Not so long ago Sweden held an unfortunate reputation as the producers of lack lustre, bland lagers. Thankfully the emergence of numerous small breweries across the country has ultimately redefined the meaning of the word ‘innovative’ in the world of Swedish beers. Today Sweden is regarded as one of the most influential players in the world of hops and for true followers of the ‘new brew world order’, a tour of tastings is a must while visiting.
Stigbergets is a marvel of modern micro brewing. So many words can be used to describe this hazy, dense, foggy, hoppy delight and not one does it justice. Stigbergets brewery is found in Gothenburg and came into the spotlight in 2012. After the brewery released its Stigbergets GBG Beer Week IPA for the Gothenburg Beer Festival in 2016 the brand rightly took its place at the top of every beer nerd’s wish-list. With descriptive references such as a “riotous hoppy celebration, with notes of papaya, passionfruit, tangerine, and pineapple”, a Stigbergets cannot be missed while in Sweden.
Omnipollo is another award-winning brand founded in 2011 by Henok Fentie and Karl Grandin who have perfected art of ‘gypsy brewing’. As is typical with many Swedish beers, Omnipollo is not simply ‘made’: it is crafted in small batches with any and all range of flavours considered fair game. If you’re feeling adventurous reach for their Original Ice Cream Pale Ale or the Bianca Raspberry Wild Wild Brett. The names alone are entertainment for an entire evening!
3. Swedish Ciders
Unlike the British or French versions, the Swedes create a refreshingly drinkable cider that is sweeter and has, by law, a minimum of 15% juice content.
Kopparberg Cider, one of Sweden’s oldest brewing names, is prized for its fresh blends of pears and apples made with the soft water locally found in the town of Kopparberg. The brewery also creates delightful variations with elderflower, lime and mixed fruits.
Rekorderlig is another high quality cider that is well worth a try. Rekorderlig uses fresh spring water from Vimmerby during its brewing to create uniquely smooth ciders from apples, pears, mangoes, passionfruit, strawberries and raspberries.
Sweden’s beer scene has become as diverse as the country itself. In true Scandinavian style their approach to craft beers is both scientifically precise and wildly creative all at the same time. For any visitor hoping to capture the authentic essence of Sweden a visit a local bar is a good place to start. Watching the sun set over the Göta älv river in Gothenburg while sipping on ‘an adventure in a glass’ will have you happily planning your next visit to Sweden even before you leave.