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Craft Beer in Norway
History of beer in Norway is very connected with farm brewing, as up until 1800s almost each and every farm in the country had its own brewhouse—called bryggehus—and it was brewed using herbs and spices, as well as the original norwegian yeast, kweik. After the industrialization in the early 20th century, home brewing was outlawed, and the market is now concentrated in two hands, Hansa and Carlsberg.
The craft beer movement in Norway was introduced by a former SAS pilot, Kjetil Jikiun, who discovered the American craft beer movement in his flights to USA, and then started to imitate them at home. In 2002, he founded the most acknowledged Norwegian craft brewery, Nøgne Ø, along with Gunnar Wiig, and after having a tough time entering his own market, became a popular brewery in the US. In 2015, Hansa bought half of the company, and Kjetil ended up leaving the company after expressing his disagreement with the direction of the company. Other popular norwegian breweries are Lervig, founded by the American homebrewer Mike Murphy and considered one of the best breweries in the world, Ægir, HaandBryggeriet or Austmann.
Brewers from Norway
Reinventing A Naked Island interview
Grimstad (Norway), 04/04/2017
Tom Young (Nøgne Ø), “It’s been a battle for all of us. Kjetil started the brewery, he was Nøgne Ø in person, and he is the most influential and most known brewer in Norway. His face and his appearance here at the brewery was very important for Nøgne Ø.”