In just nine days, the first annual Czech Beer Festival takes its shot at establishing a springtime Oktoberfest in Bohemia. Not only are the first advertisements starting to show up, but I’ve just received confirmation that the beer list has expanded well beyond Pilsner Urquell, Budvar and Staropramen. In fact, it seems a slew of smaller producers will be represented.
According to the organizers, the beers on tap now include 16 brands. First, the usual suspects:
- Pilsner Urquell (SABMiller)
- Kozel (SABMiller)
- Gambrinus (SABMiller)
- Radegast (SABMiller)
- Staropramen (InBev)
- Ostravar (InBev)
- Braník (InBev)
That leaves us with nine smaller producers, some of which are rather unusual picks. (As in there’s no Bernard.) Witness the fitness:
- Černá Hora
Not a bad selection. However, it does bring up a few questions:
Whatever happened to Primátor, which was supposed to be included when we first wrote about the Czech Beer Festival?
Does this mean that Primátor’s special beer for dogs is also off the table?
Where did Krušovice go — and why?
What beers from each brewery are going to be present? Will Janáček serve its Comenius? Will Jihlava offer Jihlavský Grand? Or will it all be 10° and 12° světlý ležák, the pale lagers that dominate 95% of all local consumption?
In other words, it’s a great thing that the Czech Beer Festival plans to offer sixteen beers, a few of which are rarely seen in Prague. But are all sixteen going to be more or less imitations of each other?
In nine days and about an hour and a half, we’ll all find out…