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2017 is over. Long live 2018!

Like every year we asked our friends about their last year and prodded them for some foresight into the next year. Considering how varied this “beer thing” is, it’s no surprise the answers were equally varied. However, looking through the answers, it becomes crystal clear that one topic moved our friends, it itself being rather murky though. So, before we head any deeper into 2018, let’s quickly have a look back.

Leatherpants at the Great Canadian Beer Festival

With the last remnants of a jetlag hanging in our skull like evaporating water droplets from a harbor fog, our brain was filled to capacity with impressions: We just came back from seeing orcas in the wild, more bald eagles than pigeons and rough-edged coasts and soft moss on millions of trees. In such a state, seeing a person dressed like a unicorn, on a field full of seagull shit, on an island – may it be as big as Belgium, the whole experience could have felt like a motorcycle race during a sandstorm outside of Las Vegas. In the end, attending the Great Canadian Beer Fest(ival) was very little gonzo, but very much fun.

Interview with Jeff Bagby of Bagby Beer Company

Before the hype, before the trend, before all of that, there was craft beer. In this interview Jeff Bagby, owner and brewer at Bagby Beer Co., pulls you away from all that hype and reminds you that craft beer is a craft with dedicated people who have a passion forged in history. In this wide ranging interview, you’ll get to read about small beers, a westcoast point of view on eastcoast IPAs and running a company.

Interview with Fredrik Ek of Brekeriet

Brekeriet is everywhere. Literally. They must be among the most busy when it comes to participating at festivals and other events. Ironically this interview was done via Skype, but it included a tour through the new brewery location, which includes a designated sour room and a lot of space for more barrels, fermenters, and a foosball table. Read what the three brothers have been up to and how an infection got them here.

Looking for craft beer in Greece

The sun hit us hard. We had arrived in the South, in the Sun, in Greece. It was a thirsty weather and we knew little to nothing about Greek craft beer. But we knew of one place, pointed out to us by Konstantinos Avramidis of Elixi – who we found via Untappd and contacted via Facebook. With an unsure future for Ratebeer, such might be something we need to get used to.

Drinking beers from Flanders and learning things

Beer is to Belgium as Cheese is to Switzerland as is Guns to the US as is ceviche to Peru: you can’t separate the two. At home we have a book called “1000 Belgian Beers” and browsing through it you’ll notice that there’s a plethora of breweries you’ve never even heard of. Thus when we got an invitation from Flanders Investment & Trade to drink… uhm, I mean discover, beers from the area, we obviously had to go. The event catered to people in the gastronomical and retail industry, and we were there as a multiplier, apparently, to spread the good word about Belgian beers. All with the intention of these beers hopefully being available in Switzerland soon.

Amsterdam, one day in April

Besides (or maybe for some: on top of) plenty of Sodom and Gomorrah, Amsterdam has a lively beer scene. Moreover, many have a tap-room for you to hang out, drink fresh beer and eat something to keep you going. There are actually so many breweries and bars that it is impossible to do them all in a day – for a good list, check out the map our fellow traveler and guide has put together. Therefore, this is not a complete guide, but a report on how we spent one Saturday in April.