Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Reflections

Well, the Primátor Stout on tap at PK is done with for the time being, replaced by Eggenberg Dark Lager, which is quite a nice beer in my opinion.

From what I have seen the couple of times I have been in Pivovarský klub it proved to be rather popular with the regulars and as I have stated elsewhere, as has Pivní Filosof, it really is a very nice stout - I even suggested to the staff at PK on Monday that it would be good to have it on a permanent basis, and not just in bottles - the sooner they are available the better.

The last month or so has been very encouraging for me, having been surrounded by multiple variations on the theme of pale lager it is fantastic to see ale getting some attention. Of course there are the excellent Kocour beers as well as Primátor with it's EPA and now stout. Minipivovar Žamberk also make a very good stout, and an Old Ale which is apparently quite good. So the future for ale in the Czech Republic would seem to be bright, and despite the sometimes overwhelming evidence to the contrary, there is a demand for variety, and people are willing to give a good product a go.

Which begs the question, when will the supermarket buyers sit up and take notice? If the majority of buyers are anything like those of the Marks and Spencer franchise here, they are probably happily complacent and convinced that there is no market. Yet from my conversations with a wide range of people throughout the country I get a distinct sense that while the market for specialist brews maybe small, it is growing.

I am lucky that my local supermarket stocks most of the Primátor range, but if I want Svijany then I have to go to Tesco, if I want Herold I am completely at a loss - although I did discover that a small drinks shop just up the street sells Chodovar, the only non InBev/SABMiller/Heineken beer they have.

Would a Czech version of BeerRitz be viable?

2 comments:

  1. "when will the supermarket buyers sit up and take notice?".
    Hard to say. It is something that I've been pondering for quite some time already. Problem is that here, and in many more countries, beer is considered pretty much a generic product, not a drink.

    If you don't believe this, go to a supermarket and look at how people buy wine and beer. Most people will take some time looking around the shelves before picking a bottle of wine, not so with beer.

    You can put a wide arrange of beers, of many styles, at a good price, but most people will still pick their 20x case of Gambáč or whatever similar thing, just as they do with butter, without looking around. And it doesn't even have to do with price. Regent Ležák at Tesco is 12CZK, wich is about the same price as Staropramen Světlý and a lot cheaper than rubbish like Stella, yet, guess which one sells better (the question of which one is better is answered).

    Things are slowly changing though, the fact that the supermarket chains have started to stock "alternative" beers, or brands, means that people buy them in enough numbers.

    PS: for Herold, check my beer shopping guide, if you don't mind taking the tram or the metro, you can find them all at really good prices.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Have no problem taking the metro or tram anywhere - great thing about this city is that everywhere is really easy to get to.

    ReplyDelete