Craft beers come from small independent brewers and are shaking up the beer world. Their desire is to make a great beer using traditional ingredients while at the same time creating very different tastes and sensations. Since last week was Craft Brewers Week in the US I thought it only fitting to take a look at the Craft Beer craze that is crossing the oceans into Europe!
Here are two countries, Italy and Czech Republic, that are feeling the affects of the Craft Brew sensation.
I know, Italy is known for its wine but it is also becoming known for its beer. In fact, over the last few years craft breweries in Italy have grown tenfold! So next time you’re in Italy you might just want to stop by a few brew pubs to get in on all the action.
- Sitting 60 km south of Turin is tiny Piozzo. Making quite a stir in the craft beer world is Birrificio Le Baladin where the beers do not necessarily hold to normal beer protocols. Try a Nora which is flavored with myrrh and ginger or maybe their unusual barleywine.
- Moving to the Lake Como area is Lurago Marinone and the Birrificio Italiano, the oldest craft brewery in Italy. Besides the standard brews, this brewery is famous for its unfiltered Pilsner known as Tipopils. Tasting this cloudy pilsner is a must if you’re in the area.
- If sours are your favorite then you must stop by Birrificio Torrechiara! Although the brewery is known for its wine barrel-aged beers it is the Panil Bariqueé Sour which has made it famous. If you’re in Parma, this is another “must have” beer!
While Pilsner and Budweiser are king in the Czech Republic it is the craft brew that is making the most noise today! Yes the number of taps is growing in the Czech Republic.
- Near Plzen is Modrá Hvezda Dobrany. This small independent brewery has a long history of beer making. Beer has been brewed here since 1378 but this brewery didn’t enter the craft brewing world until 1998. Those in Dobrany say the water here is better than in Plzen and we all know “It’s the water”!
- A short train ride from Prague takes you to Berounský Medvĕd home to small craft brewery offering superb unfiltered beer, tours and food. The beer tradition at Berounský dates back to 1295. Beer was brewed here until 1978 and after a 20 year hiatus, Mrs. Mayer reopened the brewery that is today known for its good beer!
- Southwest of Prague is Pivovarsky Dvůr Chýnů a young brewery known for its unfiltered and unpasteurized beer. Well known by beer lovers, Pivovarsky Dvůr Chýnů not only offers a light and Amber beer but their Ale and Ginger beer are also a favorite.