Thursday, August 23, 2007
Kozel: the Czechs' Leading Export Beer
You can walk the streets of Prague for blocks and then kilometers before finding a pub that sells Kozel. It is a brand that is well known in the Czech Republic, but it's simply not that popular with Czech beer drinkers. That said, Kozel is the Czech Republic's leading export beer, selling more beer abroad that Staropramen, Budweiser Budvar, or even Pilsner Urquell. Finland and the United Kingdom are at the top of the export list. Which I guess accounts for all those English-language web entries proclaiming Kozel as the the greatest Czech beer.
For the record, the name of the brewery is Velkopopovický Kozel and it was opened in 1874. It is located in the city of Velké Popovice, which is located about 20 miles southeast of Prague. Kozel translates into English as a male goat or "billy goat." The brewery was purchased by Pilsner Urquell in 1999, which was later purchased by SABMiller.