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“Most people come to Vienna for love. I came for the love of beer!”
Brian Patton had never been to Vienna when he decided to open an Irish pub there. Having lived in Bavaria and travelled and worked around the world, via studying to be a management consultant and then completely changing career paths, he arrived in Vienna in 1996 and his first pub, Charlie P’s, opened in 1997.
Now, along with Charlie P's and the seasonal burger joint, It’s All About the Meat, Baby, there's The Brickmakers, which opened in 2015. The pub is on Zieglergasse (ziegler means ‘brick’) in Vienna’s Seventh District (Neubau), a cool area that attracts students, intellectuals and creatives. And this pub is changing Vienna’s beer drinking in the best ways.
“I’m intensely passionate about moving someone from one beer experience to something else,” Brian says. He’s a beer sommelier, has a diploma in wine and makes his own wine, he holds beer events in which he’s “trying to build a beer community here in Vienna,” and runs The Culinary Love Band, a kind of conceptual food and drink super group with other Austrian entrepreneurs. He’s very dedicated to great beer. He’s even started brewing his own beer.
For Brian, Pilsner Urquell is a perfect companion and complement to craft beer. “People come in here and they have one or two craft beers then maybe a couple of Pilsners. Or the opposite. Having 30 or so craft beers on tap is intimidating but I like to think I’m encouraging exploration.”
The Brickmakers has Tankovna Pilsner Urquell, as does It’s All About the Meat, Baby. “It’s a really distinctive beer – it has a personality and the tanks are a great way of communicating ‘this is quality.’ The tanks have a huge impact on quality.”
“That tanker drives 325km from Plzen to here. I know that and that means something to me,” says Brian. “We’re in Vienna. Our neighbour is Czech.”
“I will never, ever sell anything that I don’t believe in. I find lager fascinating. Lager is an accessible flavour and then you can give it character. Those Saaz hops are unique. I’m really proud to sell Pilsner Urquell.”
Brian’s love of beer took him to Vienna. It’s kept him there and he’s at the forefront of a thriving community, one which is knowledgeable, passionate and dedicated to the best quality beers.
By the way, did you know that after Prague, Vienna was the first city that Pilsner Urquell was exported to, with the first beers reaching there in 1852?
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