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Q: What do you get when you cross an 80s pop legend with an A-list craft beer celebrity?
A: Rick Astley's Northern Hop, a 4.7% red lager with a touch of ginger!
This coming together of two seemingly disparate minds has roots far deeper than Astley's resurrected cult Rickrolling status. As a youngster Mikkel Borg Bjergsø was a huge Rick Astley fan, with posters of Rick on his bedroom wall and cassettes of his hits on repeat in the Walkman. Fast forward 30 years, and a connection via Astley's Danish wife had the pair meeting in Belgium's De Proef brewery and concocting the beer you see before you.
Easy drinking, thirst quenching and with a gentle gingery finish, Astley's Northern Hop is equally suited to soothing tired vocal chords or sipping on a spring afternoon.
You can watch a short film documenting Mikkel and Rick's collaboration here.
To learn more about De Proef brewery where the collaboration took place, click here.
Like all good breweries, there’s an excellent story behind Mikkeller. In 2006 Mikkel Borg Bjergsø was a maths and physics teacher with a growing passion for beer. Inspired by foreign brews, he decided to create something even better himself (for less money!), and so the brewing experiments began. When his home-brew won a blind taste test against Brøckhouse IPA he knew he was onto something, and started entering homebrew competitions - which he invariably won. Combining science with passion, Mikkel began brewing at Danish microbrewery Ørbæk and distributing from a friend’s beer shop.
This in itself was pretty good, but the big breakthrough came when Mikkel added french press coffee to an oatmeal stout. The resulting Beer Geek Breakfast was quickly voted the #1 stout on Ratebeer and the rest, as they say, is history. Although he’s never owned his own brewery, Mikkel constantly invents, creates and collaborates with some of the world’s best breweries to produce truly stunning beers. He’s achieved almost cult-like status and is certainly one of our favourite brewers. If you’re looking for passion, honesty and seriously tasty beer, you’ve come to the right place.