In the last days of 2021 in the Ancient Capital of Hue, German brewer Alexander Haf and his associates are eagerly preparing for the first batch of German craft beer. A new story for beer lovers in the land of heritage.
* Hello Mr. Alex, Brewer and Brewmaster are terms that not all beer drinkers are familiar with. Can you then describe what a Brewmaster is to everyone?
Both men and women can hold the title of brewmaster. To become a brewer, one must first complete basic training in contemporary breweries and then spend an additional three years obtaining a bachelor’s degree from a professional training institution. Then and only then is this person a brewer. This Brewer can enroll in specialized training programs and become eligible for a Brewmaster certificate after another three to four years of working in various positions. This procedure takes one to two years. A Brewmaster or Head Brewmaster is the real conductor for any beer brand or label in breweries all over the world.
In the modern world, brewing beer is a hobby that many people are interested in. They enjoy brewing beer as a hobby, either individually or in groups, using recipes that are already available. Some individuals will produce delectable beers while experimenting. Many of these individuals go to professional training facilities to continue honing their skills. They do this in order to gain a fundamental understanding of all types of raw materials from chemical, physical, and microbiological perspectives as well as the quality of these materials from the point of origin to the finished product, which is beer.
* So how did you get into brewing, and when did you realize you loved beer and the craft of making it?
Well, because my family is inherently attached to the daily activity of brewing beer and drinks, I went to study it after completing my military service in Germany. At that time, I had the opportunity to work as a brewer. At two renowned breweries, Lowenbrau Munich and the Munich School for Brewers and Maltsters, I successfully completed three training programs.
After obtaining my bachelor’s degree, I began to accumulate experience working in many departments in the brewing industry, as well as constantly improving my skills. I began studying at the Brewing Academy in Munich five years later and completed the training for a Brewmaster certificate in two years.
* Is there any difference between making beer and thinking about making beer when you first consider this path, Mr. Alex?
True, it is quite different. Whether I was a beer maker or a beer drinker, I like to sample a wide range of beverages from numerous breweries across the country. But we need perseverance, wisdom, experimentation, and techniques to be a Brewmaster.
*Is making beer simple for you when you are a Brewmaster like today? Because it took almost 10 years for you to share with us how the training and the skill-improvement process worked.
It’s true that I can now claim that it’s simple. I can vouch for the fact that after two years of training at Brewing Academy, I have the knowledge and abilities to comprehend the combination of ingredients used in brewing operations.
* According to the menu, the Victoria Craft Beer restaurant in Hue City will sell four different types of beer. Can you tell me a little bit about these four beers?
We began with four popular beers from the craft beer scene: Victoria Lager, Victoria Dark Lager, Victoria Red Ale, and Victoria Weiss.
Victoria Lager is a delicious and aromatic pale yellow lager made in the Bavarian style. The alcohol content ranges between 4.5 and 4.7%. The main components are premium malt, carefully chosen premium aromatic hops, unique yeast strains, and pure brewing water.
A specialty of Franconia-Bohemia, Victoria Dark Lager is brewed with smoked roasted malt. Dark Lager is a black beer with an alcohol content of between 5.2 and 5.4%. It is brewed with pure brewing water, light hops, aromatic and selectively roasted malts, and special yeast strains. This beer’s distinctive quality is its suitability for pairing with mouthwatering meat dishes.
A fruit beer with a reddish-brown color, light hop flavor, and approachable alcohol content, Victoria Red Ale is a Scottish light beer. About 5.2% of the liquid is alcohol. A special Ale yeast strain and purified water are used to create this beer, which is made from carefully chosen malts and has a hop aroma.
With a golden color, crisp flavors of whole-wheat malt, and specially chosen, aromatic malts, Victoria Weiss is the top fruit-fermented draft beer and the emblematic Bavarian beer. light taste of hops, made with pure brewing water, a special line of yeast created just for this beer. 5.2-4.2% alcohol content.
* It was once said that each beer has a unique history depending on the brewmaster’s intentions and “style.” Then what is the story of these four beers?
Lager beer is produced by numerous breweries located all over Europe, including those in Germany’s Bavaria and Bohemia, Belgium, England, Scotland, Ireland, and the Baltic States. We opt for German beers from the Bavarian region. This beer is a vibrant yellow color and smells of hops.
This is a very special beer in the Dark Lager line, brewed with a variety of roasted and smoked malts and originating primarily in the south of Germany in Franconia and Bohemia. The combination of malt and roasted malt gives this beer its dark color and intense malt flavor.
With a worldwide favorite wheat beer we named Weiss, this is a top-fermented fruit-flavored beer. This beer is brewed by brewers in Southern Bavaria with a slight hop flavor to increase its usability in the summer months.
We suggest a light, fruity Scottish ale for those who like ale. For the flavor of this beer, Scottish brewers prefer to use homemade malts and carefully chosen bitter hops.
Cozy and luxurious atmosphere at Victoria Craft Beer
* Many people are curious as to what distinguishes these four beers from the other beers available in Hue City that they want to learn about and use.
As I previously stated, what sets us apart is how we choose premium malts, employ our yeasts, and choose hops from the renowned hop-growing regions of Bavaria and Bohemia. Finally, we pay close attention to the water used in the brewing of beer. We combine the knowledge of brewing methods from an established brewery with these carefully chosen raw materials to apply them to the procedures from fermentation to finished products. It is essential to produce beer of superior quality.
* The Germans’ competitive spirit serves as an inspiration for Victoria Craft Beer. Do you believe the restaurant’s beers made with that spirit will be popular in Hue?
These 4 beers will undoubtedly improve the Hue and surrounding areas’ beer market. As is well known, Hue residents enjoy a lot of beer consumption, and the beverage has been around for a while. The world’s oldest pure food law, the “Reinheitsgebot,” which dates back to 1516, will now be used to create new beers with new flavors in Hue (Bavarian Purity Act 1516).
* It seems that you and your associates not only intend to introduce new beers to Hue market but also an accompanying culture, isn’t that right, Mr. Alex?
We intend to introduce Hu beer products with various compositions and combinations into the beer market. We also wanted to show everyone how we can have fun together with food and music in one kitchen.
* Mr. Alex, what message would you like to convey to diners in Hue specifically and to Vietnamese people in general?
All Hue residents and residents of the surrounding areas are cordially invited to visit our beer restaurant and partake in the flavors of beer that best suit their preferences in our beer garden.
* I appreciate Alexander Haf, the brewer, taking the time for this informative conversation. I hope your upcoming journey with Victoria Craft Beer restaurant is enjoyable.