December 7th – A Word On Beers X-mas Calendar

December 7th and this is what was in my two X-mas calendars:

🎄The Great Mikkeller X-mas Calendar🎄

Trippelbock Frederiksdal Cherries by Mikkeller – The deep red, almost purple color of this beer is amazing. Cherry aroma is fruity and sweet with an almond-like note. Taste is a bit acidic like a wine, but with a little of that trippelbock sweetness to back it up. The acidity makes this beer quite drinkable being a trippelbock and the 12.9% ABV considered. This is one of the tastiest trippelbocks I have ever had! 

🎄My wife’s homemade X-mas calendar🎄

Tizzle Tazzle By Duckpond Brewing – Huge blackcurrant and raspberry aroma with a slight yogurt note. Loads of raspberries, blueberries and blackcurrants and pronounced acidity. This is a very nice fruited Berliner Weisse with next to no bready wheat flavor. This is nordic summer in a glass. Pro-tip for this beer: Let the beer warm a bit to have the full taste-experience and a fuller mouthfeel.

It’s a bit crazy how the two calendars can keep giving me beers that are so close to each other flavor-wise. Today’s beers are no exception since they are both fruited beers with some kind of red berries. Tizzle Tazzle is a super tasty beer with amazing fruit flavors and really one that I would like to try on a hot summer day. Trippelbock Frederiksdal Cherries is loaded like crazy with the super tasty cherries from Frederiksdal. and is fruity like few. Bock and trippelbock in particularly is normally not something that I like very much, but this cherry-loaded one is a very tasty beer. Forced to choose one of the two I think I’ll have to choose Tizzle Tazzle since I find it more balanced and with a super tasty berry-flavor. 

All through December, I’m opening my two X-mas beer calendars. The two calendars are The Great Mikkeller X-mas Calendar and my wife’s homemade X-mas calendar.

See you tomorrow!

Aarhus – Worth a visit?

Back home from my Baltic Sea adventure I had to go somewhere else to enjoy a great beer at a bar. Where I live is kind of a dry spot in craft beer bars. Only a short train ride away is Aarhus, Denmark where multiple craft beer bars are available.

First place to visit in this case was Mikkeller Bar Aarhus in Jægergårdsgade. Jægergårdsgade is a street buzzing with life from cafes, restaurents and bars. Mikkeller Bar Aarhus is the usual relaxed and welcomming Mikkeller Bar atmosphere and you immediately feel like this is a great place to lean back and enjoy a beer or three.

If you do not like the beers served in Mikkellers Bar Aarhus you can go next door to the bottle shop and find loads of great beers to bring home.

I have been to Mikkeller Bar Aarhus more than a few times (some of it here) and super tasty beers are always available. Is it worth a visit? Without a doubt this is a great bar and I have never been disappointed by the beers. The staff is always nice and knows a thing or two about the beers they are serving. This is a bar that I will like to return to again and again.

Are there any other great craft beer bars in Aarhus? Yes…more than one great craft beer bar is within walking distance from Mikkeller Bar Aarhus. Mig & Ølsnedkeren is always worth going to. 20 taps of great beers from all around the world and always a few taps with their own tasty beers. I enjoy going to Mig & Ølsnedkeren and have a beer or two with friends or going to one of their many tap takeovers.

Other great places to go for craft beer in Aarhus are Highlanders Bar, where I come for a beer every now and then. Erlings Jazz- og Ølbar – a cozy little bar with jazz music and concerts every Wednesday. I have been there a few times and I have never been disappointed eventhough the taplist is a bit shorter than at the other craft beers in Aarhus.

I know there are more craft beer bars in Aarhus and within a few weeks the Danish brewery Åben will open a bar in Aarhus. That a places I’m really looking forward to visit.

See you soon!

Stockholm – beer heaven?

Last stop on our journey partly around The Baltic Sea and back is Stockholm. Staying on Södermalm we had every opportunity to drink great beers. Our hotel was just around the corner – or two, maybe three blocks – from Mikkeller Stockholm. That left us we no choice but going there more than once during this stay in this very welcoming city.

Mikkeller Stockholm is very clearly a Mikkeller bar… The interior decoration is simpel but still inviting and makes you feel at home. This time we arrived around dinner time and decided to have some ‘Danish Smørrebrød’. To accompany this tasty dinner we had some IPA, berliner weisse and saison – all great beers with a lot to offer in a super hot Swedish summer evening.

Not far from Mikkeller Stockholm we found Omnipollos Flora where we decided to round of the evening with a beer or three. Omnipollos Flora is a summer Pop-up venue/beer garden in the Humlegården park in Stockholm serving food, icecream and Omnipollo beers. I was lucky enough to put my hand on a soft serve version of one of the beers. For those not knowing it, Omnipollo is known for their soft serve beers. Soft serve is a way of serving the beers with kind of a slush-ice on top. It is a super smooth way to enjoy the beers. I haven’t had a single bad soft serve beer from Omnipollo…and I have had more than a few. To know more about the beers we had and to have a look at this cozy place and the beers I enjoyed, this is the place to look.

The next day we went out to see some more sights in Stockholm and planned to hit Omnipollos Hatt around noon to have beer and lunch. Omnipollos Hatt makes some crazy great pizzas and the beers are tasty too. We found a seat in the sun outside the bar on an even hotter Swedish summer day. We went for a soft serve Moa Lemon Curd Sour and a juicy hazy pale ale – both great choices in the heat. Both of the beers went well with the super tasty pizzas. If you decide to pay Omnipollos Hatt a visit, be sure to do it when you are hungry for some pizza.

After some post-lunch sightseeing we ended up returning to Mikkeller Stockholm for dinner and some more beers. I’m sure I could visit this bar hundreds of times without growing tired of it . This time we tried the variations of ‘smørrebrød’ that we didn’t try the day before – again very tasty food that can easily compete with the Danish originals. To wash down the food we had a fruity juicy berliner weisse, a lambic brewed for the bar and a hoppy sour ale. All great beers to finish this Baltic beercation.

Stockholm is in my opinion worth a visit to drink great beers. I have been here more than once now and I’m not finished at all. Stockholm is definitely a place I want to go back to. There are still a lot of great beer places I haven’t visited and the ones I visited are all worth a revisit.

This is all from this fantastic summer of beer and traveling. Soon I’ll return with other beer matters of great importance. See you!

Turku – mediocre beers?

On our way back to Denmark we had a short stop in Turku, Finland. It was as super hot Finnish summer day, when we arrived in Turku. We dropped off our bags at the AirBnB place and went out to explore Turku. On our way we stumbled across Panimoravintola Koulu where we had lunch and a beer. Panimoravintola Koulu had a very nice beer garden in which we enjoyed beers and burgers. I could imagine this being a busy place in the evening and the beer I had was nice. If the pilsner I had was the image of the rest of the Panimoravintola Koulu beers, then this brewery/brewpub is worth another visit.

Being in Turku only one day we moved on to see some of the local sights. Before returning to our airBnB we went to another bar – The Old Bank. The Old Bank is an old school pub with an extensive selection of bottled beers. The beertender tried to guide us in choosing the right local beers. We ended up with a raspberry sour from the Turku based Kakola Brewing Company and a dark lager from the small Finnish brewery Takatalo & Tompuri. None of the two beers were impressive, but that could either be because of us choosing badly or simply mediocre beers. I can’t tell… If forced to choose I would go for the raspberry sour.

The Turku beer scene may very well be bigger than this, but this was what we managed to try before we had to move on and go to Stockholm, Sweden. See you!

If in Tallinn, places to go for beer

From Helsinki it’s only a short boat ride to Tallinn, Estonia. We went there to visit different sights and the midieval city, which is one of the best preserved of its kind in Europe. One place that was on top of our list was the Põhjala Brewery and the Põhjala Taproom. We went there on a hot and sunny summer evening and hoped to find a table outside. Luck was not on our side and we had to sit inside – no problem at all. Põhjala just recently moved into newly renovated buildings in what seems like an old industrial neighbourhood a short busride from the center of Tallinn.

We wanted to try many different beers and went for flights of five beers. This was a great way to try a lot of the tasty Põhjala beers. All in all we ended up trying 11 different beers of all sorts – some of them core range, some collaborations and some from other breweries than Põhjala.

The 11 beers were fruited gose, sour IPA, gose, milkshake IPA, baltic porter, porter, IPA, pastry stout, berliner weisse, imperial stout and session IPA. If you want to know more about the beers you can read it here. Most of the Põhjala beers are great and among the ones we had, were collaborations with AF Brew, Coppertail Brewing, Collective Arts Brewing and Other Half. The best beer we had was the super tasty imperial stout “Hämarik” – a collaboration with Other Half. This imperial stout is super balanced in the adjuncts – rye, vanilla, coffee are great and a boozy note works together in a near perfect combination – If you are anywhere near Põhjala Taproom go get this beer (if it’s still on tap…!).

Before we left Põhjala Taproom we had a super tasty Three Meat Platter from their Texas BBQ kitchen washed down with a session IPA from Estonian brewery Pühaste. A perfect way to end this tasty visit to a very great taproom.

In Tallinn it’s also worth to mention Koht Moonshine Bar – a bar that is only open when it’s open!! A sign on the door says so and we found it to be true. Only the third time we returned to the little side street was the bar open. It turned out to be a very nice place with a great selection of beers. Unfortunately we only had half and hour left when we finally found Koht Moonshine Bar open. We managed to try two beers an English bitter brewed for Koht and a buckwheat amber lager from Pühaste – both nice beers. From Koht we walked on to the restaurent Rataskaevu 16 where we enjoyed tasty Estonia food and beers from a selection way better than the average restaurent. It was also at Rataskaevu 16 that I tried my first ever kvass. Kvass is much like liquid rye bread and non-alcoholic. It was a very nice thirst quencer on a hot Estonia summer day.

To end our visit to Tallinn we found a supermarket and found many great beers – both Estonia and foreign – to bring home to enjoy later.

Tallinn is definitely a place I would like to go back to and Põhjala Taproom alone is worth traveling for if you ask me.

This is all for now… next I will return with beers and places to drink them in Turku, Finland – see you!

Beer and travelling

Is it important to your travel planning that craft beer is availible at your destination? For me it’s not a decisive thing when I choose my destination, but it’s something I always like to look into before I go. I also like to go out and investigate the local supermarkets to find out if their beer selection is better than my local supermarkets at home (who have a very poor selection).

My next blog posts will be about what beer related experiences I have this summer. I’ll start here in Denmark and then move around part of the Baltic Sea – destinations will be in Sweden, Åland, Finland, Russia and Estonia. I’ll take a look at local craft beer bars, brew pubs and craft breweries when I happen to come across them.

Stay tuned for a summer of beer and traveling.