Time to explore Europes Beer

Reads 1336 • Replies 24 • Started Tuesday, June 11, 2013 10:38:10 AM CT

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AlexMenary
12:56 Tue 6/11/2013

Originally posted by chriso
Originally posted by AlexMenary
I am going to Brewlab in Sunderland England in March for the 9 week brewing program. In the middle of the 9 weeks, there are two weeks off and I plan to spend at least some of the time traveling around and checking out new local beers.

I presume the course isn’t 7 days a week? If so, you’ll have weekends to look at some places in the UK. Most major cities are within easy reach by train for a weekend. Many for a day trip. Be warned though, train tickets can be very cheap if you are prepared to tie yourself to specific train departures AND book well in advance, but very expensive if you pay on the day. Not so bad if it’s a day trip as you can buy a cheap day return, often for not much more than an advance ticket. But, if you are leaving on one day and coming back on another you’re going to get stung if you don’t book in advance.


That is some good info to know about the trains, I will keep that in mind.

 
beastiefan2k
beers 4112 º places 259 º 13:08 Tue 6/11/2013

Beer and people from Belgium are Belgians. Similar to how beer and people from Canada are Canadian.

 
humlelala
beers 1375 º places 89 º 13:08 Tue 6/11/2013

Ferries from Newcastle are certainly a viable option of reaching the continent but it might be worth keeping in mind also that there is a small airport in Newcastle served by EasyJet. Looking at their fares right now it seems to be possible to get a return ticket from Newcastle <> Amsterdam for 95 USD departing on Thursday March 13th and going back on Sunday March 16th.

Of course these are early bird prices and likely won’t last all the way through to next year.

 
Beermack
beers 725 º places 36 º 13:12 Tue 6/11/2013

I'm a Sunderland lad, so if I'm back in the north east visiting my folks at the time then I'll certainly help show you around. Not much of a Sunderland beer scene, but Newcastle has plenty of really great beer bars. You've also got to go to the Stadium of Light to watch SAFC play - that's about the only good thing to do at the weekends (and even that's painful sometimes!). My old man is pals with the head of brew lab & always says how impressed he is with the whole set up - you'll have a great time

 
konstifik
beers 573 º places 37 º 13:51 Tue 6/11/2013

Originally posted by AlexMenary
Originally posted by konstifik
So "Time to epxlore Europes beer" really means "Time to explore beers in the UK and Belgium"? ;)

In Belgium you can easily visit places like the Kulminator, DHVL, Cantillon, Drie Fonteinen, Delirium Café, Moeder Lambic etc with public transport. No need for a car unless you want to go to places like the trappist breweries.


Haha ya to some extent that is what I mean. I don’t want to spend a ton of cash getting around Europe, so really I will likely stick to the UK and Belgium.


You could easily make it to the Netherlands cheaply as well. From Antwerpen (where you’ll want to go to visit Kulminator and more) it’s just over an hour by train to Amsterdam. Some very good beer bars there and you could make it to Bodegraven to visit De Molen as well.

 
TAR
beers 2787 º places 34 º 13:59 Tue 6/11/2013

Originally posted by Gazza
Originally posted by TAR
Skip England and explore Franconia and fall in love with kellerbier, instead.

Or you could stay in England and have beer that’s not full of diacetyl and/or overattenuated.... (usually)

Heh. My suggestion was more about the overall experience, as drinking and cycling in the idyllic Franconian countryside is up there with the best of experiences life has to offer, beerwise. I didn’t mean to imply England would be a valueless place to explore. Each year I contemplate a trip to England, as I absolutely adore cask ale (and I would love to drink with you, someday!), but I am trying to better understand lager, so I always end up in Franconia instead. :-)

The USA has its duds, Belgium has its duds, as well as England and any other beery country. As a huge fan of Franconian beer, I will be the first among us to say there are more beers tainted with DMS, diacetyl, raw grain husks, medicinal sweetness, fusel alcohol, etc., in Franconia than there are clean, well-crafted examples. But discovering new gems and revisiting old ones more than makes Franconian a worthwhile destination for me; twice a year isn’t enough for this lager geek! It simply is something all beer geeks must experience for themselves, at least once.

I have a feeling when I see the British countryside, I won’t ever want to leave the place. Maybe THAT’S why I haven’t yet visited, come to think of it.

 
AlexMenary
17:26 Tue 6/11/2013

Originally posted by ACD
I’m a Sunderland lad, so if I’m back in the north east visiting my folks at the time then I’ll certainly help show you around. Not much of a Sunderland beer scene, but Newcastle has plenty of really great beer bars. You’ve also got to go to the Stadium of Light to watch SAFC play - that’s about the only good thing to do at the weekends (and even that’s painful sometimes!). My old man is pals with the head of brew lab & always says how impressed he is with the whole set up - you’ll have a great time




That would be awesome if you are around while I’m there. It would be great to be out with a local instead of trying to navigate the beer scene without anyone who knows it.

 
Erlangernick
beers 6 º places 2 º 23:38 Tue 6/11/2013

Originally posted by TAR
Originally posted by Gazza
Originally posted by TAR
Skip England and explore Franconia and fall in love with kellerbier, instead.

Or you could stay in England and have beer that’s not full of diacetyl and/or overattenuated.... (usually)

Heh. My suggestion was more about the overall experience, as drinking and cycling in the idyllic Franconian countryside is up there with the best of experiences life has to offer, beerwise. I didn’t mean to imply England would be a valueless place to explore. Each year I contemplate a trip to England, as I absolutely adore cask ale (and I would love to drink with you, someday!), but I am trying to better understand lager, so I always end up in Franconia instead. :-)

The USA has its duds, Belgium has its duds, as well as England and any other beery country. As a huge fan of Franconian beer, I will be the first among us to say there are more beers tainted with DMS, diacetyl, raw grain husks, medicinal sweetness, fusel alcohol, etc., in Franconia than there are clean, well-crafted examples. But discovering new gems and revisiting old ones more than makes Franconian a worthwhile destination for me; twice a year isn’t enough for this lager geek! It simply is something all beer geeks must experience for themselves, at least once.

I have a feeling when I see the British countryside, I won’t ever want to leave the place. Maybe THAT’S why I haven’t yet visited, come to think of it.



Interesting sentiment, quite close to home für mich, actually. I used to think I had no interest in the UK, beer-wise, pub-wise, culturally (heh), or landscape-wise. Then we started visiting while on holiday from here. It’s hard for me to say I’d rather *live* there now, because there are so many non-beer things we love about living in Franconia, but if I could swap my life for one in Sheffield, it would be a hard decision to make.

I’d cheerfully swap all 280(?) Franconian breweries for a handful of northern UK ones though, that’s an easy decision. It would be hard to see Roppelt, Griess (have you been yet?), and Witzgall go, but that’s the price to pay.

You can’t say you like/love cask ale until you’ve had it properly in situ, IMO.

 
Erlangernick
beers 6 º places 2 º 23:40 Tue 6/11/2013

No reason for the OP to even THINK about getting a car. Finding your way to remote country pubs by train, bus, and foot is a big part of the appeal!

 
imdownthepub
beers 15333 º places 1156 º 00:46 Wed 6/12/2013

There is a ferry from Newcastle to The Netherlands and hence Belgium, book though as it is very popular. From Sunderland the best days out would be Newcastle (avoid local football derby’s though as Newcastle vs Sunderland is a bit feisty), Edinburgh and York all can be done on the train. Sunderland itself is somewhat devoid of good beer places.
The Northumberland coast north of Newcastle is spectacular and does have a few Brewpubs. I’m sure there will be others on your course with the same interests if its about Brewing.