Connect the love of beer with the love of your city. Arie Mesker from Oudewater succeeded, in 2019 he even set up a city brewery for it. “We feel ourselves. Just as easy, here in the kitchen of our house.”
It was in June 2018 when Arie drank a beer with his former partner Frans at a birthday party.
“While we were enjoying that beer, the idea of brewing our own beer arose. Just for fun, as a joke. To which Frans said: “Did you know that Oudewater used to have quite a few breweries?” Maybe it would be nice to give those breweries a prominent role in our special beer!’ No sooner said than done.”
17th century recipe
My first question was, ‘Okay, should we tinker with a 300-gallon tank, or should we be serious? Frans had the original 17th century recipe from ‘t Swaert in his possession, and we agreed that we should go big with it. Anyway, where are we going to brew? Because just buying a brewing installation doesn’t work. Those investments are so big that it’s actually not fun anymore.
‘With the original recipe from the seventeenth century by ‘t Swaert as a starting point, we had to tackle it big’
Frans ended up doing other things and handed the glass to my partner Virginie. Virginie comes from the beautiful Oirschot, from the hospitality industry and she even had her own pub. The amazing thing is that she knows the owner of Brouwerij De Oirsprong, known for the De Kroon beer. We then got in touch with the brewer there with the question: can you brew 4000 liters for us? You see, we finally got ‘t Swaert brewed here, and yes, Stadsbrouwerij Oudewater was a fact.”
Old Dutch water line
“A serious beer also needs a serious label design. It certainly wasn’t supposed to be a frog job either. One day I bump into Jeroen Harzing in our beautiful city, he also has a soft spot for Oudewater. Jeroen also has an advertising agency in Oudewaters and, like me, has a warm heart for the town. He said, ‘Wow, we’re going to design something beautiful for you, because we’re going to set up Stadsbrouwerij Oudewater right away. Then suddenly there was a brand, a really serious brand! And guess what, it immediately went down well.”
The mayor has even officially promoted the beer. “It was a great moment in our three-year-old brewery history. After ‘t Swaert, we decided to brew another beer, a bock beer: De Gekroonde Dissel. Next came ‘t Witte Hert, a wheat beer, and De Poort as a triple. Our last beer has become Old Dutch Water Line The first four are an ode to four breweries that were once active here in Oudewater and the last is an ode to Old Dutch Waterline which has been around for 350 years this year Oudewater is part of it as a fortress. This anniversary beer comes from Jeroen’s genius and is promoted by Stichting De Waterlinie. In addition, there are quite a few companies that now buy our beer.”
“It’s nice to mention that we also honor the stork, as you can see on the logo. The stork is still an important bird for our city. The nest site has been the same for almost 450 years; the old town hall in the center of Oudewater. The stork returns for four and a half centuries to this nest in Oudewater. With that in mind, Stadsbrouwerij Oudewater brews beer that you stay for and come back for, just like the beautiful storks. Look, we’re not getting rich from our brewery. Of course we earn something from it, but that was and is not our goal. Promoting Oudewater is, for fun and hobby, that’s how we’re both in it. The nice thing is that the network of sales points is constantly expanding, and we would like to keep it that way. Of course, I still have my job on the side, and Virginie also has her work, which takes a lot of time, so it’s going great like this.’
They feel themselves. “Just as easy, here in the kitchen of our house. It’s all quite realistic. Fortunately, we have a large warehouse in Oirschot. There is also some storage here, but we can hardly fill the whole living room with beer. Although it might also have something, haha.”
During office hours
“At Autobedrijf M. De Koning with branches in Capelle, Rotterdam and Krimpen am
I am team leader Aftersales for the Krimpen aan de IJssel department. We are Volkswagen
and Volkswagen commercial vehicle dealer as well as Cupra, Seat and Skoda
Service dealer. We also have a large used car department,
a claims department and an AVIA gas station.”
Visit www.bierwaarjevoorblijft.nl for more information on the various Oudewaterse beers.