View Full Version : European Breweries
No relevance to bourbon, but I found this statistic interesting:
"There are roughly 1,660 breweries in the European Union. Nearly 1,300 of them are in Germany, and more than half of that 1,300 have an annual production capacity of only 5,000 hectolitres."
Since I am an ignorant American and not used to the metric system, just how much beer is 5,000 hectoliters. I know that it is a great deal less than what MGD would put out, but would like to have an idea none the less.
5,000 hectolitres comes out to 132,086 gallons... about 1.4 million 12oz bottles. 1 hectolitre is about 26.5 gallons, or about 280 12oz bottles. As a basis for comparison, Anheuser-Busch reported worldwide beer volume of 128.8 million hectoliters in 2002. Thats almost 3.5 billion gallons of beer.
1 hl = 22imp gal = 26.5 us gal.
5000 hl = roughly 132,500 us gal
German is one of the founders of the microbrewery concept (i.e. the microbrewery is not a new concept).
And of the German breweries, most are within the precincts of Bavaria.
The number of German breweries sounds high, and still is in relative terms, but a generation ago, there were twice as many breweries in Germany. Consumption has dropped regularly there as well as in other European countries, but since the Germans started from a high benchmark there are still many good ones around. Of the newly established ones, they tend to focus on older, more eccentric styles of beer, e.g. unfiltered beers, top-fermented beers, flavoured beers, etc.
There's nothing quite like having a wonderful, small, local brewery/distillery producing your favorite beverage! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif We don't have as many here in the US as we did before Prohibition, but at least we have gotten more local breweries over the past 20 years or so. Hopefully, that trend will continue! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/drink.gif
When I was a young man, low those many years ago, my friends would talk about going on a "Wisconsin Beer Tour." Even in those days, within the memory of men still living, it was possible to drive across Wisconsin sampling the product of a different local brewery in each town. Of course, DWI laws weren't what they are now either in that simpler time.
I love the micros as much as anyone, but it seems lately that they are preoccupied with making a beer that is different. I just want one that is good. I don't need a Pale/Raspberry/Dry/Chocolate/Oatmeal pilsner.
I agree 100%.
I know that there are some micro-breweries out there that are making some odd "strange brews", however I think that I saw more of that about 10 years ago. These days, I primarily see that there are lots of micros and sticking with the basic styles, which I'm always interested in checking out. I especially like the ones that are very local, thereby giving me a chance to get something flavorful and fresh. For example, here on LI there are 2 small micros that sell to local distributors. Also, Brooklyn brewery makes some wonderful, basic styles of beer that are always tasty. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/drink.gif
Bob, I'm not saying they don't have a couple of tasty ones, but usually it's three or four off the wall types and one really decent brew.
And speaking of European Breweries, has anyone else out there seen AB's new World Select beer advertised anywhere? I have only seen the stuff in my neighborhood liquor store and just shelled out the 7.50 (yes, that's right) for a six pack to give it a try. Tastes like they are going up against Heineken with this one, but even Heinies don't cost 7.50 a six pack here. What's them wacky Busch boys thinking of now?
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