Larsblog - beer

Does bread yeast exist?

The title makes it sound like I've lost my mind, because of course bread yeast exists. You've all seen it sitting on supermarket shelves. But I've started to wonder whether what's sold as bread yeast really is a separate kind of yeast, or whether they're just brewer's yeasts that have changed profession. ...

Read | 2020-05-04 16:15 | 15 comment(s)

Figuring out how to brew keptinis

I visited Vikonys in Lithuania and saw how the Lithuanians there brew keptinis. The basic idea is straightforward enough: do a normal mash, then bake the mash in a huge Lithuanian duonkepis oven to get caramel flavours by toasting the sugars in the mash. This is important idea, because it's a completely "new" type of brewing process that creates flavours you cannot make with normal techniques. ...

Read | 2020-04-12 12:20 | 19 comment(s)

East of the mountains: gong

I got the tip-off from Jørund Geving, a farmhouse brewer in Stjørdal. He'd gotten into a random conversation with a farmer from Ål in Hallingdal, who said there were people there who still brewed. That's in eastern Norway, so that was remarkable news in itself: a new brewing region! But then he dropped the real bombshell: these guys had their own yeast, which they called gong. ...

Read | 2020-04-04 13:11 | 9 comment(s)

When not brewing Christmas beer was illegal

There really was a time when not brewing Christmas beer in Norway was not just illegal, but even punished harshly. I realize this sounds like a tall tale, but it is documented far beyond any reasonable doubt. Which is of course quite confusing. Why was the law like this? That's quite a complicated question, it turns out. ...

Read | 2019-12-07 17:02 | 12 comment(s)

Muri: A Mystery Solved

I wrote about the Muri mystery and how I didn't think we'd ever solve it, but yesterday I got an email out of the blue. Kristoffer Krogerus had noted a new paper on Saccharomyces eubayanus (one of the two parents of lager yeast) where the researchers had sequenced the genomes of a number of commercial brewing strains. He downloaded the data and took a closer look. ...

Read | 2019-09-12 08:51 | 5 comment(s)

My new book, in English

Somehow it seems to have happened for real. I've been slaving away at this farmhouse stuff for almost a decade now, and now a summary of all that labour is going to appear in the form of an English book written by me. Somehow it seems at the same time both inevitable and almost unbelievable. But here we are. ...

Read | 2019-09-04 12:09 | 24 comment(s)

The Muri mystery

Back in 2014, when people first started getting seriously interested in kveik, a homebrewer named Bjarne Muri realized he might be able to contribute something. He came from the farm Muri in Olden in Nordfjord, western Norway, not far from Hornindal. His grandfather was a farmhouse brewer, and the last time they brewed on the farm was in 1991. Two things remained from that final brew: a home-made video, and the yeast, dried and stored in an outhouse on the farm. ...

Read | 2019-08-17 17:30 | 4 comment(s)

North American tour

Ever since I started writing seriously about farmhouse ale I knew that some day I would be going to the US to tell people about these beers and brewers. This farmhouse brewing culture was so exciting that it just had to happen at some point. And now it is happening. ...

Read | 2019-08-07 18:44 | 3 comment(s)

Finding farmhouse ale in Norway

Quite a few people write to me, saying they're planning to visit Norway, and want to know where they can experience Norwegian farmhouse ale culture. Probably there are more people who are interested, but who don't write email, so it seemed like a good idea to just publish everything here. ...

Read | 2019-07-14 10:39 | 11 comment(s)

Farmhouse ale festival, now what?

Four years ago, back in 2015, William Holden told me that I was on the board for a beer festival in Hornindal to be dedicated to farmhouse ale. This was the first I heard about the festival, and the announcement that I was on the board was not preceded by asking "would you like to help arrange a festival?" or anything like that. I was just added to the group "ADMIN Kornølfestival" without further ado, and from then on treated as a member of the board. ...

Read | 2019-06-14 16:43 | 3 comment(s)

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Historical Brewing Techniques - The Forgotten Art of Farmhouse Brewing

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