The International Berlin Beer Festival is a time to kick back and enjoy the company of friends while simultaneously sampling various beers from around the world.
The event is held every year on the Karl-Marx-Allee in Berlin and was officially recognised by the Guiness World Record in 2011 as the “longest beer garden in the world.”
This years event will run from 7 - 9 August 2020 in the usual spot within the Friedrichshain district. It will feature nearly 350 breweries from around 90 countries and serve around 2,000 beer varieties. Entry is completely free of charge and all are welcome to join the festivities.
The festival values inclusivity and stresses the importance of creating a safe and enjoyable environment for everyone. In past years attendance has seen nearly one million festival goers enter and walk the 2.2 kilometer stretch. Aside from all the beer drinking and lounging, festival goers can also expect to enjoy an array of musical artists and delicacies within the German cuisine.
There are a total of 18 stages scattered along the festival walkway. All of which are platforms for musicians, performers, cooking shows, and entertainment programmes. It’s similar to Oktoberfest in that aspect, just on a much smaller scale of course. Beer gardens (or Biergärtens) can be found all throughout Europe and the United States but Germany is perhaps the most well-known for them.
The first few beer gardens to ever exist originated in southern Bundesländer of Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg. Their history revolves mostly around brewing and the way in which the process was executed years ago.The lack of cooling techniques at the time prevented breweries from expanding and creating the varieties in beer types and flavors that we have now.
The Märzen (translated to March) was the most common type of beer produced. It’s a bottom-fermenting beer that uses a very specific type of yeast. This particular yeast only has the ability to ferment at temperature ranging between four and eight degrees Celsius. These distinct qualities prevented the beer from being brewed in the winter months and made it difficult to store in the summer. Brewers then proceeded to dig underground cellars in an effort to keep the beer that had already been produced cool and safe from external influences. Chestnut trees were planted above these cellars as a way to provide shade and subsequently maintain the cool temperatures in the ground below.
The idea of selling the beer directly out of the underground cellars soon arose and thus the beer garden was born. Patrons of the time had the opportunity to enjoy a beer and light snack, such as bread, in the cool shadows created by the chestnut trees and within the actual cellar itself.
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The International Berlin Beer Festival 2020
Friedrichshain, Berlin, Germany