Today beer tastes fairly similar everywhere. Why concentrate on brewing in the Nordic countries?

Well, I’m interested in that little bit of beer culture which is local. By local I mean the cultures where I feel at home, namely the Nordic and Baltic countries in Northern Europe. I come from Finland and I have many stories to tell about brewing in the North, even to fellow Nordic people. I have co-authored two beer books in Finnish, one about traditional Finnish farmhouse ale sahti and one about modern homebrewing.

This site looks at Nordic beer from a brewer’s perspective. Most texts on archaeology, history, ethnology or even beer are written by people with little brewing experience, and supplementing current knowledge with a brewer’s point of view appears to be fruitful. I have brewed more than 250 batches of beer at home and met hundreds of brewers. Some of my brewing experiments will be also documented on this site.

While talking about brewing, I try to keep those who do not brew interested. Nordic and Baltic farmhouse ales offer a unique showcase to beer history. Want to know what the beer in the Viking or Middle ages was like and how it was made? Just follow traditional farmhouse brewers of the North in action – their ordinary brew day brew would be called elsewhere living history or experimental archaeology.

I write slowly besides my job as an industrial mathematician, as well many other beer and cider projects. The site will be gradually filled with stories about beer history, people, places, brewing techniques, beer ingredients and recipes. Whenever I see a need and have time, I will update and improve the stories. The major updates will be announced at the News section of the site, which can be followed like a blog. Updates as well as other beery stuff will also appear on Facebook and Twitter.

In this site the content I have created is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. However, I will also use work of others (especially photos), attributing the work to them, and for that content I cannot grant permissions of any kind.

Kippis –Skål – Cheers!

Mika Laitinen

My Books and Other Writings

My article about brewing Finnish farmhouse ale sahti appeared in July/August 2014 issue of Brew Your Own magazine. The following two books are written in Finnish and available in Nordic countries for example from Adlibris. I also blog about beer and cider in Finnish at Maltainen.

The first book describes history, culture, brewing traditions, how to brew instructions of sahti. Sahti: Elävä Muinaisolut (Sahti: Ancient Ale with a Living Tradition) was written with a freelance writer Johannes Silvennoinen and geekiest of the beer geeks, Hannu Nikulainen. The book was published in October 2015.

Sahti: Elävä muinaisolut

The second book gives easy hands-on guidance to homebrewing. Rakkaudella Pantua: Kotioluen Uusi Tuleminen (Brewed with Passion: The Revival of the Homebrew)  was written with a journalist and beer sommelier Maria Markus and appeared in April 2016. The book deals also with Nordic ingredients, like juniper, birch and alder.

Rakkaudella pantua