After seeing Knut's comment on an earlier post about the chances of Ølbutikken being open on a Monday evening being rather slim, I made a quick foray into a nearby supermarket while out for a smoke, rather than risking arriving at Ølbutikken and finding it closed. Even the supermarket was a mini Nirvana compared to the supermarkets here in Germany, with a load of British and Belgian beers that are simply not available here. I resisted temptation and stuck with Danish brews. Although I had been tipped off to look out for Mikkeller, Amager and Djævlebryg beers (thanks BeerNut), there were none on offer in this place. I contented myself with a couple from Nørrebro, as I knew I would not make it there later in the evening, and a couple from Svaneke Bryghus.
I worked a bit later than anticipated -- in fact I was one of the last to leave their office -- so hopped on the train back to the city centre, dropped my bottles off in my bag safely stored in the hotel, and marched (carefully I might add, because of the snow) to BrewPub København to pass an hour or so before I had to head to the airport.
For those who haven't been, I found this to be a rather cosy little spot, passing through a small courtyard and then down steps to the bar and restaurant in a half-cellar. The room with the bar is simple, with a small bar and a few small tables, and one long table at which there was a group of people already sitting. Off this is a long room with laid out tables for diners. I sat at the bar. There seemed to be a pretty big choice of, I don't know how many, of their own beers, and a couple from Mikkeller and Great Divide (Hibernation and Hercules) on draught, and several more bottled beers, including Bigfoot, which I was sorely tempted by.
As it was, I began with their Atlantic IPA, a nice amber beer with a soft caramel undertone and an assertivly, distinctly cascade influenced hop bitterness and flavour. I had to ask, and indeed, it's made with challenger and cascade, hence the Atlantic moniker. I really enjoyed this beer, and the almost peppery effect it had. In fact, I could taste the hops long after I left the place. I should have left it till last perhaps.
Next I chose the Ludwig Wittgenstein, a Belgian-influenced wit beer, being a hazy golden colour with a dense white head. I would have assumed it was German with that name, but it definitely leaned towards the Belgian camp. Although not as tartly refreshing as most Belgian wits I've tried, it had a nice fresh lemony citric aroma, and in the mouth this also came out, with a soft touch of warming, earthy spiciness. It did have a slight vegetal edge, but that actually worked well with it. I found it quite fullish and satisfying and would happily have another.
Running out of time I asked the barman to pick one, and he chose the Doonesbury Pale Ale. This was really malty, in the sense of freshly crushed grains, but definitely not sweet. It was light on the tongue and easy drinking with the juicy malts being the focus, and little in the biterness department. Well, I could still taste the Alantic I think! I liked this for it's malty simplicity, but it was overshadowed by the previous two.
Finally, I got a generous taster of their Coltrane Imperial Stout after seeing other customers try before they buy. Why didn't I think of that earlier! This had a lovely, rich, roasty aroma, and despite being 8.1% and a full on roasted malt flavour, it was beautifully light and wonderfully balanced. I'll be back for more.
Unfortunately I had to leg it for the train, although I did have to turn back after realising I didn't have my hat and gloves. And they weren't on the bar where I left them either. Hmmm. A quick look around revealed that an oldish lady had them on a chair beside her, beside her own hat and gloves. Strange. I retreived them while she mumbled in Danish, and scarpered.
A couple of people have told me that Nørrebro is far better than Apollo or Brewpub. Well, Apollo was worth a punt because I like to try stuff out myself, and it was within staggering distance of my hotel of course, but I wouldn't go back. But I really enjoyed my hour and fifteen minutes in Brewpub. I would have happily sat there all night sampling their wares. The barmen were also friendly and willing to talk, and weren't all "certainly Sir" like in Apollo.
If Nørrebro is so superior, I expect to have an orgasm on my first sip of their beer. Crap! I just remembered I bought a couple of their bottles... Might be time to experiment so.