Beer & Traveling the World

As beer lovers, it's only natural that we would want to plan our travels around beer. The good news: there are companies that have beer focused tours!

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Good morning. I’m writing you today from Dubrovnik, Croatia (aka Kings Landing for GOT fans). I’m on vacation, and as such this newsletter will be travel focused - after all, there is nothing better than drinking a good beer when traveling.

-Brandon Copeland

Beer & Traveling The World

One of my favorite ways to travel is through beer - my wife and I keep a running list of all of the breweries we have visited, and we are currently up to #183. Every country we go to, we seek out local breweries and try to take tours wherever we can.

If you’re looking for a more structured approach, believe it or not, beer tourism trips are available to a number of different countries, primarily in Europe. I have pulled the following tour companies from research - I can’t vouch for the quality of the tours, but I have to say they look pretty cool. Book at your own risk!

Epic Beer Trips appears to be mostly UK/Ireland based, with current offerings available for beer tours to Scotland, England and Wales, and Northern Ireland. These trips include loads of beer tastings, tours of breweries, private events where you get to meet the brewers and food pairings with beer.

The price tag is high for these trips, but everything is included, down to the hotels, beer, and food. Flights to and from the destination are not included, but that is to be expected. If I had to choose one of these, personally I would lean toward the Northern Ireland trip, but they all look great.

Bon Beer Voyage has been in business for over 20 years and offers a variety of beer tour experiences, with an emphasis on private beer cruises. These trips include “Amsterdam to Bruges”, “Belgium and France”, and “Rhine Christmas Market Cruise - Zurich to Amsterdam”.

The great thing about these cruises is that they are relatively smaller vessels with 5 star accommodations. For instance, on the Christmas Market Cruise, the maximum capacity for guests is 163, so you will be on a large boat but not a monstrosity as if you’re on a Carnival Cruise. Pricing is similar if not slightly more than Epic Beer Trips, but there are more options and seemingly a longer track record of successful trips.

If you’re looking for a beer vacation that is a bit more party oriented, Thirsty Swagman may be what you’re looking for. They have a number of tours, but it seems they their focus is primarily around Munich, with tours for Oktoberfest and Springfest. Having been to Oktoberfest, I can say that it’s definitely worth going; the beer tents are a spectacle, and the festival that surrounds the tents is fun, especially the Toboggan.

Having a group of people to visit with enhances the experience, especially since the tour takes care of your beer tent reservations. These can be particularly difficult to secure - when we went, I was able to land reservations at the Hofbrau Haus tent, but it required emailing them, waiting for 6 weeks to see if I got the reservation, then sending the money via PayPal and crossing my fingers that we didn’t just get scammed.

Would You Go On A Beer Vacation?

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Beer Trivia Question

🍺 What is the most popular beer in Croatia?

Read to the end to find out if you're right!

Homebrewing Equipment Highlight

I converted my kegerator over 10 years ago, and while I have replaced the draft lines several times, I have maintained the same strategy - using clamps for all the lines. This ends up being a complete pain - anytime you want to adjust the line, or even just switch attachments, you have a crimped line to deal with. Butterfly hose clamps have offered a slightly more convenient setup, but they are still frustrating to deal with.

I am looking to upgrade my draft system with Duotight fittings - this are leakproof and very easy to use. I currently can’t vouch for them because I haven’t tried them, but once I do I’ll write a review of my experience. However, I can say that these are the connections that come built in to the KOMOS kegerators.

Brewgr Recipe of the Week

I am a big fan of the cold IPA trend that has gained momentum in recent years - if you’re confused what makes an IPA “cold”, it just refers to the fact that it is fermented with lager yeast at lower temperatures. This makes the beer crisp and easy to drink, but with all the hop character you’ve grown to love with IPAs.

This cold IPA recipe looks like an excellent place to start - dominated by pilsner malt and hopped with a combination of cascade, citra, amarillo, and simcoe, this will have incredible aroma with a sharp but fruity bitterness. Might just clone it myself for the next brew…

As expected from the last poll, corny kegs still remain the most popular option for those looking to keg their homebrew. This makes sense because they are the most commonly available, and now there is the option to buy them brand new, which reduces the “ick” factor that came with the O.G. used soda kegs. However, I do stand by that I think the Torpedo Kegs are the best on the market.

And the Answer Is...

🍺 Ožujsko is the most popular beer in Croatia, with 10 bottles being consumed every second. I can claim a few of those bottles in the statistic the past few days…

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Happy Brewing!

- Brandon, Brew Great Beer Team

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