A big thanks goes out to Anouk Willemin of La Côte for her 26 October aticle on Dive Bär

Dive Bär: a new craft brewery gets brewing in Gland

David Shotlander and Jonathon Klassen are brewing their Dive Bär beer in a former Lindt chocolate factory warehouse in Gland.

It’s just after 7 a.m. when Jonathon Klassen arrives in his space to start brewing beer, before being joined by his friend David Shotlander. For the past two months, they’ve been working out of Lindt’s first factory in Gland, which has long since been converted into a metal shop. Because of the recent move, everything is still a bit of a mess. Three large brew kettles glisten on one side of the space. This is where the first steps of the “Dive Bär” brew day take place. 

On this rainy autumn morning, the temperature rises fairly quickly in this old building where barley malt is added to water heated to 67 degrees, after having been previously crushed with a mill. This first step extracts the starch from the malts, which will then transform into sugar once mixed with water and heated in the kettle. 

Today, the two friends and neighbours have decided to make a high-gravity ale similar to a Guinness, made from a maximum of organic ingredients. They use dark malted and roasted barley for this purpose. This roasted grain gives the room a toasty smell. “We’ll then naturally let the sweetened water drain from the malts. The resulting nectar, called wort, is transferred to the boil kettle to boil for an hour. That’s when we’ll add a flower called hops, which will give the beer its bitterness,” Jonathon explains, clearly passionate about his work. When brewing, you can’t afford to lose focus because your timing has to be very precise and the work is complex. “You have to constantly think about the next step, clean the equipment, prepare the kettles, disinfect,” continues his friend.

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