Beer Economics Review: DadoBier Ilex

Who doesn’t like beer? And even more, who doesn’t like caffeine? Mix the two together and you should get an amazing beverage, right? Well, not so much. I will try to explain why.

DadoBier is the first brazilian microbrewery. It’s located in the mid-latitude city of Porto Alegre, in the southern state of Rio Grande do Sul. The state prides itself for having the best wine in Brazil and, well, they have the climate for it! Also for making beer, since the southern region of the country is the largest producers of barley.

The state is the second largest producer and the largest consumer of a commodity called Erva-Mate, or just Mate. It’s a herb which is mainly used for tea and has a high caffeine content. If you walk around the city of Porto Alegre, you will see hundreds of people drinking the stuff wherever they go. Think that the British are big tea drinkers? The Gauchos (natives from the state) would put them to shame. Brazil itself is not a big tea drinking country, but the Gauchos consume a whooping 10kg of Mate per capita per year, which puts them ahead of Turkey, the biggest tea drinking country in the world (at 7.32kg/pc/py).

But I digress. So thinking that having the climate and ingredients for a good beer would give them an edge? Well, not so much. Adding a bit of their favourite drink to the beer? That didn’t work so well. Now add that beer to their custom made Cuia-shaped glass? Well, that’s the recipe to get flat and bland beer. In their novelty glass, I couldn’t pour the beer and take a photo fast enough for the head to hold shape. The beer is ok, but the flavour changes quite a bit very quickly, most likely due to oxidation due to the lack of the protecting head.

I have brewed with tea before and I am not sure the techniques they used to add the mate to the brew, but I can say that they were unsuccessful.

Now for the price. The average citizen of Rio Grande do Sul is better off than the average Brazilian. The beer is slightly expensive, at R$14 (£4) for a pint, it is still quite expensive for the local working man. But as it so happens to microbreweries in Brazil, producers manage to keep the clientele very selected. You can find Dadobier online, if you so choose, but most places are out of stock and, in Porto Alegre, one of the few places where you can find the beer is at their restaurant. This leads to you buying overpriced food with it. So, again, just like with Amazon Beer, if you are not part of the elite or pseudo-rich, this beer can be seen as something you can treat yourself to in a special occasion.

Knowing how much it takes to produce beer and having most of the ingredients locally available, overpricing beer that isn’t all that good seems to be the thing to do nowadays. Microbrewers in Brazil are having a field day with the new middle class!

Beer Economics Review: Amazon Beer Stout Açaí

I am not sure if this is a good idea, but I will publish a quick beer review worth of notice.

My girlfriend, who travels a lot, gave me several beers from local breweries from different parts of Brazil, which is great! Yesterday, we decided to drink it and, my God, what a tasty beer!

I am no beer connoisseur, but I can appreciate a good beer. And I guess it would have won the title of best beer in Brazil! It is quite subtle, coffee-y taste with not much taste of Açaí, still with a relatively high alcohol content. I wouldn’t expect the extremely hot city of Belem to have been able to produce high quality stout, of all beers, but they did the job! If you know anything about brewing, fermenting at constant, relatively low temperature is crucial, as temperature fluctuation can damage the overall body and taste of the beer. Belem do Para is the largest Brazilian city near the Equator with temperatures averaging around 28C throughout the year. It’s located at the Amazon River Delta and, adding all these factors up, it makes it one of the most humid cities on Earth. All these factors make Belem a nightmare for brewers (and for people to cope with the heat too).

Controlling the brewing temperature must cost the brewery a small fortune on heat belts, AC units etc. Also, everything (except the Açaí and water) must be imported, since the city’s climate is unfavourable for the growth of any of the raw products necessary to produce the simplest beers. All of this is reflected in the price. A 330ml bottle can cost you up to £5. These prices are also not compatible with the means of the average Brazilian, so you can only find it for sale in speciality shops and fancy restaurant, which is a pity.

With a GDP per capita of £3809 (£317/month), and 75% of the population living below that line, most of the population won’t be able to afford one single bottle of this lovely beer.

Well, that’s free capitalism for you! A city, which in my opinion, overcame all the difficulties of brewing a quality product, managed to produce something unique, but only for a selected few.

Now that I have calmed down, I can conclude. It’s a very good beer.

Eating up the culture… and washing it down with some beer!

It’s been 19 days since my last post… well, I took some time off and, during that time, I took a little weekend trip to good old Bruges. “It’s like a f-ing fairytale or something”. It’s a great place! I love it so much that this was my 7th time there! The chocolate, the crepes, the canals, the buildings, the architecture… it’s sooo great! I am kind of lost for words. I was even more lost for words after tasting what belgium is most famous for: The Beer.

There are a few parallels between Belgium and Britain. In Britain, when you go to the local supermarket, off license or restaurant, you can find doubles and triples, but usually comes in “food”.. double cream pastries, triple chocolate chip cookies, double chocolate brownies… In Belgium, that comes in beer. Dubbel and Trippel… I prefer the latter, I must say! It’s great!

During my 48hrs in Bruges, these were the beers I tasted:

  • Malhuer
  • Prior Tripple
  • Chimay Rood
  • MortSubite (Eeewwwww)
  • Rochefort Trappistes 8
  • Rochefort Trappistes 10
  • La Trappe
  • Duvel
  • Brugse Zot
  • Straffe Hendrik
  • De Koninck
  • Oude Kriek Boon (Eeeewwwww)
  • Smiske Dubbel
  • Brugge Wit
  • Delirium Nocturnum
  • KasteelBier 8% Rouge
  • KasteelBier 11% Blond
  • Chimay Grand Reserve 11%
  • Smiske Blouwd
  • Smiske Bruin

It was a night to remember! And parts of it which I can’t, to be honest, but it was a great night! Me with the old ball and chain and my new Canadian friends! Amazing!

Wienerschnitzel mit Kartoffelsalat… what a mouthful!

Probably my favoutire food in the world… no, I am not Austrian/German, but this food is special! Having one of these with a cold beer is one of the reasons why culinary is such an awesome thing to learn more!

I really should buy a different plate for blog photos! Change it a bit, right?

Wagerberg’s Products……. a collection so far!

Wagerberg at full steam! Well, this is the labelled collection, so far! Plus the Beetroot Mead that is not included in the picture! Apart from those, I have brewed a few more products, which will be labelled in time (They take way too much time!)

Wagerberg is a home brewery which I set up and, soon, I will start selling the drinks and all proceeds will go to charity!

Products so far (which I have given away from free to friends at house parties! Want to be my friend?):

  • Wagerberg Original Pilsner
  • WillHoneyWeiss Spiced Honey Weissbier
  • Tobias KinderDoppelBock Bock Lager
  • StrawberLy Garweiss Strawberry Weissbier
  • Pri’s Coffee Ale
  • Ray TeaBaggins Tea Ale
  • Wagerberg’s Backyard Plum Wine
    • Missing from the image:
  • Feel The Beat Beetroot Mead
  • Strawberly Mead
  • Raspberry Mead
  • Very Hoppy India Pale Ale
  • Sour as Life Sourdough Pale Ale

Thanks for reading!

A collection: So far

It’s official! I have the homebrew bug! So far, I have brewed 4 beers and all successful so far! But unfortunately, one of the brew I just did for the heck of it! Didn’t really have anyone or any celebration in mind, so I didn’t have a label for it. For the other three that did have a label, here is a picture so far!

From left to right: A sourdough lager, a doppel bock and a spiced honey weissbier. I hope you all enjoy them as much as I have!

Sourdough lager, Doppel Bock and Spiced Honey Weissbier... Anyone for a beer party? (I only have 110 bottles)

WillHoneyWeiss – Spiced Honey WeissBier

Hi all,

Recently, I put my breads and fancy foods aside to give a go at homebrewing… well, I have not been disappointed yet! My last brew was a spiced honey weissbier, for which I made up a recipe (based on another, of course! I will make it public if requested!). I really enjoyed how it came out! Light, slightly flat, good to have with some curry!

My friend is a bee ecologist, so when it came to name the beer, I couldn’t think of anybody else, given that the main ingredient is honey! I hope you enjoy the post, as much as I am enjoying the beer!

Wagerberg Micro-Homebrew

Well, I decided to have a crack in homebrew… and since I have the freedom to experiment, why not make a funny label???? With a funny name? My name is Wagner… after many different names, I settled on Wagerberg. Well, maybe it is not the best name… but what can I do? I am not very original! hehehe… I will share the recipe in a couple of weeks, when I finally get to taste the beer!!! I will keep you guys updated! In the meanwhile, I will try to enjoy the weather here in the UK… it is finally good for one and drink readily made, industrialized beer.

Prague, Czech Republic

What to say about it… it is just an amazing city! I just wish that the centre wasn’t overtaken by souvenir shops. Sometimes, I like to pretend I went back in time and see what cities were for the locals. These places today are rare, but when I was in Prague, that’s what I tried to do… didn’t work, as you can imagine! I wish I could though! next time, I will pop over in a very severe winter, maybe that’s as close as I will get to this fantasy of mine! Walk though the city with the same eyes that Mucha and Kafka did!