Sunday, September 16, 2012

beer experimenting

I like beer.  lots of other folks like beer.  beer is delicious.  beer is flavorful.  beer has bubbles.  in Sweden lots of people also like beer.  as I have said before, beer is expensive.  by expensive I mean that when I got off the train and was hanging around in the train station and ordered a beer, it cost 73 SEK (Swedish Kroner) which, depending on the exchange rate (I have gotten about 6.4 SEK to 1 USD so far) is about $11.50 for the beer.  what kind of beer, you ask.  well, let me tell you.  it was Swedish beer (meaning local).  not specialty local.  not microbrew local.  it's the most common and popular beer in Sweden (besides Carlsberg which is Danish).  that's like going into a bar in the Unite States and ordering a draft budweiser and having the bartender charge you $11.  you'd probably laugh at the bartender, refuse the beer on principle, and go to the nearest liquor store (or supermarket) and buy a six pack of cans for less than $10.

not in Sweden.  people willingly pay $10 or more for regular beer.  why?  I am not so sure.  but I think systembolaget might have something to do with it.  systembolaget is a government run (yes, the government regulates the purchase of liquor here!)  organization that regulates the sale of alcoholic beverages that have more than 3,5% alcohol.  budweiser, for comparison, is 5,0% alcohol.  so if you want water beer you need to go to a 9-5 store (with an armed guard) to buy it.  this obviously includes liquor and wine as well.
beers purchased at the systembolaget in Malmo, sweden
a beer lineup from the systembolaget in Malmo
anyways, I was in the country for more than a week (almost two) before I made my way to the systembolaget with Devo who was visiting for a couple of days via Paris (yes, there's an app for that).  of course we went crazy and bought a bunch of specialty and local beers including microbrews, as well as some wine.  you know what they say... when in rome!  we lined up the beers afterwards on the table after deciding it was worth a picture.  I am not a beer expert, but most of the beers have been excellent so far.  more to come if I find a favorite.
local beers purchased at the systembolaget
the close up of beers bought at the systembolaget in Malmo

skål! (pronounced skole)

No comments:

Post a Comment