Brasserie De La Senne – Impressions from Brussels

De La Senne Taras BoulbaI was in Brussels this weekend, and I think I’m going to write a few little “postcards” from important places in Brussels. Our trip had two main purposes: To visit Cantillon and 3 Fonteinen, and to drink a lot of fresh and delicious De La Senne beer. We succeeded.

While much Belgian beer is sweet and strong, De La Senne have almost found their own niche with low alcohol, golden hoppy ales. There are a few other breweries who are brewing some nice hoppy pale ales, and saison is making a come back, but De La Senne have perfected this kind of beer. Læs mere Brasserie De La Senne – Impressions from Brussels

New Beer of the Year 2015, Danish Beer Blog Awards

The Beertalk New Beer of the Year 2015 is from Amager BryghusIt’s time to celebrate the New Beer of the Year 2015. Officially, what we’re doing is the best new Danish beer, but that doesn’t matter since my two top beers of the year are both brewed in Denmark. They are in fact very closely related, and I love them for the same reason. They are: Amager Batch 1000, and Amager/Oppigårds Building Bridges. Amager Bryghus got a lot of love when the Danish beer bloggers named the Danish Brewery of the Year, and now it’s my turn to show my love.

I like my IPAs dry and hoppy, and Amager Bryghus have perfected their beers to match my tastebuds. When you look at the top IPAs at Ratebeer there are quite a few that I would call too sweet and not bitter enough, and although these beers are bursting with amazing hop aroma, I also want my throat tickled with bitterness when I drink an IPA.

Læs mere New Beer of the Year 2015, Danish Beer Blog Awards

Danish Brewery of the Year 2015, Danish Beer Blog Awards

Ølsnedkeren, Danish Brewery of the Year 2015Picking the Danish Brewery of the Year 2015 turned out to be a somewhat difficult task. There are many candidates, and no clear stand-out. In the end, I went with my personal beer drinking experience in the past year.

The Danish Beer Blog Awards is much less pompous than it sounds. It’s simply a matter of Danish beer bloggers agreeing that in this week we will write about what was great in the past year. Five different categories in the next five days. I’ll be linking the other blogs participating on beertalk’s Facebook page as they are published.

Læs mere Danish Brewery of the Year 2015, Danish Beer Blog Awards

Hop harvest in Poperinge

Ready for the hop harvest at hop farm t'Hoppecruyt in Poperinge, BelgiumThe hop harvest has to be one of the highlights on a beer lover’s bucket list. Earlier this year, I could finally tick that box. Rewind the calendar to mid-September. Sunday afternoon, the Visit Flanders press tour is visiting the Hop Museum in Poperinge, and the next morning, we take off to one of the hop farms to see the hops and the hop harvest.

Benedikte Desmyter of t'Hoppecruyt talking about the hop harvest
Benedikte Desmyter of t’Hoppecruyt talking about the hop harvest

The press tour was carefully planned to coincide with the time of the hop harvest, and it was a great bonus to combine a beer trip to one of the world’s classic beer countries with a visit to the hop fields. The place we visited was the hop farm t’Hoppecruyt, which is open to visitors in smaller or larger groups. Benedikte Desmyter, fourth generation owner, gave us an excellent tour of the place. Læs mere Hop harvest in Poperinge

Poperinge Hop Museum

The Poperinge Hop Museum
The Poperinge Hop Museum

Poperinge is the center of the Belgian hop growing area, and as such, it’s natural that you would find a hop museum here. Poperinge Hop Museum is an interesting little exhibition in a very exciting building. In the 19th century, hops had to be brought to the communal storage, where they would be weighed and quality checked by the authorities. That is the building that houses the museum today, and that’s a big part of the experience.

Hops can be grown in a broad belt spanning between latitudes 35 and 55 degrees, north or south of the equator, though in Europe, it’s limited to a few small areas. In Belgium, hop growing has diminished to almost nothing compared to a hundred years ago. In 1900, 2200 ha. was used for hops, with more half of it being in the Aalst area,  and most of the rest in Poperinge. In 1980 there were still 800 ha., but today, the figure is just 160 ha. and 98% of it is in Poperinge. Læs mere Poperinge Hop Museum

Hophead? A few words on IPA freshness

Ugly Duck Amarillo Citra IPA bottled four days before the blog was written. IPA doesn't always have to be quite that fresh though, but IPA freshness matters.
Ugly Duck Amarillo Citra IPA bottled four days before the blog was written. IPA doesn’t always have to be quite that fresh though!

If you’re a true hophead and love the smell and taste of a well hopped IPA, you’re better off enjoying it under ideal conditions. Which basically means: As fresh as possible! I wrote this blog Saturday afternoon in Danish, and I thought it was good enough to share with an international audience too.

If one single beer style leads the way for the current global beer revolution, it’s probably the IPA. The India Pale Ale takes it name from a beer in 19th century England, but to be frank, it doesn’t have much more than the name in common.

Læs mere Hophead? A few words on IPA freshness

Borefts Beer Festival 2014

Christian Scheffel enjoying a Tilquin Gueuze at Borefts Beer Festival 2014
Enjoying a Tilquin Gueuze

This weekend I was at Borefts Beer Festival, the De Molen festival in Bodegraven, Holland. It was the fifth time I attended with beer loving friends from Odense. I wrote about the 2013 festival in some of the first entries on this blog, going carefully through what my favourite brewers had to offer. This year I’ll do it all in a single blog about the good and bad at the 2014 festival, rather than a long list of great beers.

Borefts Beer Festival has evolved over the years and there have been changes every year. The past few years, the geographical lay-out of the festival has had to change every year, to accomodate more and more guests. This year it was all in one place, in and around the new brewing facilities. Much better than having the festival split up in two locations across the road, but also pretty crowded at times.  Læs mere Borefts Beer Festival 2014