Arctic Circle, the Purest Water in the World and Lava Fields
When the Arctic circle and Iceland are mentioned in a conversation about beer, you would never assume that somewhere that cold would be where something so cool and refreshing is made but for those who love beer and craft ales there is a place that is producing interesting and exciting flavours of craft beer that will entice you to get your snow boots and warm coats out in search of the Nordic brew.
In the fishing port of Akureyri Iceland, 60 miles south of the Arctic Circle is an Icelandic Craft brewery called Einstök Ölgerd that began its journey in a quest to search for the best water in the world.
It was founded by Bernard La Borie, David Altshuler and Jack Sichterman who stumbled across the purest water that begins as rain or glaciers from the Hlioarfjall Mountain naturally purified by ancient lava fields.
The three men formed a partnership with the Viking brewery that had an interested in producing craft beer and is rapidly becoming an established international brand.
Prohibition laws existed on beer until 1989 and there was no professional brewing before then except for maintaining yeast in bread which led to the brewing of beer but only 6 types existed in Iceland.
How the Vikings Make their Beer
At a control deck on the second floor are deep tanks that radiate heat and this is where the ingredients are blended; barley, malt oats or whatever else is added in and an extract is gained from this process which then leads to a production of sweet, dark liquor called wort.
The husk is separated from the barley and the wort is boiled with hops added into it before the fermentation process begins.
Fermentation is done in the basement in fermentation tanks which can hold up to 48000 litres with the beer being fermented at different temperatures with three to four different types of yeast.
Once the beer has been fermented it goes into kegs and is distributed in U.S.A, Iceland and the U.K but they do intend on expanding their distribution.
The beers at Einstök Ölgerd
Einstök Ölgerd consists of three craft beers with two seasonal ones that offer a variety of colour and flavour uniquely packaged with their symbol of a Viking and two axes on each bottle.
They are also uniquely coloured to suit the flavour of the beers making it not only delightful to drink but to look at too.
Icelandic White Ale is brewed in a century old Belgian tradition with flavours of classic wit bier, coriander and orange peel with the Icelandic water delivering a refreshing and cool taste of citrus and spice notes with an ABV of 5.2% it is also white in colour.
Pale Ale is the blend of American and Bavarian craft with American Cascade hops and Northern brewer hops that create a Viking version that is mild with slight toffee flavours and an aroma of hops with an ABV of 5.6% with a light blue colour.
Toasted Porter is a dark blue colour that is rich with notes of espresso and dark chocolate with liquorice and toffee hints and an ABV of 6.0%
Arctic Berry is limited edition ale that has witbier flavour with bilberries that are hand – picked near the Arctic Circle. It consists of wheat and pilsner malt, oats, Bavarian noble hops with an ABV of 5.2% and was made in celebration of the summer.
Icelandic Doppelbock is only available in the holiday season as a winter celebration brew with malted Barley and chocolate tones with a slight whisky aftertaste to keep you warm.
It consists of Munich, Pilsner, chocolate and crystal malt with Bavarian hops and an ABV of 6.7% and is a green festive colour with a reindeer adorning the label.
The beers of Einstok are 100% vegan, can be bought as a 6 pack and you can have a look out for the next ale that will be produced soon….Juniper Bock.
Visit Einstök Ölgerd Brewery
A visit to the brewery will take you on a guided tour with the professional brew master Balder that has a laboratory and some great ideas along with recipes to make up the unique tastes of the Einstok Olgerd craft beers but it would be a good suggestion to invest in a warm coat and some snow boots if this is where you would like to go as the weather is freezing but the beer refreshing enough to get you into the Viking zone where you can enjoy the colourful beers that are filled with unique flavours and refreshing tastes that will tingle in your mouth.
Furuvellir Akureyri Iceland, Iceland
Editor-in-Chief and Wine Writer
Michael is an online enthusiast, with a lot of knowledge about online marketing. Traveling around the world to hunt for the perfect wine. Latest on Sicily, where Etna has a huge impact on the taste, which is strong with a bitter aftertaste for the youngest wines, but older wines are fantastic. Drinking wine, and writing about them, are one the passions. Remember to drink responsibly 🙂