Wednesday, July 18, 2018

WEEK 134----The black white grey of beer


This is a piece triggered by the Beavertown deal with MACRO giants confirmed last month--not going to focus on the sale---but rather using it as an example to try and take a broader look at why there's this line of separation between MACRO and craft---that every time a craft brewery with nice brew is sold geeks would react.

In fact-i was asked this question not too long ago by a friend who is more of a social drinker---"why do beer geeks care about who owns what?  i mean--do you do that when buying a hand phone ?"
621日对许多啤迷,特别是英伦啤迷来说是个有点遗憾的日子,就在这天英伦明星品牌Beavertown发布声明,证实了之前听到传言说这家Craft酿坊决定把少数股权(49%或以下)卖给大厂啤酒大公司Heineken,以换取四千万英镑投资资金。
消息一出,即刻引来各方反应,有祝贺酿坊的,有觉得未必是坏事的,当然也有骂声四起并宣布从此不再支持的。为什么一家小酿坊卖股权换取投资资金这样在商界司空见惯的生意策略/做法会引起这么两极化/甚至是看来有点过激的反应?
collab such as this will be thing of the past?
This friend has a valid point---how many of us go searching  for info on who owns what before shopping? But--like it or load it---since independence is key to how craft movement/culture came about/ moving forward---to some(if not all) beer geeks---the identity issue is a critical one, and there's a clear line of black or white----playing grey is not gonna work.

"After all---it is just beer."
"I just want a beer---i don't care who owns what"
"When did beer drinking become something you need to make a stand?"
These are some comments often heard whenever there's a sale of craft brewery to MACRO giants--and its very understandable no matter if the person saying that is a craft or non-craft drinker.
one of many independently run UK breweries
another independently run UK breweries
这要从源头说起,以最简化方式来说,啤酒的世界有两个,一个是普罗大众都知道的大厂啤酒(MACRO BEER) ,另一个是比较小众,在亚洲还是少人知道的Craft Beer (大陆港台用词精酿啤酒)。这是两个完全迥异的啤酒世界,大厂啤酒代表了大量生产单调简易口味选择,也代表低成本极大化利益啤酒企业文化,Craft酿坊注重真材实料酿造各种不同风格啤酒提供众多美味层次选择,批量/限量酿造是常态,流水作业大量生产抢占市场不是Craft文化。当然,绝大多数喝酒人不会觉得这两个世界有什么区别,又或者说不明白之间文化差异在哪里,但是对许多啤迷来说,两者之间差异是天地之间距离,也可说是不存在灰色地带的差别。

这次交易出售少数股权(不超过49%),酿坊发布声明强调创办人Logan Plant (殿堂级老牌摇滚乐队Led Zeppelin 主音Robert Plant 儿子)依然拥有控制权/酿酒自由度,意思是虽然拿了人家大厂啤酒钱,但仍自主,从生意角度看,拿少数股权换取资金还保持自主权是非常棒的交易,更何况产量提升,通过大厂啤酒公司行销力量/管道让更多人喝到“算是精酿”啤酒,既帮了自己业务,也让更多一般喝酒人更有机会接触到精酿啤酒,这么好的事情,一切听起来合情合理,可是为什么许多啤迷决定从此唾弃这家酿坊啤酒?
For the uninitiated---a quick and very simple scenario---in the wold of beer---there's 2 side----one is the(mainly) mass produced dull commercial lagers MACRO BEER---another side is the craft beer produced in much much smaller scale where the emphasis is always to seek out deliciousness/ experimental possibilities of a beer. It's obvious these 2 contrasting side of the beer world don't see eye to eye much.
another independently run UK breweries
Actually---one of the main reasons why someone started a craft beer brewery/movement(anywhere in the world it might be) was/is  because he/she can't stand not having better or much better choices when it comes to beers choices available where it's always being flooded with MACRO beers.
啤迷不认同原因包括:-
1)最初会有Craft Beer 出现的动力是因为有人厌倦了市场长期被大厂公司单调无趣千篇一律难喝啤酒霸占现象,于是尝试自酿好喝有趣啤酒,慢慢形成了Craft社区/文化,这是酿酒师/啤迷都有共识的社区/文化,大家因为欣赏好酿坊好酒而聚集起来,大家也有不用明说的默契,一旦任何酿坊决定跟大厂啤酒公司牵手,就等于自动脱离Craft社区/文化。因为,跟大厂啤酒公司的任何交易就像有机农场拿到农药制造商投资或手冲咖啡店拿到星巴克咖啡赞助那样,本质上自相矛盾,完全不对味。

2)大厂啤酒公司极力低成本生产极大化销售利益的企业文化和一些无所不用其极围堵市场/销售管道手法跟Craft 文化背道而驰,在无法通过酿造自家啤酒进入Craft Beer 市场竞争情况下,有什么策略好过收购现有Craft 酿坊?更何况是有一定知名度/口碑的明星品牌来减低近年大厂啤酒销量普遍下跌造成的股价/收益影响,同时也起到一定程度混淆视听作用,形成灰色地带的MACRO CRAFT,表面看起来是精酿品牌但背后是大厂啤酒支持(嗄,我们不只卖单调无趣大厂啤酒,我们也提供Craft选择)。

3)不少之前被收购的Craft 酿坊例子显示,在大企业强调利益最大化,成本尽量低情况下,这些之前强调精酿美味的啤酒都不同程度的走味走样了。

Magic Rock---another independently run UK breweries
Isn't it a good thing when MACRO giants is involved with craft brewery--bigger production, wide distributions meaning more people especially non-craft beer drinkers would have a chance to drink craft brew----but why would beer geeks  still saying NO?

Sure---anyone in business or understand how a business works will know that money is the necessary evil---in this case---BT secured the fund needed for expansion---plan to reach out to much bigger pool of drinkers---and "keeping total control" of the brewery--it's a good deal business wise----but why are geeks keep saying NO?

1) Most if not all of us beer geeks started with MACRO BEER---that's also how many craft brewers started(because we simply didn't know there's another beer world called craft waiting to be explored OR there's not much choices around except those MACRO)---it's kinda like a journey to revolution of beer taste/complexity/deliciousness where craft brewers/breweries are the flag-bearers ---and craft beer lovers are the cheering participants/supporters---there's never a place for the MACRO--but obviously craft beer is also a business and with the fact that MACRO can never enter to compete in the craft beer market with their own beer---what better than buying over the willing to sell craft breweries?
another independently run UK breweries
虽然有点另类,Craft说到底也是生意,任何Craft 酿坊都有不同现实问题和情况要面对,这次英伦酿坊交易当然不会是最后一次看到两个不同理念啤酒世界为利益联手,事实上,很多喝酒人也基本不管谁拥有哪家酿坊,或者说根本不知道/不理会什么是两个理念迥异的啤酒世界,反正,不就只是喝啤酒嘛,有什么那么复杂的?或许就像大多数地球人不懂也未必想了解什么是地球暖化/替代能源对生态人类影响之类的课题那样,大多数喝酒人并不理大厂啤酒和Craft社区/文化之间的黑白界限是不是会让被收购品牌带来的灰色模糊笼罩。不过,对了解并相信Craft社区文化理念的啤迷来说事情其实很简单,那就是,无论大厂啤酒公司砸钱买下多少家Craft品牌抢占市场都好,啤迷都会一视同仁的在两个不同啤酒世界的黑白之间划清界限对被收购的酿坊SAY NO,实际上,单单在英国就有不少保持独立自主的小酿坊在提供高水准酿品,那为什么要让理念不一/利益为主的大厂啤酒公司分一杯羹赚啤迷的酒钱呢?
2) The craft and MACRO scenario is a little similar to your neighbourhood coffee shop//breakfast shop vs the International big chain cafe/restaurants----obviously you can support both but in beer geeks case the choice is obvious--support craft breweries running on their own---not those already gotten fat payment from MACRO giants whose intention is clear ---using a craft brewery to fight a craft war they can never enter with their own brew.

3) One main complaints about MACRO involving with craft brewery is that---somewhere along the line after deal---somehow or rather---the quality of brew of that " once-a craft" brewery will inevitably go down hill---and that's quite sad to see.
how many breweries will trun up come Sept?
跟之前美国酿坊Wicked Weed 被收购时候一样,Beavertown 也有一个办的跟成功的啤酒节,在证实这个交易之前已公布90家参与酿坊名单,不少海外啤迷买了票打算专程飛伦敦参与,不过交易宣布之后已有不少参与酿坊宣布退出,好多买了票啤迷也呼吁主办方退票,这些都在在显示Craft 文化中的不成文规定,“只能是Craft MACRO ,在许多啤迷和酿酒师心目中,两者之间的MACRO CRAFT(大厂拥有或幕后支持“精酿品牌”)这个灰色地带是不受认可的。
BUT---"isn't beer drinking supposed to be social activity that generates happiness? why make it sounding complicated? "

That's of course a valid point---everyone has the choice of just eat drink and be merry---or if you can be like some of us beer geeks who feels the need to draw a line (mainly due to the varieties of deliciousness available in craft beer choices) between the fighting for their own craft breweries OR those joining hands with giants to compete against once craft buddies. End of the day, why gives some of your beer money to the "hired-guns"(sometimes reffered to as "MACRO-CRAFT" knowing some of those money will be flowing to the MACRO giants?


Sunday, June 24, 2018

WEEK 133---A Week in Beer Heaven---Part 2 of 2

Time to conclude the beer heaven trip--a week in Copenhagen may seems short in time frame but it's definitely given us geeks living in craft desert KL plenty to pick and choose, even the luxury of skipping some/many we don't even dream of getting a sip this part of the world.....
MBCC2018
This is the main draw for many geeks who flew in from different corners of the world---2 days 4 sessions---with 100+ breweries--and minimum of each brewery serving 2 different beers/mead/hard cider per session--there's simply way too many to pick/drink--personally i would say it's mission impossible to sip ALL of whatever is serving on site during each session--let alone all 4 sessions.
This year--because 3 of us team up and found a place to sit and enjoy the brew each session--also taking turns to go round getting brew to share--it was more efficient in terms of time management, drink less taste more hence better alcohol tolerance level---on average each session there's about 50(+-) different brew tasted---including some really big hitters--overall it was very manageable--no one was seeing stars or falling off the table.
MBCC会场

在两天四场次的啤酒庆典会场喝酒是件快乐但也有点烦恼的事,因为选择太多了,每个场次100家酿坊都拿出至少两款或更多不同酒,虽说绝大多数啤迷关注的是酿品水准而不是量,依然有太多不同类别风格啤酒选择,全部喝完基本是不可能的任务。两天内当然喝到非常多高水平不同类别风味酿品,从大鸣大放型酿品到内敛含蓄型都有,不过,如果说只凭个人味蕾即场直觉来选四场次喝过最有印象酿品的话,毋庸置疑的两款出色作品是来自美国酿坊3SONS的层次分明迷人黑啤BA SCOOP和酸啤新贵BOKKEREYDER的咖啡果酸啤酒MUTANA GUEUZE,众多佳酿中这两款轮廓鲜明,非常突出,一喝就让味蕾惊艳不已。
It's not easy to pick the most memorable ones( some might call it the best ones) from the hundreds of different styles of brew--obviously there are brew which are loud/in the face type( both in a nice way--or not so nice way)--as well some with subtle nuances which require a little bit more palate appreciation--but if i were to pick straight out from memory(i don't untapdd or RB or BA)---though there's a few, but these 2 very different but distinctively impressive brews immediately came jumping out of the memory box :-
3 sons BA SCOOP   &  Bokkereyder Mutana Gueuze
And obviously i'm a fan of mead/hard cider---the 2 usual suspects--B.Nektar and Superstition obviously been wowing geeks old and new since they took part in the fest--this year is no exception-- i definitely enjoyed sipping on the delicious but rather high ABV mead from these guys---who could resist a brew like B.Nektar's Gin BA Orange Blossom or Ginger Peach Cyser? or Supertition's  Grand Cru Berry or Saturnalia?  

众多不同风格啤酒之外,场内也有蜜酒(MEAD/轻度水果蜜酒(HARD CIDER)酿坊,来自美国的B.NEKTAR SUPERSTITION是庆典常客,不例外的带来一些顶级佳酿,另一家听说过但没真正喝过的RABBIT’S FOOT 也在场,喝了些不同类作品,其中酒精度高达18%CHOCOLATE RASPBERRY LOVE(巧克力覆盆子蜜酒)“非常危险”的可口易喝,另外几款用不同水果如黑莓,蓝莓,柠檬等入味的轻度水果蜜酒也清爽美味。
Well---this year Rabbit's Foot was there--tasted some and loving it--there's the fruits influenced lighter abv cyser( cheery/lemon/ blueberry..) as well a lovely but dangerously easy sipping 18% Chocolate Raspberry Love,  
Bottle Logic tap takeover @Warpigs
Tap takeover activities has been a big attraction for geeks flying in earlier during the week( those who were at 2016 Hillfarmstead tap takeover event can testify to that)--this year we went to the TTO by BL---it was much smaller in terms of on tap or bottles selection (if were to compare to 2016 scale)---but for those who don't live close by to BL in the states--this is as good as it gets though some of their famous dark brews like the fundamental series were missing from the line up--shared a bottle of Red Eye November--it was boozy even after warming up--bourbon barrel influence and alcohol traces were obvious---a little disappointing really.  BUT--the Berliner Weisse on tap was a pleasant surprise(s)-Berliner Equation with Cherry( the name says it all)--and Muscle & Mayhem(with Coconut & Pineapple & Bananas) were tasting deliciously sour and fresh with nuances---hands down pick of that event.
BOTTLE LOGIC占领啤酒泵活动

#啤酒天堂能吸引啤迷提前好几天到这个城市的主要诱因是整个星期的不同酿坊占领啤酒泵/新酒推介/品酒会活动,比如在WARPIGS酿吧进行的美国人气酿坊BOTTLE LOGIC小型占领啤酒泵活动,意外的是这次BL并没有推出受几款最受追捧黑啤。以当天的一瓶高评分黑啤RED EYE NOVEMBER来说,放一旁回温後波本桶影响和酒精味依然明显,个人觉得并不出色。不过,没期待下喝的两款不同德式水果酸啤则又酸又鲜简直太好喝,其中BERLINER EQUATION WITH CHERRY酸中带微甜,MUSCLE & MAYHEM酸爽中有椰味和黄梨,以黑啤受人追捧的BOTTLE LOGIC酸啤酿的这么高水平还真是意外惊喜。
Beer searching @Himmeriget
This is a place known to many geeks as The place to sip on that seemingly elusive blueberry lambic by Cantillon---but it's a place much more than just Blabaer--the bottle list with varieties of styles available to drink on site is impressive---we were there more than once--and obviously found some really tasty, godly ones---as well as missing out on some.
Among others(lots of fresh neipas for the week) ---some of what was found/tasted either from bottles or on tap includes :-
Evil Twins Michigan Maple Jesus
Side Project Pulling Nails
Jackie O's Bourbon Barrel Oro Negro
Jester's King Spon series Peach & Appricot, Blended Sour 2016. Fentao Blend 4, Atrial Rubicite Blend 7, Montmorency vs Balaton Blend 4
Westbrook Gose
Cantillon Iris 2013- Nath 2017-Blabaer 2016
3 Fonteinen Hommage
some really tasty treats/ hard to find ones up there which we thoroughly enjoyed --but we did managed to find a really special one---and a Special mentioning needed for this one:-
3 Fonteinen Zenne Y Frontera---what a heavenly treat--the complexity--the layering--the balance---this one go straight up to TOP 3 Lambic ever tasted so far(well---not that i have had that many opportunities to taste that many different lambics living here in craft desert).
As for some that got away for some reasons at that time(pricing and so on) were:-
Westbrook Mexican Cake Reserve
Westbrook Mexican Cake Double Chocolate Bourbon BA
Side Project Derivation(plus a BA version and collab version--Appervation with Jackie O's)
惊喜喝到至今最佳三甲之一
HIMMERIGET2016年开业以来,是不少啤迷心目中哥本哈根必到啤点,除了因为有机会喝到比利时大师级天然发酵果酸啤酒酿坊CANTILLON为这家酒吧每年特酿的蓝莓酸啤,也因为瓶子清单中有相当多比利时和美国酿坊酸啤/黑啤类别难寻佳酿。到城里的第一天我们下午就去了,除了因为有啤酒泵版本的美国酿坊JESTER KING四款佳酿,更重要的是因为知道瓶子清单内肯定找得到非一般美味选择。

当天从瓶子清单中选了几款包括EVIL TWINMICHIGAN MAPLE JESUS黑啤,JESTER KING SPON系列的PEACH & APRICOT,也找到美国酿坊SIDE PROJECT出名难寻酸啤PULLING NAILS等高水平作品分享,不过,要说当天最让人一入口就难忘的一支肯定非比利时酸啤宗师3 FONTEINEN酿坊的ZENNE Y FRONTERA莫属,是美味层次让人惊叹的LAMBIC作品,也是个人至今喝过最佳酸啤三甲之一。
Lambic/beers sipping @Koelschip  +Mikkeller & Friends
Also been hanging out here a few times during the week---firstly because there's Bokkereyder bottles to be opened---and of course there's many other choices--and Mikkeller & Friends is just next door--so plenty of different styles choices if that's what you need.
When we hit Koelschip--there's mini tap takeover by Jester King with Spon series on tap---also few sessions of pre-sold out Bokkereyder tasting events going on for those who bought a ticket.
had a few bottles/on tap beers here during 2 visits--among others:-
Jester King Spon series #1-5
Side Project Tete de Cuvee 2015
Bokkereyder Perzik 2015-Pjassel 2017-Zommersaison2017--Wijngaard Melange 2016
高水平选择
一周内在这三家都喝到好些高水平酸啤,比如第二次去HIMMIRIGET喝的美国酿坊著名德式酸咸啤WESTBROOK GOSE,比利时3 FONTEINEN致敬作品HOMMAGE,啤酒泵版本的CANTILLON IRIS 2013。也去了另一家城中最新(主攻)酸啤吧1420(去之前两天还在装修赶开业),有手拉式啤酒泵(酒体口感更顺滑)啤酒供应,喝了几款包括手拉的CANTILLON 当然也不会不去KOELSCHIP喝些BOKKEREYDER不同风味瓶子,例如使用比利时著名SAISON 酿坊FANTOME酿品玩变奏的ZOMERSAISONMELANGE(不同桶陈)版本WIJNGAARD等等。

 后记:-
每年当哥本哈根变身啤酒天堂那一周是身处CRAFT BEER沙漠的我们几个本地啤迷(其实也是不少亚洲其他城市啤迷朋友)的期盼和“救赎”,在天堂一周所能喝到的佳酿足以让人回味许久,虽不能抵一年之渴,但绝对能提升啤迷味蕾鉴赏力和眼界,实际上,只有喝过非常高水平作品才能体会什么是不同美味层次境界,而这些都不是看书看酒评或听人说能真正理解的,只有亲身体会,才能领会个中奥妙。
The best part about hanging around Koelschip is that there's Mikkeller & Friends just next door for non-lambic related styles choices---there's some tasty neipas, stouts and much more if that's your cup of beer---and i did found one of the best stouts of the week during the mini tap takeover by The Veil--Frederiksdal cherry wine barrel aged Sleeping Forever on the last evening of drinking before leaving beer heaven.
Tap takeover by Other Half/FinBack/Kane & Modern Times & J.Wakefield @MikkellerViktoriagade
Held on different days---these are obviously a treat regardless if you love NEIPAs or big stouts---this is one place that's almost like a base camp to report to whenever we hit town during MBCC week regardless if there's an event going on or otherwise---obviously we were here a few times---did not open any bottles here since there's already plenty to choose from the tap but was given 2 opened bottles--a Side Project Merci and Mikkeller George vs Brian Calvados BA courtesy of a total stranger one evening..:) 
Chilling at Fermentoren
This place can be very chill sitting inside when it's not busy which was the case when we visited as most people were taking advantage of the surprisingly hot weather during that week in Copenhagen by sitting outside--the tap selection is always decent to say the least--there's bottle selections too but we were basically chilling at that time of visit so that's that.
1420--bar with no clear signage
1420 was still rushing to get ready during the few few days of the week---think we visited on a Wednesday (or was it Thursday) to this newest addition to the CPH bar scene--for the uninitiated--this is a bar focusing on most thing Belgium--obviously including Lambic. There's a few Cantillon on tap when visited--with hand pumps version available. Of course there's bottle list too---only thing about this place if you are visiting for the first time like we did--if you are walking on the opposite side of the street and don't look hard enough--you could miss out the bar easily since the signature was hand written on  a piece of wooden door laying on the side of entrance--no sight of a bar except for some people who were standing outside drinking/chatting/smoking.... :)

To sum it up a week in beer heaven is perhaps a little short but for any beer geeks who yet to visit Copenhagen during that crazy week--you should do it at least once--it's different hearing from anyone about their experiences at the beer heaven--the best way is to experience it yourself--only then you will know what it's like being there for the week.

Sunday, June 10, 2018

WEEK 132----A week in beer heaven---Part 1 of 2

Some of us geeks buddies were kinda half jokingly saying that if not because of craft beer, would not have thought of coming back to Copenhagen year after year or whenever possible--especially during THAT WEEK of the year.
哥本哈根是CRAFT BEER重点城市之一是毋庸置疑的事,当每年一次的哥本哈根啤酒庆典(MBCC)到来时,这城市更会在那星期变身为实质意义更上几层楼的“啤酒天堂”。
“顽啤主张”和几位本地啤迷今年再度去啤酒天堂走走喝喝,一周有那么多佳酿等着发现品嚐在亚洲是件只能想象的事,不过,在那一周一切都是真实的,除了星期五/六的啤酒庆典活动,这城市还有好多占领啤酒泵/新酒首卖会/品酒活动等着啤迷参与。
Copenhagen is undoubtedly one of the most happening craft beer cities in Europe---but come that week of the year when MBCC/ MBW is happening--CPH literally becomes a beer heaven(at least that's what some of us geeks agreed on).

So this year from craft desert KL there's the same 3 of us who went in 2016 did the same again--spending roughly a week in beer heaven---here's the First Part of what was seen/done/drank/visited...
MBCC 2018( 2 days 4 sessions)
The line during first day morning session was as usual--people were queuing up early to get in before 10am( if you hold a Gold ticket)--and 10am if you hold the Pink or Yellow ticket---i was lining up around 9.50am--it was stretching from entrance to main street and onto the side street--but the line was moving pretty fast---evidently the venue space being utilized this year is much bigger than during 2016 (the first year where the event was moved from the much smaller old gymnasium during when it was still being called CBC) 
#作为一周重头戏, 周五/六的24场次啤酒庆典(MBCC)吸引各路啤迷/酿酒师来聚,会场外一早排起人龙(人群疏散进场时间其实蛮快),场内到处人头攒动,不过因为安排得宜,有够多长桌子长凳子给啤迷坐着喝,也把100家酿坊按区分布在会场不同角落,大大舒缓了拥挤感,坐在场内感觉舒适,至于是要快节奏赶着喝更多不同款啤酒还是稍微慢点节奏喝都看个人决定。因为基本都跟两位同行的本地啤迷一起“分工合作”大家轮流去各酿坊摊位领酒分享喝,喝少(量)尝多(款)情况下,那么多不同类别风格啤酒/蜜酒选择情况下,还是喝的非常惬意。

There's a lot more long tables/chairs for drinkers to sit( unlike 2016 when space is smaller/ tables & chairs are limited and mainly "reserved" for "serious beer analysts"/tickers)--and a sensible arrangement of splitting up the hundred breweries into different corners of the venue---by doing this, though the crowd is big, there's still a relaxing mood within the busy hall---though i guess it's partly individual choices as well--in that whether you were in a hurry to keep chasing glass after glass or perhaps like the 3 of us( and many others) who sit as a group and takes turn to go pick up beer/mead/hard cider and share the load( which is more chill way of drinking less in volume but a lot more in varieties).
Will talk a little about some brews which really stood out for me during the 2 days 4 sessions( as well the whole week of drinking at different places) in Part 2 --for now--for this year's fest---these are some observations/ thoughts:-
The GOOD
1) nice touch of providing lots of long tables/chairs for people to sit/rest their glasses/legs/liver/ or to crash out.....:)
2) dividing the over 100 breweries into different corners of the hall--though some might complaint that it's time consuming/tiring to run from one end to another to get drinks--i'm all for it--it spread out the crowd--overall the hall felt a lot less congested than 2016. 
3) Choices a plenty--you gets to decide if you want to wait in a queue for a pour from names like The Veil/ Bokkereyder/Omnipollo and so on where there's always a long line of people waiting or go pick up something else
4) The Cheers---yes--every time you hear a loud cheers somewhere in the hall you know someone broke a glass(it also perhaps meaning 100 dkk for a new glass should you need one)--it's probably adding salt to wound for the guy/lady who broke the glass but it was good fun( if you don't happened to break yours).
The NOT so good
1) Going to the toilet inside hall can be too funky for anyone's liking--well-- we all understand the call of nature is irresistible but those cry of " stouts shit" perhaps could be avoided or lessen if those with "Lactose Intolerance" could somehow dump their load first before coming to the fest? ( no? :)
2) The temperature of pour---it's kinda standard temp for all( correct me if i'm wrong) regardless of varieties(it's perhaps something technically complicated to serve at different temp for so many varieties of styles during a fest) ---while some are nice to drink soon--some obviously needed some "hatching time " to get warmer to appreciate better.
3) Too many choices---it's a good point and yet also a not so good point---the argument is that if we were to spread out the few hundreds brews into say tap takeover at the local bars over few months--then people will be more relax( as in not rushing to tick ;) to appreciate better flavours of the brews--but in a crazy fest like this--within 4 hours to try and taste as many brew one could manage is at times a little too luxury an experience.
The 5TH SESSION
If you hold a Gold ticket--not only you will get a different color glass( obviously gold)--but also entitled for a limited to gold only 5th session on Sunday--it was basically a session where one can drink the left overs from the 2 days fest plus some new kegs.
It's certainly a very chill session--with very few geeks inside the perhaps 1/5 or 1/6 space used as compared to Fri/Sat--you can pour yourself too if you so wishes--it's kinda like a Sunday beer buffet--but a nice one where you can drink some fresh Monkish/Other Half/BisselBrother/BottleLogic or VietnameseSpeeway.....
#啤酒庆典门票都只能网上预购,除了分为单场票和四个场次都可去的粉红票之外,也有能比所有人提早20分钟进场先喝的金色门票选择。既是金色,当然更贵,除了有金杯子早进场之外,星期天更有只限金色门票持有人能去的“第五场”任意喝星期五/六两天庆典剩余的酒加一些新酒,因为人数明显少很多,会场变得像是朋友家开派对自助餐那样轻松自在,很多摊位啤酒泵都是转过来面向喝酒人,可以自己随意拿酒喝。对前两天已经喝过很多心头好的人来说,“第五场”的酒款依然不错,比如说在美国本土每次开售都排长龙的NEIPA新贵MONKISH有两款新鲜“类果汁印度淡啤”可随便喝,美国出名黑啤如SPEEDWAY STOUT有越南咖啡豆版本,还有啤迷追捧的美国酿坊BOTTLE LOGICBISSEL BROTHER等等。
BAGHAVEN
It's a little far from down town but very cozy since it's facing the water way--on the day we went--there's boxes upon boxes of The Alchemist variants waiting to be picked up--kinda like when you walk in a neighbourhood convenience store to pick up a regular can of beer---but hey--we are talking about the likes of Focal Banger--Heady Topper & Crusher--available right in front of us! and this is  exactly one of many reasons why this town can be such beer heaven during the week.
This place is essentially the barrel room for Baghaven beers--though there's also a taproom serving on tap not only their own beers but the likes of Jester King, as well bottles selections from Hillfarmstead and Side Project---with a few food trucks around on the day we visited---never mind that we needed taxi to get in out of here(though some cycled here)--- this is a cool place to sit and spend some time drinking awesome beers.
#THE ALCHEMIST是美国最具代表性的IPA(印度淡啤)酿坊之一,HEADY TOPPER更是经典代表作,因为产量不多,除非是在酿坊所在的VERMONT区,美国境内其他地方很难看到踪迹,虽说近年因为扩展开始有比较大供应量,但能在哥本哈根“米记”旗下藏酒仓库/酒吧BAGHAVEN(有点远但非常舒适的点)看到一箱箱HEADY TOPPER FOCAL BANGER CRUSHER这三款鼓励“DRINK FROM CAN”的盛名罐装IPA等啤迷带走,笑说这简直就像街坊便利店买罐装啤酒那么垂手可得的同时,不得不赞叹这城市在这一周变身啤酒天堂的魅力,这种级别的罐装啤酒一箱箱摆着等啤迷带回家绝不是天天能有的事。
其实,就算没有这些盛名IPA罐子出售,BAGHAVEN也是值得啤迷来的点,因为面向河道流水,也有宽敞户外空间可坐着喝,当天也有几辆餐车卖不同食物佐酒,啤酒选择方面除了有自家同名酿品可喝之外,也包括美国酿坊JESTER KING不同酸啤,瓶子选择更有几款HILLFAMRSTEADSIDE PROJECT等盛名难寻美国酿坊瓶子可以现场开喝。
Mikkeller & Friends + Koelschip
When you are in Copenhagen--there's more than a few Mikkeller related bars to go for---those 2 mentioned above were the ones we spend the last evening in Copenhagen for a farewell session--and a damn good one too---it was the evening where The Veil was having a mini tap takeover at Mikkeller & Friends--and because there's always such a long queue for The Veil during Fri/Sat sessions--we did not get to drink much of what was available then--hence this mini tap takeover was an appropriate occasion to sample some--and what a pleasant surprise it was---i did bumped into one of most delicious stouts so far--The Veil Sleeping Forever BA Frederiksdal--a cherry wine barrel aged imperial stouts---felt as if sipping on condensed cherry juice with thick but pleasant(not overly sweet or bitter) liquefy dark chocolate---it's the kind of brew where after the first & second sip you go like "wooooo..."(for the record---while in the past 3 years or so i been so used to drinking small sharing portion--this one was so tasty that i decided to re-order a glass full for my own and sipping it away that night).
#啤酒庆典主办方MIKKELLER(简称“米记”)旗下有不少酒吧,除了本店,在城市另一头有“米记和朋友”和隔壁专攻酸啤的KOELSCHIP,这家酸啤酒吧除了好多比利时和美国酿坊酸啤选择之外,还有比利时酸啤混酒作坊新贵BOKKEREYDER专门提供只限店内开喝的不同款瓶子选择。告别哥本哈根前一夜,去了当天有美国炙手可热新酿坊THE VEIL迷你占领啤酒泵活动的“米记和朋友”喝些两天庆典中因为人太多放弃排队而没什么喝到的THE VEIL不同款啤酒,其中一款经过樱桃酒木桶陈放熟成的黑啤,一入口就让人惊艳不已,感觉像喝着醇香黑巧克力樱桃果液(结果少有的买多一杯再慢慢细味),两者之间相互融合却又层次分明,绝对是至今喝过最精彩黑啤之一。当天也少不了从隔壁酸啤酒吧开支MELANGE(不同酒桶陈放混合)版本BOKKEREYDER酸啤为这次啤酒天堂之旅圆上味蕾幸福一周句号。
The night (and the week in beer heaven) ended with a sharing bottle of Bokkereyder taken from next door Koelschip --*will be talking more about Koelschip and what we drank there in Part 2( as well some memorable ones + where else we went drinking)