Mikkelar’s Book of Beer

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Jim
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Mikkelar’s Book of Beer

Post by Jim » Thu Apr 16, 2015 10:01 am

This stylish hardback book is the work of Danish microbrewer Mikkel Borg Bjerso and his wife Pernille Pang.

It begins with a biography of Mikkel and tells the story of his journey into the world of commercial microbrewing. A history of beer follows, with the focus firmly on European beers, also charting the rise of the large commercial breweries and the re-emergence of micros following the formation of CAMRA and the craft beer revival in the USA.

Then there’s a section on beer styles, with descriptions, brief history and examples (including, not surprisingly, beers made by Mikkelar) covering a wide range of European beers, but also taking in British and American craft beer styles. There is then a short section on beer tasting.

I found this first half of the book very interesting since while I’m familiar with the story of beer in the UK, I’m embarrassingly ignorant of continental beers and styles, so for me it was quite an education!

Around 50% of the book, though, is devoted to making your own beer. The brewing section is fairly standard in layout, starting with a description of the ingredients and taking the reader through all the stages of producing beer (covering all grain brewing only). The brewing methods are more oriented to typical US rather than UK practice – differences include using air locks on the primary and transferring to a secondary vessel to finish fermentation and clearing. This is to be expected though, as these methods are more suited to making lager styles that required longer fermentations.

Next up is a large selection of recipes, all of which seem to be clones of Mikkelar’s own beers and covers a much greater range of styles than many of the UK brewing books I’ve seen. There are also some tips on how to clone your own favourite brew.

Finally, there is a section on pairing beers with food, and even a few food recipes.

To summarise, this is a well written and attractively illustrated book and I would recommend it to any brewer who wants to widen his or her brewing (or even just drinking!) horizons to include a wider range of world beers.
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Dave S
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Re: Mikkelar’s Book of Beer

Post by Dave S » Fri Apr 17, 2015 11:40 am

Jim wrote:This stylish hardback book is the work of Danish microbrewer Mikkel Borg Bjerso and his wife Pernille Pang.

It begins with a biography of Mikkel and tells the story of his journey into the world of commercial microbrewing. A history of beer follows, with the focus firmly on European beers, also charting the rise of the large commercial breweries and the re-emergence of micros following the formation of CAMRA and the craft beer revival in the USA.

Then there’s a section on beer styles, with descriptions, brief history and examples (including, not surprisingly, beers made by Mikkelar) covering a wide range of European beers, but also taking in British and American craft beer styles. There is then a short section on beer tasting.

I found this first half of the book very interesting since while I’m familiar with the story of beer in the UK, I’m embarrassingly ignorant of continental beers and styles, so for me it was quite an education!

Around 50% of the book, though, is devoted to making your own beer. The brewing section is fairly standard in layout, starting with a description of the ingredients and taking the reader through all the stages of producing beer (covering all grain brewing only). The brewing methods are more oriented to typical US rather than UK practice – differences include using air locks on the primary and transferring to a secondary vessel to finish fermentation and clearing. This is to be expected though, as these methods are more suited to making lager styles that required longer fermentations.

Next up is a large selection of recipes, all of which seem to be clones of Mikkelar’s own beers and covers a much greater range of styles than many of the UK brewing books I’ve seen. There are also some tips on how to clone your own favourite brew.

Finally, there is a section on pairing beers with food, and even a few food recipes.

To summarise, this is a well written and attractively illustrated book and I would recommend it to any brewer who wants to widen his or her brewing (or even just drinking!) horizons to include a wider range of world beers.
A good review Jim, thanks. I'll bear it in mind if I ever start brewing outside of UK styles :?:
Best wishes

Dave

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