Translation: Not applicable
Regional Locale: Central Eastern Denmark
Official Language: Danish
How To Say Beer There: Øl (pronounced: oouhl)
The Scandinavian beer scene is exploding. There's been a surge over the past many years in the number of microbreweries, many trying to emulate the big, bold beers of the US microbrew revolution. Despite beer's high cost (expect to pay about $9 for a pint in Denmark, and as much as $15 in Norway), the scene is booming. One of the breweries that has led the charge is Mikkeller, founded in the kingdom of Denmark by Mikkel Borg BjergsØ and Kristian Klarup Keller (the name Mikkeller is a combination of their first and last names.) Not quite three years old, their rise to beer geek prominence has been meteoric. In 2006, their first year in business, Mikkeller was named Danish brewery of the year, and the fifth best brewery in the world. The secret to their success? As BjergsØ, now in the business by himself (Keller left to take a job in another field) says, "We brew the beer we like, and we don't think too much what the customer wants." Not pulling any punches there... Turns out, customers like what he's doing. Mikkeller beers are highly coveted across numerous continents, which is why we're totally psyched to be bringing you one of their newest creations this month.
While it's a bummer that the founding duo have split, BjergsØ has not quite gone it alone. He's worked with some heavy hitters, partnering up with brewing illuminati like AleSmith, Stone, De Struise, and Three Floyds, among others. Part of what's got them noticed, besides their boundary-pushing beers, is their attitude. BjergsØ prides himself on pushing the envelope, while not taking himself too seriously. With amusing names like "Gone Cold Turkey?" "It's Alive!" "All Others Pale," "Santa's Little Helper," and "Beer Geek Breakfast," they've fully, completely and totally embraced their beer geekdom. This Danish brewer is steeped with the youthful, hip elements that have also helped make bands from Denmark some of the best break-out music-makers of the past 5 years. There's a blatant intelligence, but not pompousness, and levity blended with high gravity. The fact is, Mikkeller may just about be the coolest brewery out there. There, we said it… They recently brewed "Black," which they describe as "Denmark's strongest beer and Mikkeller's 'most violent' beer to date." Hell yes!
Here are a couple examples of their "style"… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fqrtcQk3Ziw
OK, OK, we know, it's a pain to try and copy URLs like these by hand, from this newsletter, into your browser. But here's an easier way: punch this one up— www.beermonthclub.com/pastbeernews and dig up this month's newsletter (it's easy, you'll find it)—where you'll be able to just click the links above, or, copy and paste them into your browser.
Mikkeller started brewing beer in their kitchen, and set out to challenge the Danes' taste buds with intense taste adventures, seeking to provoke some inventiveness in Danish beer brewing. As they put it "why not show the way?" Mission accomplished Mikkeller.
For more information about the brewery, check out their website at www.mikkeller.dk