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Wednesday, November 2, 2016

My Pet Piva - Drinking Beer in Prague

Prague is an exceptionally cool city, almost overwhelming with stunning architecture. But it is also a city of beer, known in the Czech language as piva. This region has a history of brewing dating back to the middle 900s, so yeah, a long and established beer culture. During a recent visit I wanted to see what their beer culture was like. Yes it's similar to America in that there are many craft beers coming on the market, but I was also curious about what are the standard beers, beers you can find everywhere that are ubiquitous. How do they stack up? So rather than search out oddball beers that are hard to find, cost an arm and a leg, I decided to focus on the beers that were widely available, reasonably priced and provided a nice diversity of beer drinking experience.

The Breznak Svetle is a pilsner style that is light and bright, presenting a little bitterness and slight hoppiness. This is not a complex beer but pleasant and even-keeled for new beer folks. The Krusovice Cerne offers up mild cocoa and malt notes, soft, silky and creamy with a slight hoppiness on the back and very drinkable. The Bernard Cerny is a non-filtered lager which is not heavy handed, but with noticeable malt and hops and a mild mocha, and while refreshing, it is not a big beer that overwhelms your palette. Even the ubiquitous Pilsner Urquell (billed as the world’s first pilsner) that you’ll see everywhere, is nonetheless a mass produced beer that is crisp and clean and shows that the mass produced beers in the Czech Republic have more flavor than their American mass produced counterparts. These are very pleasant beers and you’ll find them everywhere in Prague, so when you visit, be sure to seek out some craft beers, but even if you don’t, you’ll be rewarded with these piva.


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