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Harbour lights up

Sweden's first brewpub opened 18 months ago, in Stockholm's Old Town. The Gamla Stans Bryggeri ("Old Town Brewery ) is in a 1920s customs shed, right on the harbour.

A smart, copper-clad brewhouse is surrounded by a circular bar. There is a stage for live music (Wilson Pickett has played there), a bistro (with German sausage dishes) and a white-tablecloth dining area strong on fish dishes.

For the moment, the brewery has only one product, Faerskoel ("Fresh Beer"). This brew, with a huge head and good lace-work, is an appropriately fresh-tasting, light-bodied, soft mild, unfiltered golden lager of 5 per cent. It has a gentle, all-Saaz, hop character, and is krausened (partially-fermented wort is blended with the green beer to encourage a second fermentation).

Young brewer Lennart Olsson formerly worked for Spendrups.

The Old Town was established by restaurateur brothers Mikael and Per Alalmberg, both home-brewers. Their financial backer is Jan Stenback, Swedens Rupert Murdoch.

The threesome lobbied for a law to permit brew-pubs. They were so confident of success that they were building before the legislation was passed.

A new micro will open in the King's Island district of central Stockholm any day now under the name Kungsholmens Kvarters. Partners are entrepreneur Peder Jonsson and star home-brewer Hakan Lundgren. The brewery is in a former textile warehouse. Pilot brews have included the lightly smooth, malty, complex Lundgrens Lager, with American hops, and an impressively dry Blitz Bitter inspired by Hop Back Summer Lightning.

Published Online: APR 19, 2000
Published in Print: JAN 1, 1997
In: What's Brewing

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