Svalbard's Glacier Beer Debuts Next Week

The Arctic island of Svalbard is located about halfway between Norway and the North Pole, and it is about to become home to the world's "most northerly brewed beer" now that authorities have repealed a brewing ban that had been in place for 80 years.

According to The Local, Svalbard banned brewing in 1928 because the authorities did not want local coal miners getting drunk and rambunctious in the town. That brewing ban was just removed last year, and now master brewer Andreas Hegermann Riis has developed two local beers at the Svalbard Brewery, which is officially the world's northernmost brewery. Riis says he has produced an IPA and a wheat beer, both called Spitsbergen, and together he has about 8,000 liters ready to be packaged this weekend. Both will be put into cans so tourists can safely take them out on excursions.

The beer is made with water from the local glacier, which Riis says he hopes will give the beer a unique, hyper-local flavor. After the IPA and the wheat beer, Riis says he's looking forward to making a stout, a pilsner, and more.

"Anything in time we will experiment with, just like a proper craft beer brewery should do," he said.

The beers will be introduced next Friday at the Coal Miner's Cabin in Svalbard.