8 Feb 2009

Ironic history

Braník will never be mentioned among the best of Czech brewing, quite the contrary. Today, the beer seems to be the favourite among lower income people that drink it straight from bottles at room temperature. But it wasn't always like that. You can still find people that remember it with love and a lot of nostalgia, specially the dark beer.

But it's not really about the beers from Braník, past and present, what I wanted to talk, but about a coaster of Braník that I found the other day, or actually, about the text written on the back, which in Czech goes pretty much like this.
"Braník Brewery was established in 1899 by brewers and publicans as a social brewery as defense against big breweries."
Then it goes on with the usual marketing bollocks.
What a bunch of idealists those brewers and publicans where. But history is cruel. Today Braník belongs to AB-InBev, and it's not much more than a cheaper version of Staropramen. The brewery was shut down a couple of years ago, with production being shifted across the river to Smíchov and the future of the beautiful facilities is in the shape of luxury flats, if the financial crisis so allows.

Those valiant gentlemen must be turning over in their graves.

Na Zdraví!

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6 comments:

  1. When i worked for Inbev there was a competition. Who could take the best photo with an Inbev product. I wanted to find some homeless people and say 'Branik, helping the homeless since 1899'. I resisted the temptation. Irony is not their strong point.

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  2. Well, seeing this ber mat, i would say they actually have a pretty finely-tuned sense of irony. That or a pretty sick sense of humour... ;)

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  3. I want to be called Ian/Iain too!

    I'm surprised no-one has thought to flog this in the UK as a super premium fine Czech lager...

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  4. I remember getting Branik in the Co-op in Alness (north of Inverness for those not in the know) a few years ago, for something like a pound a bottle. Then the Co-op started its own "Czech Lager" which was rather similar and also made by the Prazske Pivovary.....

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  5. You've been drinking too much Braník from a bottle at room temperature....

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