If I were to dream up a perfect location for a brew pub, it would probably be where the Ægir brewery is already located. At the end of one of the most picturesque fjords in Norway. The last stop an a narrow gauge railway packed with tourists during the
saison season. At the end of scenic walks and a mountain-to-fjord cycle route that gets more popular every year. At the core of the Norway in a nutshell concept, where you get what you came for crammed into a day or two. To have a brewpub, a restaurant and a hotel in such a spot sounds sensible.
They are now an integrated part of the marketing towards active tourism. If you have walked through the mountains for some days, the thought of high quality session beers on tap at the end of the trail is highly motivating. Visitrallarvegen, which, despite it’s name is in Norwegian only, shows how they are an integrated part. And they get a nice writeup in the last issue of Fjell og Vidde (not online), the magazine of the Norwegian Trekking Association, which has hundreds of thousands of members in Norway and abroad.
Sales of the Ægir beers were up 115% in 2010 compared to the previous year, which was far beyond their capacity. Most of the bottled beers are currently produced in Belgium. This is soon to change, a new brewery is under construction, meaning that they will brew all their beers in Flåm from January 2012. The present equipment will be used for one offs and special beers like today. The new facilities will even include a distillery, so a Ægir whiskey is probably being planned.
If you pass through Flåm, make sure you quench your thirst with a Rallar Amber Aleor one of the other session beers first. Then try a glass of the superb IPA. For the grand finale, you could do worse than the Natt Imperial Porter. Ask if they have any left of their limited edition that has been aged in bourbon barrels. You won’t regret it!