Larsblog - beer

Brewing koduõlu on Hiiumaa

On Hiiumaa we drove off the ferry, then a couple hundred meters up the main road, turned off, and within a few minutes we were outside the house. We were there to brew a koduõlu, an Estonian farmhouse ale, with Paavo Pruul, who runs a small bed & breakfast. We parked outside the guest house, where the wooden brewing vessels were standing right outside the door. It turns out Paavo's brewery is actually in the guest house. ...

Read | 2018-03-11 15:06 | 8 comment(s)

Aarne Trei, a koduõlu veteran

From the previous stop we drove just a few kilometers, to meet brewmaster Aarne Trei. I'd really been looking forward to meeting Aarne, because for a couple of years I'd been reading and re-reading the only piece of documentation I could find on koduõlu, a report from a Finnish home-brewer who visited Saaremaa in Estonia in 1995. One of the brewmasters he met and interviewed was Aarne Trei. ...

Read | 2018-02-18 11:45 | 3 comment(s)

Pihtla, a farmhouse brewery on Saaremaa

Koduõlu is one of the few farmhouse styles that you can actually buy right now, thanks to the commercial brewery Pihtla Õlleköök, in the village of Pihtla on Saaremaa island in Estonia. They make a number of beers, but the star is undoubtedly their koduõlu, called Pihtla Õlu. As far as I know, that's the only koduõlu that's easily available at the moment. It's even served in Tallinn, at Põrgu, and maybe other places, too. ...

Read | 2018-02-13 16:02 | 1 comment(s)

Meelis Sepp, maltster and brewer

From Setomaa we drove right across all of Estonia to the west coast, then took the ferry over to the island of Muhu. From there we took the bridge over to the island of Saaremaa, the second biggest island in the Baltic, after Gotland. Saaremaa is famous for its farmhouse brewing, in a style known as "koduõlu", meaning "home beer." We have an appointment with Meelis Sepp, a farmer and brewer in Kõrkkula, in the south-western part of the island. ...

Read | 2018-01-28 13:57 | 4 comment(s)

Taarka Tarõ: A Seto restaurant

From the festival in Värska we drove on lonely forest roads to Obinitsa. The landscape here is mostly thick forest, with the occasional field here and there. At Obinitsa is a museum of Seto culture, and our main destination for the day, the Seto restaurant Taarka Tarõ, which is named after famous Seto singer Hilana Taarka. ...

Read | 2017-11-12 11:32 | 2 comment(s)

Seto kingdom day

In south-eastern Estonia, and across the border in Russia, lives the Seto people. They have kept many of their ancient traditions, and one of them is the traditional farmhouse brewing. Every summer they arrange Seto Kingdom Day, a kind of fair celebrating their traditions, and of course they serve traditional Seto koduõlu as part of it. So in the summer of 2016 we attended the festival to see what their beer was like. ...

Read | 2017-11-05 10:36 | 2 comment(s)

"Kveik" - what does it mean?

I've been writing about kveik for about four years now, and that word, which seemed so crystal clear to begin with, is now beginning to confuse people. So, let's see if we can set things straight. That's not easy with a word that's already in active use around the globe, but let's at least try. ...

Read | 2017-10-29 11:26 | 13 comment(s)

A family tree for kveik

In 2016 I was contacted by Canadian researcher Richard Preiss. He wanted to do research on the kveik cultures I had collected, and after a while we agreed to set up a collaboration. Since then I've been sending a part of every farmhouse yeast I collect to Richard, and he has been keeping me up to date on his findings. Since this was ongoing research I haven't revealed his findings, but now a paper by Preiss, Tyrawa, and van der Merwe has been submitted to a journal, and everything is out in the open. ...

Read | 2017-10-06 10:02 | 8 comment(s)

Emil Chr. Hansen and the yeast revolution

In the late summer of 1883, disaster struck at the Carlsberg brewery in Copenhagen. The beer started smelling off, and had an unpleasant bitter taste. The dreaded "yeast sickness" had hit Carlsberg, a heavy blow to brewery owner Jacobsen, who used to boast that Carlsberg had never had this problem and were still using the original yeast Jacobsen brought from southern Germany four decades before. ...

Read | 2017-09-10 14:05 | 3 comment(s)

Pasteur and the beer of national revenge

Pasteur was already a scientific icon when he decided to work on brewer's yeast. He had done revolutionary work on wine-making, dairy production, silk worms, and important theoretical work in chemistry and biology. His reason for taking up work on beer was rather surprising: he wanted national revenge over Germany. Germany attacked France in July 1870, causing his only son to enlist and interrupting construction of Pasteur's laboratory. ...

Read | 2017-09-03 13:40 | 5 comment(s)

<< Previous

> Home
> Technology
> Beer
> Personal

> The author
> On Twitter


follow us in feedly

Subscribe by email:

My new book

det norske ølet

My other book

Guidebook to Lithuanian beer
Rough guide to
Lithuanian beer


2017-08 - 2017-01
2017-01 - 2016-08
2016-07 - 2015-11
2015-10 - 2015-05
2015-04 - 2015-02
2015-01 - 2014-10
2014-10 - 2014-08
2014-07 - 2014-06
2014-06 - 2013-12
2013-11 - 2013-08
2013-08 - 2012-02
2012-01 - 2009-12
2009-10 - 2008-11
2008-11 - 2008-05
2008-05 - 2007-09
2007-09 - 2006-12
2006-11 - 2006-07
2006-06 - 2005-09
2005-09 - 2005-09

Beer blogs

Knut Albert
Shut up about Barclay Perkins
Det står en-og-førti øl...
The Beer Trotter
Pete Brown
The Beer Nut
Boak and Bailey
Beers I've known
Daft Eejit Brewing
Ancient Malt and Ale
Brewing Nordic
Timely Tipple

Last comments

Rob Sullivan on "Kveik" - what does ...

Lars Marius Garshol on Brewing koduõlu...

Alec on Brewing koduõlu...

Lars Marius Garshol on Brewing koduõlu...

Trevor G Fisher on Brewing koduõlu...

Lars Marius Garshol on Brewing koduõlu...

Trevor on Brewing koduõlu...

Lars Marius Garshol on Brewing koduõlu...

Dave on Brewing koduõlu...

Jeff Scanlan on Brewing with kveik