Danish Language Blog

Mikkeller in Copenhagen, An International Haven for Craft Beer Posted by on Jul 31, 2015 in Uncategorized

Mikkeller microbrewery in Copenhagen is no hidden secret.  It remains as one the must stops when traveling through anywhere in Europe, especially Scandinavia.  In fact, going to the original just might be worth the trip on its own.  It’s a genius collaboration on beer making, a refreshing and high-quality take on a craft that all too often gets overdone, over-brewed, over-thought in a worldwide microbrewery culture that is becoming more snobbish than truly crafty.

Mikkeller Bar is a must visit in Copenhagen...or San Francisco or Bangkok or Seoul.  The Denmark-born microbrewery is considered a gold standard in the craft beer business. (Photo courtesy of http://nogne-o.blogspot.hu)

Mikkeller Bar is a must visit in Copenhagen…or San Francisco or Bangkok or Seoul. The Denmark-born microbrewery is considered a gold standard in the craft beer business.
(Photo courtesy of http://nogne-o.blogspot.hu)

Mikkel Borg Bjergsø founded the brewery with his twin brother, Jeppe Jarnit-Bjergso in 2006.  It was their way, so it goes, to bring small batch, home-style beer to the public.  Mikkeller does not have its own brewery, but rather works on a collaboration effort, or “phantom brewing”, where Mikkel uses his own genius–and it really is a crafted genius more than a slew of home runs–along with the top beer makers to turn e-mail conversations into beers that smack you in the palate and make you realize that you might be tasting beer as we should know it for the first time.

The success and idea is not without drama, as Mikkel, who runs Mikkeller in Copenhagen, is at odds with his brother and original founding member, who now runs a bar in Brooklyn.  But the details of that feud will be spared–you can read the New York Times profile here–as will the trite practice of talking about beers like they are wines.  The point then is to really let the beer and product of this talented creation to speak for itself: go.  And if you need reading material on the flight or tram, pick up “Mikkeller’s Book of Beer”.  You can find their online store here, which runs in tandem with the Danish brewery Øl.  (Mikkeller has and does work with many different breweries globally.)

Mikkeller has moved international as well.  Mikkeller in San Francisco opened up in July 2013 and in Bangkok, Thailand in 2014 (where they have their own microbreweries in partner with Thai breweries to keep prices “local”), as well as in Seoul, and soon in Tokyo (grand opening August 22).

It’s not simply another fantastic beer making place.  Most beers are only done once, and the taps mix beer, water carbon dioxide at a perfect temperature for each beer.

The list on your first visit could be daunting.  But if you need a suggestion (as far as I can remember from my blurry visit in December 2013 and from what I can get my hands on where I live in Budapest) is hard to do, since the best ones tend to be the small batches.  The standard, though, is the Beer Geek Brunch Weasel, an Imperial Stout.  For a closer look, check out THE ARCHITECT – A DOCUMENTARY ABOUT MIKKELLER.

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About the Author: Tony Kitchen

Tony is a seasoned traveler who lived in Busan, South Korea from 2008-2012. While living in South Korea, he traveled extensively around Asia. After leaving, he spent 100 days traveling from Russia to Germany and many places in between. Currently, he lives and works in Budapest, Hungary, focusing on South Korean and East Asian business. Tony has an M.A. in International Relations with a specific focus on South Korean-U.S. relations and North Korea.