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Day Four: Brewery ‘Ij, Organic Brewery de Leckere and Heineken Brewery!

April 26, 2012

Harpoon brewer Matt DeLuca (who recently brewed the 100 Barrel Series #40 Black IPA), along with 20 other Harpoon employees, is hanging out in Europe this week! He’ll be blogging about their experience in The Netherlands this week – so stay tuned!

Day 4 was a big one.  Jopen was awesome and we drank well into the night once we got back to Amsterdam, so most people were a bit haggard leaving the hotel today. But like yesterday, spirits were high and lots of excitement was building for the next few stops.  Our first stop was the small Brewery ‘Ij, situated right on the ‘Ij River in Amsterdam and adjacent to a big, beautiful windmill.

T’ Ij was established in the mid 1980’s in a former bathhouse by a local musician who used some royalty money to start a brewery.  He saw some dissatisfaction with what was available in the local beer market and took it upon himself to spice things up a bit and get something new out there.

Their beers were solid and we had a great time and didn’t wanted to leave.  We had the whole place to ourselves, granted it was only 10:30 in the morning, and we left fired up for our next stop.

Second stop was de Lekere Brewery in Den Bosch which was about an hour’s drive by bus southeast of Amsterdam.  De Lekere focuses on organic beers and treated us to a very intimate tasting along with some local snack food.  We got a good glow on here.


And finally we arrived at our final stop which was the Heineken Brewery in Den Bosch, which is absolutely enormous as you can imagine.  We took a long walk around the facility and got to see how the world’s second largest brewery did their thing, which was pretty impressive.

Well, that’s it for now.  Tomorrow we head to Berkel-Enshot to visit La Trappe Brewery, and then to St. Christoffel Brewery in Roermond.  Night!

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