One of the things I miss most about the UK is a good pint of bitter, but recently I’ve been pleasantly surprised to find that Brazilians are also starting to appreciate the acerbic as well. One example is Baden Baden’s 1999, which, as a UK-style bitter produced with UK ingredients, is this week’s Brazilian Beer of the Week.
Baden Baden 1999
Thanks to a brief trip home to the UK and some recent minor political shenanigans here, there hasn’t really been an opportunity to get back on the Brazilian beer trail. However, having read and written about just as much as I can about Brazilian politics over the past week or so here’s my latest beer find – think of it as my gift to you to distract you from current events. To be frank, drink more than few of these bad boys and you won’t give a damn about anything else going on around you. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Brewery: Cervejaria Wäls (Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais)
Type: Belgian Strong Trippel Ale
Alcohol: 9% (Yes, that’s right, 9%) Continue Reading
Whilst the majority of Brazilian Pilseners, which make up 98% of the Brazilian beer market, can be dismissed as bland and watery, there are an increasing number of microbrews offering something a little different. One of them is brewed by Göttlich Divina and it is this week’s Brazilian Beer of the Week.
Göttlich Divina – Pilsener Extra com Guaraná
The Vital Statistics
Brewery: Choperia & Distribuidora Opa Bier (Joinville, Santa Catarina)
Size: 600ml bottle
Where purchased: Pão de Açúcar (also seen in larger supermarkets in São Paulo).
Cost: R$11 ($5.50; £3.60)
Background: Göttlich Divina beers are brewed in Joinville, a city in the state of Santa Catarina that was founded by German, Swiss and Norwegian immigrants.
The beers were developed after the brewery’s founders visited the German monastery of Weihenstephan in 2007 – which dating from the year 768 is the world’s oldest brewery. After the visit they decided to incorporate Old World brewing methods with original ingredients from Brazil and around the world.
One example of this can be found in today’s choice of beer, in which the process of Dry Hopping (adding hops to a beer as it ferments) has been used, although in this instance using Guaraná (a Brazilian fruit) rather than extra hops.
What’s it like?
I was quite excited about this when I bought it and expected it to have a very distinctive Guaraná taste. However, it’s flavour is actually quite subtle with the dry hopping process having the effect of leaving only a hint of fruit and citrus. Refreshing and slightly bitter.
Lively, it pours with a clear, golden body and a nice white head, with a fruity aroma.
the book is on the table’s Rating: It’s towards the higher-end of the Brazilian beer market and this is reflected by its price. However, given the extra attention paid to the ingredients and the brewing process it’s worth it. Importantly, it shows that Brazilian Pilsener doesn’t necessarily have to be bland and as cold as humanely possible in order to be refreshing.
At the weekend I had the pleasure of visiting Campos do Jordão in the interior of São Paulo. It was largely an excuse to visit the Baden Baden microbrewery although this isn’t the city’s only highlight.
It could almost be the Andes.
Known as Suíça Brasileira (Brazilian Switzerland), Campos do Jordão is largely a touristic city since its mountainous landscapes and cool temperatures (relatively) make it a novelty in Brazil. At a height of 1639m it is also the country’s highest city, and the abundance of German / Swiss styled architecture all add up to making the place strangely deceptive of the fact that you’re actually in Brazil at all. Continue Reading
Welcome to the first entry in my Brazilian Good Beer Guide, where you can expect to find reviews of beers, microbreweries and places to drink. Today, I’m gonna be looking at the Eisenbahn microbrewery. Saúde!
Eisenbahn Factory Bar.
Name: Eisenbahn – which in German means railway. The brewery was named after an old railway station that used to be situated nearby the factory.
Location: Blumenau, Santa Catarina.
Tours / Visits: The Eisenbahn factory is located just outside of the town of Blumenau and has a bar (see photo above) where you can try its selection of beers. Also serves food, with the stilton-stuffed croquettes a personal recommendation. For more information see here. Continue Reading