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Booze From Bee Larvae? Scandinavian Foodies Turn to Beer

on 07/05/13 at 10:00 am

Booze News
Nordic Food Lab

Nordic Food Lab

The Scandinavian food revolution, driven by famed Copenhagen restaurant Noma and its use of unconventional foraged ingredients, is set to make its way to your beer glass.

Danish brewer Carlsberg has a swanky new ally in the fight to capture the attention of well-heeled drinkers who are shifting away from beer for a variety of reasons, including health concerns.

Carlsberg – a multinational giant known for a stable of 500 brands with myriad flavors – is teaming with Copenhagen’s Nordic Food Lab, a house-boat based think tank for foodies that is affiliated with the ultra-chic Noma restaurant. Starting June 1, the duo will work to create a new round of specialty beers for the high-brow Jacobsen microbrew brand.

Noma consistently ranks at or near the top in global restaurant rankings and is renowned for its interpretation of Nordic cuisine. The partnership is to start on June, 1st, and the aim is to develop at least three types of beer together.

Noma’s Nordic Food Lab is experimenting with local ingredients from the Nordic region. The aim is to find herbs or other natural products that so far are not used widely in food, but can add a particular taste. Bee larvae, woodruff and cucumber in pulverized form are a few of the materials Nordic Food Lab has on the radar.

“I could, for example, imagine a Baltic Porter produced with seaweed,” said Morten Ibsen, Jacobsen’s master brewer. Michael Bom Frøst, director of the Nordic Food Lab, said the partners “will look into wild nature for finding ingredients that taste well and help us creating the beer that will be sought after for accompanying a meal.”

The goal is to more aggressively insert beer into the fine dining experience at a time when an increasing amount of people are shifting to wine or reducing alcohol intake for health reasons. The shift is particularly acute in Western Europe.