Winter, as they say, is coming. Well, we’ve autumn to get through first, but you get what I mean.
As the end of September draws near, so too does our annual ‘Eurotoberfest’. It is, as the name suggests, a celebration of all that is tasty and exciting in the world of brewing across our fine and varied continent of Europe.
We’ll be launching it on September 30th, with one of the most exciting Meet the Brewer events we’ve had (especially for those of us with a love for Belgian beer!). Yvan De Baets, from Brussels’s self-styled ‘boutique’ brewery Brasserie De La Senne will be joining us to introduce some of their beautiful modern Belgian beers including Taras Boulba and Zinnebir. A handful of tickets are still available for this event, priced at £14.
Staying in Belgium, we’ll also be getting, for the first time, some rather splendid Viven beers. Viven, set up originally in 1999 by Willy de Lobel, and brewed just two beers, Chapel of Viven, a blonde, and Monastery of Viven a brune, both brewed at De Proefbrouwerij, a well-known brewer of beers for third parties in Lochristi in the East Flanders region of Belgium. In 2003, Willy decided to hand over the Viven reins to Tony Traen, the son of a local liquor dealer. Both Chapel and Monastery of Viven were quickly rechristened Viven Blonde and Viven Brune respectively. Six years later, Tony felt the desire to expand the range with Flemish takes on non-Flemish beers. Out of this desire were born Viven Ale, hopped with English Goldings hops, the delightfully smoky Viven Porter, and the incredible Viven Imperial IPA, heavily hopped with Tomahawk and Simcoe. Of the range, we’ll be stocking the Blonde, Porter and Imperial IPA, which really has to be tasted to be believed! Look out for the bottles in the Belgian fridge.
Finally for this little preview – we’ll be profiling other breweries nearer the time – those of you who attended the Toccalmatto Meet the Brewer back on June 10th will be pleased to know that we’ll be having plenty more beers from them during Eurotoberfest and beyond. Bruno Carilli and his team make some of the most exquisite beers ever to come out of Italy, and are spearheading the ‘craft’ beer revolution currently taking place in this famously wine-loving country. Few who have tasted their remarkable ‘Zona Cesarini’, showcasing the peculiar but amazing Sorachi Ace hop, developed by Sapporo brewery in Japan, will ever forget its citrusy delights.
And there you have it. There is too much going on to mention everything, but suffice as to say, we’ll be stocking special beers from Belgium, Italy, Germany, Denmark, Sweden and beyond. We’re working on some last-minute additions, too, so watch this space!
*Delete as appropriate.
Words by Jamie Hancock / Artwork by Steve Hockett