Our biker lives

Beer & Cycling

4 Comments 31 May 2012

Canadians, Finns and Belgians get along for many reasons, but especially for the amber nectar of gods. Beer has been a part of cycling as long as, well, since bikes been along. Beer used to be the replacement for water after all and it was also the main energy drink on long bike treks.

Even the Rules state in Rule #47 that:

Rule #47

// Drink Tripels, don’t ride triples.

Cycling and beer are so intertwined we may never understand the full relationship. Beer is a recovery drink, an elixir for post-ride trash talking and a just plain excellent thing to pour down the neck. We train to drink so don’t fool around. Drink quality beer from real breweries. If it is brewed with rice instead of malted barley or requires a lime, you are off the path. Know your bittering units like you know your gear length. Life is short, don’t waste it on piss beer.

One of our favorites is the Old Empire IPA, seen here with sausage.

The Chimay Grande Reserve is one of the best beers in the world, readily available in many places. It is quite strong though, but it builds character.

But when it comes to what is the best beer in the world, there’s only one option. The Westvleteren 12. You’ll probably never have an opportunity to taste it, but if you do, take it! You can only get this by going to the Abbey in Belgium and picking it up. Sure, you must be Belgian and stuff, but it costs like 3 euros a bottle. Which is ridiculously cheap. If you buy it in a bar, however, be prepared to pay about 50 euros per bottle.

Still, there are so many great and good beers in the world, readily waiting for our taste buds. Here seen Ridgeway IPA, Belhaven’s Twisted Thistle, Marston’s Old Empire and Ayingers Hefe-Weisse (that’s the tall boy in the back).

If you have beer we should taste, what would it be? What do you recommend?

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Markus is a bike commuter gadget freak who is learning the ropes of the bike world, you can find him all around the web - but you can start with his twitter at @banton.

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  • Jaakko
  • BA has good advice on US beers, someone should bring them to the Old continent sometimes :)

  • While in the states, I found hundreds of really good beers. The homebrewing and microbrewery scene there is amazing. My favourites were Founder’s Backcountry Bastard, and Goose Island Bourbon County Stout. Canada’s Unibrou make the excellent Belgian style Fin du Monde too. But frankly the list of good beer is so long it’s hard to pick the best. However… by far the best import was Cuvee de Jacobins Rouge, a blended sour red. Absolutely heaven.

    Here in Finland the microbrewer scene is jsut getting started, so the next few years will be interested. I learned to brew my own been in the US, and if all goes well I’ll be able to start doing that again soon.

    As or what’s available in the local supermarkets and Alko (in Rovaniemi), I’ve become very fond of Thwaites Wainwright which is available pretty much everywhere.  It’s a pity they don’t sell anything by Fantome here anymore (at least up north), but Alko has a nice selection in general. 

  • Velocodger

     Here in Sacramento I found Maredsous and Abt 12 on tap, both great Belgians. We just finished “Beer Week”. There are too many great local microbrews to list. If I had some room in my luggage I would bring some over this Summer. Maybe next year! Hey, if you can make it down, there’s
    this in a couple of weeks…I will be there. Cheers! http://www.generationmountainbike.com/

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Coming Thru (or Coming Through - as that URL was taken) is a daily updated bike magazine - a collection of writings and links that relate to biking in its every form. The idea started from when Maarten met Markus decided to finally start collecting the things we like about bikes and talk about our everyday adventures in dodging moving objects at high speeds.The site is run by a collage of cyclists, most notably by Canadian Johanna MacDonald, Belgian Maarten Patteeuw and Finnish Markus Sandelin.

It all started in the spring of 2010, after a record breaking snowy winter when Markus bought a house 25 kilometers from the office and decided to handle the commuting with a bicycle. It turned out the bike wasn’t up to standards for that kind of stress and the first weeks were more tragicomic than glorious. Thus the idea began to brew to actually document this journey.

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