Very big place and there are a lot of tourists. Looks like a Egyptian ot Turkish hotel, seriously. So staff is not so quick to run back and forth and it’s not really comfortable here. But beer is fresh, there are some food anyway, so you have to go here if you are interested in plzensky prazdroj. But it’s ok if you are not going to come back.
Well worth a visit. We had a tour with Vaclav Berka who showed us around the place where they still craft the wooden barrels they use. Then we went straight to the cellars that boast a huge amount of open, wooden fermenting vats and oak lagering barrels. Well, we spent some too much time sampling the unfiltered Urquell from one of those barrels and didn’t have the time to see the brewing process. Instead, we got the chance to see the malting process, which was a rare experience. Very recommended, not the least because of the cellars.
Capa (421) Kitsap, Washington | September 29, 2013
Yes, it is a bit touristy, but it is also one of the more thorough brewery tours I’ve ever been on. I don’t think the SABMiller bit was too hyped, though they did make sure you knew it was owned by them. You get to see the bottling line, the old and new brewhouse, and the highlight of the tour, the cellars, where you drink unfiltered Urquell straight from the barrel. Our tour guide was very informative and friendly. While the group we ended up with on our tour was fairly large, it didn’t seem cramped nor were we rushed thru things and I feel we really got the whole experience of the tour. The unfilled Urquell obviously being the highlight. You can ask for a small glass or a large one- go with the large one...duh. Regardless of your stance on pilsners or SABMiller, it really is a must see for beer geeks. But, it is also done in a way that my non-beer geek wife had a blast and repeatedly told me how much fun it was. She also loved the unfiltered. Excellent side trip if you’re visiting Prague. (Selection gets a bump because it is one of two places you can get the unfiltered)
Huge old-style brewery. Usually full of turists, but the tour is still worth to visit. You will see the awesome cellars and learn about history. And off course taste the unfiltered urquell from the barrel which is pretty good.
One of the must visit places for every single beer lover, at least once in a lifetime. The tour of the brewery is not so interesting, but you can see historical sites, as the main gate, the railroad station where they got the barley, the historic brewing facilities and, of course, the beer cellars, where the most interesting part takes place: there you can taste the amazing unfiltered and unpasteurised Pilsner Urquell. It is worthy only because of this. If you are in Prague for some days this is a visit you must consider.
I was there in February 2012. A friend and me were driving to Slovakia and we stopped in Plzen unexpectedly. After finding the brewery we were told the tour already left but thanks to the kind girls behind the desk we could catch up with the group. The tour guide is a Czech but he lived in the States for a while. His English was excellent and he had a lot of knowledge about beer. He’d gladly answer any questions asked, even annoying questions about the SAB Miller thingie. Very impressive tour, especially the cellar part I won’t forget. Got to drink the real Plzensky Prazdroj from the barrel in the cellars, it’s as good as a pilsner style could get.
After the tour we were hanging around a bit in the main building as we were freezing our asses off in the cellar and outside (-17 celsuis on that day). We noticed an event going on and upon asking it was told it’s only for the families who were originally involved in the brewery. Like an annual reunion. We didn’t have an invitation. We wanted to join the party.
After having a few Westvleteren and a nice Struise Double Black we brought from our own cellar, we had the guts to return to the car, suit up and head back to the main building. After about 15 minutes we managed to sneak in to the party area. The thing is that Czech people are genuinly nice and as long as you move to another table every 15 minutes, nobody seemed to mind we were obviously uninvited. We had some great food there, met some funny people, enjoyed a few gigs, practised Czech like never before, and most of all drank free Plzensky until our liver shrunk to nearly nothing. We’re even on the ’family’ picture which was taken in the end. Czech people, Plzensky Prazdroj, I love you!
The tour is pretty commercial and slightly over egging the SAB Miller element of this historic brewery. The reason everyone comes here is to sample the traditionally brewed Plzensky Prazdroj which has been fermented in open oak vats and matured in massive oak barrels. It is the only place in the world you can get it and it is sensational. Nothing like even the excellent Kvasnicove or the solid unpasteurised version served in tankovna pubs. A wonderful fresh hop aroma, soft carbonation and malt heart it makes a mockery of progress - why is all pilsner beer brewed like this. Or why can they not sell it at the brewery?
If you are feeling cheeky, sneak away from your tour group as you are leaving the cellars and another group is coming in to get seconds.
We went on a Czech language tour of the brewery and despite not understanding a single word, this was amazing. The Pilsner Urquell Kvasnicový straight from the wooden barrel was worth the price of admission. Would I do this again? Absolutely.
My third visit here, and the tours are getting more and more boring, but you get the reward at the end. Souvenir shop and restaurant as well a small outdoor beer garden well worth a visit in summer time.
This place is all about the beer in the cellar. A must visit in Pilsen.