Estonia’s Põhjala Brewery is the 55th best beer maker in the world

According to the users of RateBeer, a beer connoisseur website, the Estonian brewery, Põhjala, is the 55th best beer maker in the world.

Põhjala (“the Nordics” in a rough translation) was rated 55th in the world among 35,000 breweries in the world. In Europe, the Estonian brewery is among the best 15, according to the users of RateBeer.

The CEO of Põhjala Brewery, Enn Parel, said the recognition of the international beer connoisseurs makes the company very happy.

“This shows that our brew masters can create interesting products that speak to beer drinkers,” he said in a statement. “Last year, we didn’t have the chance to visit beer festivals to introduce our products, so we’re thrilled that the fans of Põhjala all over the world have remained faithful to us.”

The CEO of Põhjala Brewery, Enn Parel. Photo by Lauri Laan.

Among the 100 best breweries in the world there are many that Põhjala has cooperated with.

“We’ve cooperated with eleven of the top 100 breweries; it’s common to exchange tricks and knowhow among craft breweries to improve their artwork,” Parel asserted. Põhjala, for example, in 2019 brewed a strong Baltic porter, the Baltic Pride, together with the Polish craft brewery, Browar Pinta.

“We had a friendly argument as to where the Baltic porter is from, and then had the idea to develop this historic beer together,” he noted.

Chris Pilkington, originally from Scotland, is the head brewer in Põhjala. Photo by Lauri Laan.

Põhjala also cooperated with the British brewery, Verdant, who is also represented in the top 100. The company used Zoom and other online platforms to cooperate with the Britons as due to the coronavirus pandemic, they couldn’t engage in traditional brewing cooperation.

The most of the top 100 breweries are located in the US

“Verdant brewed Põhjala’s Baltic Porter and we brewed their double IPA, Wind Forecast, which is still available in our tap room,” Parel said.

The most of the top 100 best breweries in the world, according to the RateBeer user base, are located in the United States – 63, to be precise. Nine breweries are from the England, eight from Belgium, five from Canada, three from Denmark and Poland, two from Scotland and the Netherlands and one from Norway, Sweden and Germany.

Põhjala was founded in 2011 by four Estonian beer fans and home brewers and it has grown, according to the brewery, to be the largest small craft brewery in the Baltic states. It brews its beer at the Noblessner quarter in the Estonian capital, Tallinn, where it also has its tap room.

Põhjala brewery in Tallinn, Estonia. Photo by Põhjala.

The brewery’s sales in 2019 were close to €4.7 million. It employs over 40 people, exports to over 40 countries and has been among the 100 best breweries, according to the RateBeer users, for the last four years.

RateBeer was founded in May 2000 as a forum for beer drinkers to exchange information and share opinions of beer.

Cover: A selection of Põhjala craft beers. Photo by Põhjala.

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