A large percentage of craft beers produced in South America are made with ingredients imported from the United States or Europe. However, in Chile “Cervecería Kunstmann” (Kunstmann Brewery) adapted an area in its environs to plant its own hops, a great challenge in the middle of a cold and rainy climate at the beginning of Chilean Patagonia.
The cares with which “Patio del Lúpulo Kunstmann” (Kunstmann Hops Yard) were made, opened at the end of 2015, allowed to harvest – as every year between February and March – about 200 kilos of the traditional component and cook an experimental beer, which has been a success among beer fans.
Thanks to this harvest, chileans gave life to their Kunstmann Fresh Hop specialty, in which they used the Wet Hopping method for their elaboration. Thus, they obtained a beer of 5.5º of alcohol and 30 IBU, very differentiated and attractive to consume, made with fresh hops, barley malt blonde and Munich, yeast Ale and, of course, Valdivian soft water, unique in the world.
The Fresh Hop, as described by its master brewer specialist, Lutz Herdtle, “is a blonde beer, with herbal and citrus aromas brought from fresh hops. In mouth, it has a sweet taste, coming from the malts that is perfectly balanced with the bitterness of the flowers and a dry finish. As for pairing, it goes very well with grilled meats and vegetables, as well as burgers and medium intensity cheeses.”
Another of the attributes that make this Chilean craft beer special is the water. “The one we use for brewing is extracted from two 40-meter wells. It is used as it is taken from the underground layers and has a special feature: it is one of the few soft water cords (which does not contain minerals) in the world”, explains Armin Kunstmann, founder of the brewery.
Kuntsmann Brewery Story
Kunstmann has over 25 years of experience in the world of Craft Beer. Its beer heritage comes from the German roots of its creators, still in charge of the company, Armin Kunstmann and Patricia Ramos, who dreamed one day of give back to the city of Valdivia, in Chile, the passion to make beer, after the most powerful earthquake recorded in the history of humanity in 1960 finished with emblematic producers in the area.
It was a casual encounter that gave Armin the impulse to undertake and innovate. The book “The pleasure of making beer at home” by Charlie Papazian, led him to make his first cooking in the kitchen of his home, where his little children helped him with the washing and covered of the bottles. Over time they were perfecting until they found the first specialty of the family: Kunstmann Lager.
Due to the success of this first variety, they were able to install a plant in the Torobayo area. Currently, Kunstmann Brewery leads the craft beer market in Chile with 16 different specialties; among them its renowned Torobayo, Lager, Bock, Honey, Gran Torobayo, in addition to other styles, all elaborated only in their origin.
Making creative beers, with character and a deep sense of quality, the link with the Valdivian community and giving consumers a whole beer experience, are the fundamental pillars of Kunstmann.
Michael Deichstetter says
A large percentage of breweries in S.America use imported hops because they are better. Local varieties in Argentina and Chile leave much to be desired. That may change with time now that the industry is growing so quickly.