
BK: We look at the range of beers we make and in order to simplify our production, We will not be pushing the full line of beers. This is what i have been racking my brain at and our business plan goes like this: There are multiple tiers VS. VSOP. XO and Reserve. VS available to all the market area we enter into Pale, IPA etc. VS and VSOP Is for craft beer bars and retail example would be White Devil and Double Rice IPA(DRIPA) . XO is limited ex. Fourth Dementia Olde Ale and Dark Heathen Triple Bock. Reserve is Raspberry Eisbock and super rare vintage Stuff.


MB: At Copenhagen Beer Celebration we will see a couple of master classes, of which you will host one about the current beer trends – could you give a short analysis of what status beer have in the US today?
BK: The Beer Industry in the US is in a huge flux right now. Many new breweries popping up every day. The Giants are trying to stop loosing their market share. The Giants are coming out with different brands that sound like hand crafted beer. They however do not realize in doing this they are pointing those customers more towards craft beer because they are marketing and advertising it more that we can. The Giants are loosing their identity. Not sure what they want to become. Some making many flavors of fruity Wit beer, Some making flavors of Lemonaid – like beverages. Beer with the lowest Caloric content. Etc. Are these beers? Well yes. Adding to already huge list of beer styles. They can make excellent craft- tasting beer If they choose. We make these crazy fruit beers as well but it is not our core focus to make beer like lemonaid. We do use adjunct in beers like the Giant breweries, so the now the Brewers Association says I am no longer a craft brewer because of this. Our Double Rice IPA is one of our flag ship beers. As in the name of the beer it uses rice. This beer took best IPA in the world at the World Beer Cup. Which is a Brewers Association event. So drawing the line of who is a craft brewer….. I guess the line is blurry to me.


MB: Among your beers which one is your favorite? And which of one (if any) aren’t you as proud of as you might have wished and would like to adjust or improve?
BK: People ask me this question often. I am a mood drinker, the beer I drink sometimes reflects my mood. Like hot day- pilsner, Cold snowy day – Fourth Dementia, Happy and would like a hoppy treat – DRIPA. Happy and ready for a long drinking session- Loonie Kuhnie Pale Ale. Loonie Kuhnie is my oldest recipe and It took four years to tweak it out. We recently did a Cascade hop comparison challenge, We used the same hop grown in a different region in the United States. This was the only change made in the Loonie Kuhnie pale recipe. 9 out of 10 people could tell the difference. The change in the hop was more Orange like aroma than Grapefruit like aroma. All customers liked both of the beers. The original was preferred and was regarded as just more drinkable.

As far as not happy with a beer I made. I made a beer once with potato Juice. The concept was to make a Hash browns beer for breakfast. It was more like a green potato aroma and flavor. Just not good. Next time I will just put the potato in the mash. I know this turns out.


MB: What should beer fans really not miss at Copenhagen Beer Celebration?
BK: At the CBC do not miss DRIPA, Fourth Dementia, and Raspberry Eisbock. These are rare types and true Kuhnhenn originals.

I can’t wait to try everyone’s beers!


Thanks Bret! Now lets see what Kuhnhenn are bringing in their wondery beer basket (changes may occur and different beers will be poured during different sessions)!

Kuhnhenn CBC Ber List:

  • Fluffer IPA
  • DRIPA 12
  •  Loonie Kuhnie
  •  Simcoe Silly
  •  Aldebaran
  •  Iron Monger Dunkel
  •  Braggot Mead
  •  Raspberry Eisbock
  •  Bourbon Barrel Fourth Dementia

Posted in MankerBeer Meets:Comments (0)


MankerBeer Meets: Sam Calagione, soon in a Stockholm close to you

Out of courtesy to the non-Swedish speaking persons we meet and interview, all of our international “MankerBeer Meets” are published in English.


Sam-Calagione-brew-masters-260Few are the beer interested swedes that have missed this week’s big thing – Sam Calagione of Dogfish Head Brewery will come to Sweden and the beer bar Oliver Twist for a beer dinner, followed by a friday brew session with Nynäshamns Ångbryggeri. The brew session will result in the next chapter of Dogfish Head’s Ancient Ales series where Sam together with Dr. Patrick McGovern tries to “rebrew” ancient recepies based on the findings and residues from old kegs and bottes. The beer that will be recreated at Nynäs has been the project of Lasse Ericsson, brewer at Nynäshamns Ångbryggeri and Dr. Pat and is taken from a 3,5000 year old Danish drinking vessel made of birch bark and will be a 10% ABV strong traditional ale named Kvasir. Except for birch bark the wheat wine-style ale will host lingonberries, cranberries, myrica gale, meadow sweet, honey and yarrow – all traditional Scandinavian ingredients.


In Norse mythology, Kvasir was a being born of the saliva of the Æsir and the Vanir, two groups of gods. / Wikipedia

Already back in 2005/2006 a meeting between Sam and Jörgen ‘Jugge’ Hasselqvist from Oliver Twist resulted in a beer, back then Sam needed cloudberries for the Arctic Cloudberry Imperial Wheat, but this time around Jugge has merely functioned as the matchmaker – which all Swedish beer fans appreciate and are thankfull for.

How can one not find both the beer dinner and brew session proof that Sweden is establishing itself as an internationnal beer country? We at MankerBeer.com really felt need to check with Sam what is happening over in Delaware since we last visisted and had a beer with Sam in 2011 and managed to catch Sam between all his trips for a quick interview.


MB: The new warehouse is finally on the go, how much does it mean for you and DFH to finally be able to make this expansion?.
SC: It’s critical to our continued growth. Thanks to the grassroots consumer demand dogfish has enjoyed double digit sales growth for 14 straight years but we are out of brewing capacity. Once the new brewhouse an bottling line come on line late Summer we will be able to grow from 200,000 bbls to about 600,000 some day in the future.

MB: With both the Ancient Ales series, but also with other DFH beers you have dared to let the brewers experiment a lot with different ingredients and beer styles; but have you had any plans to brew more traditional European beer styles like gose, steinbeer or maybe a grätzer etc?
SC: We did a smoked-hop goze brewed with Atlantic Ocean water. Also a Sahti, we will continue looking backwards for creative inspiration at the same time we look forwards.

MB: Do you see any trends in what people drink; have we moved from lager beers to hoppier ales and what would the current trend be?
SC: Hop-forward beers will grow for years to come. So will wood aged beers and adventurous beers that have culinary ingredients. Food-centric beers as we like to call them.

MB: Do people dare to try what is “different”?
SC: More and more everyday and the Internet is the catalyst that lets them find, share, and celebrate them.

 You are coming to Stockholm of all places for the Beer Dinner at Oliver Twist together with Pat McGovern. How come the Swedish beer lovers finally will get a chance to try some DFH?
SC:  I have heard greatthings about the Swedish beer and I have know and respected Jorgen for years.

MB:  So what can we expect at the Beer Dinner; what beers will blow our minds?
SC: Everyone has different favorites but Midas Touch is generally the most beloved. The recipe is base on evidence found in a 2700 year old tomb in Turkey believed to belong to King Midas. It has white muscat grapes , wild flower honey and saffron in it.

When we visited the brewery in November 2011, we sat down with you and asked what the perfect cheese pairing would be for the DFH 120 Minute IPA (a strong blue cheese was suggested, and offered), which worked very well. What food and beer pairing would you say is your own favorite?

SC: The easiest winner is a high cocoa content chocolate Barr and a dark toasty stout like our 18 percent abv World Wide Stout.

We greatly appreciate that Sam took some time off to answer our questions and all of you beer geeks out there – be sure to be at Oliver Twist on Thursday. The beer dinner is sold out, but Sam and Pat will answer questions and hang around after the dinner. So see you there!


Posted in MankerBeer Meets:, MankerBeer TalkComments (3)


MankerBeer Meets: Inför Göteborg En Öl & Whiskymässa – mässarrangör Stanley Wong

StanleyMed ett ökat nationellt intresse för öl, vin, sprit och mat så har vi också sett en ökad efterfrågan och ett ökat utbud av olika former av events, mässor och festivaler för just dessa livets njutningar. Ölfestivalerna har blivit allt fler, kanske till och med fördubblats på bara ett år och sist ut, men bland de första på det nya året är En Öl & Whiskymässa som arrangeras på Svenska Mässan i Göteborg. Mässan arrangeras den 12-13 april (fredag 15-23, lördag 13-23) och bakom mässan står den vane mässarrangören Stanley Wong. Redan nu, mer än en månad före mässan är lördagens förköp om 7.000 biljetter slutsålda och till fredagens förköp har det sålts ett par tusen biljetter, med andra ord gäller det att vara ute direkt om ni vill ha en garanterad plats att komma in.

Göteborg skulle i fjol ha haft en ölmässa som efter kommunens direktiv och krav sedan fick ställas in och den mindre ölfestivalen på krogen Haket – Bar och sånt må ha varit lyckad, men det har inte riktigt stillat göteborgarnas suktande efter god öl. Ser man på utställarlistan så är det en imponerande lista för en nystartad mässa och flera av landets mer namnkunniga bryggerier och utställare kommer att vara där tillsammans med flera lokala bryggerier.

I god festivalandra tar vi och frågar mässarrangören vad han ser fram emot med mässan och hur arbetet med att få klart de sista pusselbitarna går – så låt oss presentera Stanley Wong. Förresten, missa inte att följa mässan på Facebook för senaste nytt – ni finner sidan här.


MB: Kort och gott, hur kommer det sig att just du och Svenska Mässan anordnar den här mässan, och just i Göteborg, en stad som länge saknat och haft svårigheter att anordna en liknande öl och whiskymässa?
SW: Jag startade igång Örebro Öl & Whisky Festival 2008 och arrangerar några större dryckesmässor i Sverige. Göteborg är min födelsestad och jag har tillbringat en hel tid här. Jag tyckte att det var på tiden att Göteborg skulle få sin egen öl- och whiskymässa och därför tog jag kontakt med Svenska Mässan och tillsammans lansera vi mässkonceptet En Öl & Whiskymässa.

MB: Såhär nästan två månader innan mässan har redan närmare 7.000 förköpsbiljetter sålts, hur många besökare räknar ni med och hur många finns det kapacitet för?
SW: Ja, det är hur roligt som helst att vi har sålt närmare 7 000 förköpsbiljetter. Vi är både glada och tacksamma för detta stora intresse. Kapaciteten är runt 10-12 000 personer på två dagar. Vi kommer med all sannolikhet sälja slut på förköpsbiljetterna innan mässans start. Däremot kommer vi kunna ta in fler besökare nästa år då vi har bokat upp 8 000 kvm. Man ska inte gapa efter för mycket första året. Det måste ju vara hanterbart.

MB: Redan nu har flera nya och mindre utställare, såsom lokala Poppelmans Bryggeri samt större och mer erkända bryggerier likt Oceanbryggeriet och Dugges presenterats – vilken balans av utställare önskar ni?
SW: Det är precis detta vi vill ha. På vår mässa ska man få ta del av både den stora och den lilla.

öw_liten_negMB: Bland master classes och provningar kommer det också att hållas en bryggarprovning med flera svenska bryggare som deltar och pratar om sina öl, ett väldigt intressant och på många sätt nytt inslag – hur går tankarna vad gäller provningar och master classes?
SW: När det gäller “Bryggaren bakom ölen” så är det Fredrik Berggren, erfaren ölprofil som fick idén efter att ha besökt Great American Beer Festival i Denver, Colorado. Fredrik är ansvarig för alla ölprovningar och kommer även att vara moderator för detta arrangemang. Vi hoppas och tror att detta inslag kommer att uppskattas.

MB: Med ett allt större intresse för öl, mat, whisky och andra njutningar – ökar behovet av att sticka ut och finna något extra eller eget?
SW: Det märks framförallt i marknadsföringen hos många aktörer. Många skapar allt från trendiga etiketter till en speciell image. Det viktigaste är trots allt kvalitén i produkten.

MB: Vad för öl dricker du helst själv?
SW: Jag är en lager-kille men provar gärna lite olika ale då och då.

MB: Om du får välja ett par utställare,öl eller bryggerier att tipsa om lite extra vad vill du lyfta fram då?
SW: Eftersom att jag bor i Örebro så slår jag ett slag för Närkes Kulturbryggeri som sällan är med och står på de mässorna, förutom på Örebro Öl & Whisky Festival. Jag hoppas att det finns några droppar Stormaktsporter med på mässan. Sedan är jag intresserad av Brekeriet och Poppelmans. Självklart finns det också spännande utländsk öl. Bl. a har vi med en utställare som heter Valfjord och de saluför isländsk öl.

MB: Vad i övrigt får man bara inte missa?
SW: Säg så här att jag tycker att man i lugn och ska gå omkring och fråga och låta utställarna, bryggarna berätta om just sina produkter. Alla har något som man inte ska missa.

Stort tack Stanley, och jag hoppas att vi träffar många av er läsare nere på mässan för självklart är vi på plats och flänger runt.

Posted in MankerBeer News, MankerBeer TalkComments (2)


Hey Garrett Oliver, what’s up?

Brooklyn Brewery är alltid aktuella men än mer aktuellt blev bryggeriet tack vare deras rejäla satsning i Stockholm där en form av öl&mat-komplex just nu håller på att byggas tillsammans med Carnegie och Carlsberg Sverige i form av Nya Carnegiebryggeriet Garret OliverMånga i ölsverige blev naturligtvis helt till sig i trasorna av denna storslagna nyhet och så även vi, detta är ett ställe som vi kommer att hänga mycket på när det öppnat, vilket planeras till senare delen under 2013.

Det har rapporterats en hel del kring detta så vi ska inte kika så mycket på det idag utan helt enkelt åter ta en pratstund med Brooklyn Brewery’s head brewer, Garrett Oliver.


MB: Hey Garret! Nice to chat with you again, we had a blast when we met in Stockholm over food, great beers, stories about you trying to steal trains after GABF and the great Cheese Wars afternoon at Restaurangakademin!

We have seen you around in Sweden a few times now, which we think is awesome, it is quite unique for a head brewer at an American craft brewery to come here outside of Stockholm Beer & Whisky Festival – but what are the reasons that you visit us so often?

GO: Magnus, what happens at GABF stays at GABF! Anyhow, that was a long time ago, and I was only going to borrow the train. Yes, I’ve already been to Sweden so many times that the antique glassware dealers in Gamla Stad all know me! And you’ll see a lot more of me soon, that’s for sure. We started in Scandinavia with House of Beer in Denmark after I won the Semper Ardens Pris for Beer Culture in 2004. House of Beer eventually went off the rails in Denmark, but Sweden has become a second home for us. Stockholm has a lot in common with Brooklyn, and you speak better English than we do.

When will we get the chance to see you again in Sweden?

GO: I will be in Stockholm and Göteborg in April, and I’m looking forward to it. I haven’t visited Göteborg, which is hear is a very cool place.


MB: Gothenburg is quite nice, loads of herring and extremely poor puns everywhere. Göteborgsskämt
The beer world in Sweden recently got a lot larger (or smaller?) when the news about the collaboration with Carlsberg/Carnegie and Brooklyn Brewery hit us early January and it became a huge news story both in Swedish and in US media. We already know that Sweden is Brooklyn Brewery’s second largest market after Manhattan, NY, but what else actually triggered these plans and how did it start?

GO: Reviving the Carnegie brand and starting a small brewery has been a dream for Carlsberg’s Joakim Losin for years. He is good friends with our owner/General Manager Eric Ottaway, and they started discussing it seriously over beers more than a year ago. Slowly the whole thing came together, and here we are. Everyone here is really excited about New Carnegie.

Can you let us in a little on the journey from the idea to the press release of this collaboration? How did the process look?

GO: Ha! That would be a very long answer. But Joakim Losin has been the driver of this project from the start. Once he found the site, real planning started with Eric Ottaway. Of course I was mostly concerned with the brewing side, but we’ve been discussing every aspect of the operation there. I want to make sure that we can do some really fun things at New Carnegie, so I’m looking to make sure that our equipment and space are very flexible.


MB: You will have an experimental kitchen at the new brewery in Stockholm, and you are one of the worlds most renowned beer/food pairing evangelists. What is the most common mistake people do when they pair craft beer and food, and what makes a truly great pairing?

GO: Certainly there will be some elements of the “experimental” in the kitchen, but we also just want people to be able to come to New Carnegie, hang out, and enjoy some great food and beer. As for pairing “mistakes”, I do think that beer is usually more forgiving than wine, and it’s easier to find truly great pairings with food. Beer always provides some contrasting elements to food flavors – malt sweetness, bitterness and carbonation are the main elements that contrast. We can stick with contrast, of course, and that can be very pleasant. But the best pairings also contain elements of harmony – parts of the beer’s flavor that echo flavors in the food. And because beer is far more varied in flavor than wine, those harmonies are easier to find.Nya Carnegie bryggeriet


MB: Other craft brewers we have met and spoken to are usually quite impressed over the interest and knowledge of the Swedish craft beer consumer, what’s your thoughts on this?

GO: Well, the Swedish beer consumer has had access to great beer for a long time now, and it’s getting better fast. The Stockholm Beer and Whisky Festival, Akkurat, Oliver Twist – these are institutions that anywhere in the world would be lucky and proud to have. So I’m not surprised that Swedish beer drinkers know their stuff. And having perfect English doesn’t hurt – Swedes have access to a lot of English-language beer writing online. I’m starting to be able to read a lot of Swedish, but I can’t pronounce anything!


MB: There’s a debate, or what you wanna call it, in the US right now in regards to ‘craft beer’ and ‘crafty beer’, where ‘crafty beers’ are basically a copy on craft beer by the huge brewery giants (AB-InBev, Budweiser, Millers) and trying to replicate the craft beers available – what do you think of this and how are the US craft beer industry react to this? [a topic we discussed with Garrett in 2011]

GO: This argument is highly emotional for craft brewers, but it may be producing more heat than light. The basics are simple: there are international brewing conglomerates in our markets who are masquerading as us. They hide their true identities because they know that people like craft brewers and they don’t feel the same about, say, AB-InBev. We find this offensive, but the big brewers say “it’s all about the beer, so let the consumer decide.” I think that the marketing is plainly deceptive, and that bothers me. I am not bothered, however, by the fact that big brewers want to make craft-style beer. In fact, you could argue that they have a responsibility to their shareholders to make craft-style beer, because there will not be any growth in industrial beer. Craft beer is winning, and when you’re winning, people are going to copy you. But that’s not the same as pretending that you’re somebody else.


MB: Brooklyn Brewery suffered from a great loss in 2012, the brewery cat Monster passed away to cat heaven and is probably sipping Brooklyn Brewery Monster Barleywine there instead, any plans for a cool Monster Tribute version or similar tribute?

GO: Yes, we miss Monster greatly, but he had the best life of any cat on the planet, so we try not to be sad about it. He had a great run! I have a few ideas about a tribute, but I will keep them under my hat for now.


MB: What’s your predictions for the beer year 2013? What will be the trends locally and globally?

GO: I get to travel a lot, and what I see is craft beer ascendant all over the world. What people should understand is that the rise of craft beer is not a trend or a fad – it’s a return to normality. The weird period was the middle of the last century, when the United States had only one kind of beer, and Sweden was hardly doing better. Now things are simply returning to normal, and there’s a long way to go still. I think you’ll see continuing interest in IPAs, but also a lot of interest in very flavorful session beers, sours, barrel-aged beers, and beers made with wild yeasts. Of course, all of these are things from brewing’s past. Brewing is like writing music. You have a lot of inspirations, and most of creativity is in dynamic recombination of elements to create something exciting. I’m looking forward to finding new inspirations in Sweden!


MB: Thank you so much for your time, Sweden looks forward to see you again in April!

GO: My pleasure! See you soon!

Garrett kommer till Sverige (Stockholm och Göteborg) i slutet av april, vecka 17. På agendan för Stockholmarna står ännu en härlig tap-take over på Akkurat, ölprovning och middag på Urban Deli samt American TableClarion Hotel Sign och i Göteborg blir det, om allt går som det ska, ett Brooklyn Brewery event på Clarion Hotel Post.

Posted in M2's Corner, MankerBeer Meets:, MankerBeer TalkComments (2)


Manker Beer Meets: Inför Belgoträffen 2013 – Maarten Vanwildemeersch

imagehandlerI år, liksom tidigare år annordnar Svenska hembryggareföreningen sin Belgoträff. Ett evenemang där hembryggare ställer ut sina öl för allmänheten (eller alla över 20 år) att prova, med twisten att alla ölen ska vara belgiska eller franska öltyper. Nu på lördag kommer årets träff att gå av stapeln i Fyrishov (hall D)  i Uppsala (kl. 12-17). Några av landets bästa hembryggare kommer att presentera sina öl och bland gäster och domarna återfinns fler av landets mer namnkunniga belgofiler eller bryggare. I fjol var jag uppbokad på annat när eventet gick av stapeln, vilket jag även är i år då jag ska sitta på ett nattåg till Åre senare samma kväll, men vad gör man inte för att få se svensk öls framtid – så självklart åker jag och M2 dit!

Vad ska man då inte missa, vilka ställer ut, vad bör man tänka på? Vi valde att låta Maarten Vanwildermeersch svara på dessa frågor. Maarten är inte bara väldigt trevlig utan han brygger även öl hos Slottskällans Bryggeri, odlar fram jäst och avslöjar Orvals nuvarande status utan han kommer även att ställa ut i år med flera minst sagt spännande öl.


MB: Kort och gott, vem är du Maarten?

MV: På dagarna är jag bryggare på Slottskällans bryggeri, på kvällarna odlar jag jäst (red: Saccharolicious). Utöver det är jag ordförande i Uppsala hembryggareförening och så brygger jag i min fritid sånt jag inte brygger på jobbet. Som suröl.

MB: Som ‘belgare i exil’ hur ser du på utvecklingen av öl i Belgien?

MV: Det börjar hända saker. Som andra länder med en lång egen ölkultur har belgiska bryggerier varit lite återhållsam med att ta in nya trender. Många belgiska bryggerier är fortfarande väldigt traditionella, men det dyker upp små bryggerier som gör allt möjligt. IPA, stout, fatlagring. Det tycker jag är bra. Ölintresset växer även i Belgien, och många konsumenter upptäcker att det finns mer än bara Duvel på specialölsmarknaden. Det blir roligt att se hur belgare lyckas kombinera tradition och innovation.

MB: Nu är det så årets belgoträff, vad är det bästa med den här träffen?

MV: Det bästa med Belgoträffen är att den blir bättre för varje år 🙂 Fler öl, fler gäster, bättre atmosfär, större lokal. Det brukar vara väldig hög kvalité på öl, så att välja favorit blir nog svårt!

MB: Vad får man inte missa av det du eller andra har med sig?

MV: Jag har inte stenkoll på vad andra har med sig, men de klassiska surölsgudarna (bröderna Andersson och Jakob Carlström) brukar ha med sig något surt som oftast är väldigt bra. Även Lennart Köhler brukar göra stabil öl. Själv har jag en kriek som jag är väldig nöjd med. Och så har jag återskapat en gammal belgisk veteöl, Peeterman, (red: läs mer om öltypen hos Skrubbe.com) som jag tycker är rätt spännande.

MB: Du har börjat experimentera med annars lite ovanliga ölstilar och nyligen gjorde tyska Gänsteller en steinbier till Akkurat, kan vi få se en uppgång för lite mer otraditionella ölstilar tror du?

MV: Jag hoppas det. Det är så otroligt roligt att läsa gamla bryggböcker, och det finns mycket mer att plocka. Gose och Grätzer börja också dyka upp här och där. Kan vi säga att historia är den nya humlen?

MB: Något speciellt man bör tänka på före, under eller efter träffen?

MV: Ät gott innan, så slipper du dricka öl på tom mage. Kom i tid, så du hinner smaka på allt utan att stressa. Prata med bryggarna, säg vad du tycker, ge feedback, ställ frågor. De kan vara väldigt givande för både bryggare och gäster.

Vi tackar Maarten för hans tid och hoppas att ni tar tillfället i akt att besöka Uppsala och inte bara prova schyssta svenskbrygda belgiska öl utan också att få upp ögonen för en annan sida av det om bryggs på hobbybasis runtom i landet.

Posted in MankerBeer Meets:, MankerBeer TalkComments (0)