Krakow BeerWeek 03
Ambiente and first beers
I probably should start with the name, since this was the first question I got on Facebook.
"Whole week there?"
Nope just 3 days. Based on a suggestion of my brother 4 days for a hangover and let’s call it a week.
Krakow BeerWeek (KBW) takes place in Krakow. One of the most beautiful cities in Poland and an aim for tourists from the whole world. This year’s edition was a third one and was held after a break. BeerWeek 03 is the first festival I have seen to take place at football stadium.
Yes, football stadium.
Shortly after opening. It is almost empty and some food tracks are still closed.
First day of the festival was definitely the best time to do the photos. Later on the crowd was overwhelming.
Worth noticing is the fact that the organizers have allowed an entry to the part of the stadium tribunes. Very interesting experience.
Siting in the sun, having a beer with my bro and NOT watching football. Priceless.
What I appreciated is that the whole area of the festival was closed. Security at the gate checking your backpacks and bigger handbags. This is something that I liked. Call me paranoid, but nowadays you cannot be careful too much.
What I also liked was the access to the food. Here KBW have beaten everything I have seen before. Probably a dozen of the food trucks that would serve everything from pizza, burgers, fries, tacos to more crazy things including bull’s cojones (yes, no type-o here). There will be separate photos story about the food.
Enough talking, let’s start drinking. Here one note – I have decided to concentrate on the breweries that I don’t know myself. Second priority were the beers that have been brewed extra for the festival.
Other comment is that I am giving the names of the breweries and beers as they are. No jokes, this really is Polish language. Still if you visit Poland you will have no problem with finding somebody who speaks English, German or French.
To be proper I must start with the official beer of the festival. Brewed by the organizers in a collaboration with a multi-tap bar.
Brokreacja Weźże Piwo
American Fruit Wheat with pineapple
Now this beer must be a reason why nobody was selling water here. Even if it has all the basic characteristics of its style including a mix of sour-sweet-hops and a pineapple aroma and taste it is clearly too diluted. Wonderful replacement for the missing water (and clearly great thirst quencher).Not the best beer I have ever tried but OK.
Szczyrzycki Browar Cystersów Gryf – Klasztorna IPA
Yes, in Poland we may not have the Trappist monks but we have enough monasteries and they have their own breweries. This one belongs to Cistercian Order and its history started in 1628. After renovation, Gryf has concentrated mostly on the classic beer styles based on traditional recipes, but nowadays they have dared to try a modern craft beer styles as well.
Klasztorna IPA (Monastery IPA) is such an example and a good one. Seriously, there is nothing to complain.
Klasztorna - IPA is aromatic, slightly bitter and nice carbonated. An excellent starter and a great case of new wave beer directed to a broader publicity. Very nice.
Brokreacja The Cop
Shown for the first time at the KBW. Perfectly fit in the style. Golden with large head. Long lasting aroma of grass and tropical fruits. Grainy and citrusy in taste, finished with hoppy bitterens. Light body, medium carbonation. Drinkable and refreshing. Well done.
Browar Twigg – Life On Mars
New England IPA
Did I ever mention that I am not a big fan of the New England IPAs? No? Well, OK. I am not a big fan of New England IPAs. The life on Mars is not going to change that. Something is wrong here. Not enough aromatic to be nice, not enough hops to be bitter. On the other hand, I cannot say that it is watery. Maybe it is the problem with the style but I simply don’t like it.
Browar Twigg – Apollo 11
Pear Sour Ale
And ready to take off. The only one problem I had with this sour ale was the fact that the pear was a bit artificial. Maybe it’s the combo of sourness and not very sour fruit like pear. Don’t know but I didn’t enjoy it as much as I thought I would.
Browar Widawa – X-Brett IPA BA
First beer with a potential for greatness. Brett IPAs are rather rare case – here normally brewers decide on Bretanomyces yeast instead Saccharomyces. Being wild yeast they will produce ester aromas that often go in the tropical fruits aroma. Therefore, adding them to American hops is brilliant. On top this beer was barrel aged for 6 months. And the effect kicks ass. Aroma is sweet to sour, light hoppy. First sip is light sour going into sweet and hoppy. It is not a geek-crazy-IBU full, but it clearly is something above the regular level. On top, barrel aging has provided a thick texture to the beer. I have spent 5 minutes enjoying the view of the CO2 bubbles appearing in the thick body of the beer after every move I have made with the glass. Really something great.
To be continued in Part 03...