Microbreweries and Beer Restaurants
Micro-brews have grown in popularity. Throughout most of the past two decades, the three largest beer companies—StarBev (manufactures Staropramen), Heineken (produces Krušovice) and SABMiller (makers of Gambrinus, Kozel and Pilsner Urquell)—have bought up or edged out their smaller competitors. Lately, Czechs have started looking past “euro-taste” beers to more inventive micro-brews. As a result, growing numbers of restaurants are creating their own beers or offering beer solely from an independent brewery. During 2011, SABMiller—who own 50% of the market for Czech beer—unexpectedly opted to limit its beer yeast supply to micro-brewers (beer yeast production is not possible for the smaller breweries). However, micro-brewers rapidly discovered a different supplier with Bernard, the biggest independent brewery, and could celebrate a minor victory—the big companies are now taking them seriously.
As well as the giant breweries like Pilsner Urquell, Budvar and Staropramen there are quite a few microbreweries producing excellent lager and dark beer too. Beer made in these breweries usually has a distinctive taste where freshness is guaranteed.
Probably the most popular microbrewery and restaurant in Prague is U Fleků. The menu U Fleků is typically Czech: pork, beef, goulash, sausages, duck and chicken. Beer brewed in the site’s brewery is excellent and a brewery tour can be organized too (advance reservations are essential).
U Fleků Brewery Museum
Here you can see very old brewing machines, instruments and drinking vessels.
Open: Mon-Fri 10:00-15:00. Admission: 50 CZK. website
This pub is extremely popular among locals and tourists for starting their night off. The restaurant serves hearty Czech food at very reasonable prices. Light and dark beers from their microbrewery simply must not be missed.
Location: Vodickova 20, Prague 1. website
U Medvidku is great example of a traditional Czech pub, which is busy every night of the week. Hotel, restaurant and brewery on sight, plus Budwar and Staropramen on tap.
Location: Na Perstyne 7, Prague 1; Open: 11:30-23:00. website
This famous Czech pub is almost always full, as it’s popular among tourists and locals alike. Bustling and noisy, like a traditional Czech pub should be, U Bulovky has a very unique atmosphere which is hard to find nowadays. The beer (house lager ležák is a yeast beer, cloudy in appearance) is excellent – always fresh tasting and rich, each beer has its own unique taste.
Location: Pivovar U Bulovky, Bulovka 17, Libeň; Open: 11:00-23:00.
An old traditional pub, Pivovarsky dum is an excellent place for a pint of local beer. The menu offers sausage, beans, fried and pickled pork, dumplings and potato croquettes, along with classics such as goulash and svickova. Gleaming copper vats where the house brew is made are on display, and an angled mirror lets visitors in on a view of the malt-processing tubs.
Location: Jecna / Lipova street 15, Prague 2, Open: 11:00 – 23:30. website
Klášterní Pivovar Strahov
The Strahov monastery allowed a commercial brewery, Klášterní Pivovar Strahov, to set up shop within their precincts. Even though monks have nothing to do with the brewing process, beers here are named after St. Norbert. It is a very dark-brown beer and far more bitter than you would expect.
Location: Strahov monastery, Strahovské nádvoří 301. website
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