Beer (pivo) in Czech Republic is like bread. From facts about Czech beer, it surprised me that even if you drink at work or at lunch break most of the supervisors will have no problem with that. You can drink on the streets, parks and it’s basically all about beer! Not to mention, that beer is super cheap! Can we talk about the beer paradise? This beer culture is surely unique. Let’s discover more about it, and you will want to visit Czechia immediately!
7 facts about Czech beer
I spent a year discovering Czech breweries which are numerous. It was an amazing way when I kept discovering new places to go for a beer in Prague and around the country, when I traveled. Czech beer in my opinion is the best in the world. You can find plenty of kinds, degrees, colors and flavors! Moreover, you will never finish discovering, because there are still new micro-breweries coming up. It’s crazy!
What helped me to find them? I can advise downloading mobile app called Pivovary which will show you all the big and small breweries on the map of the country. It’s in English and Czech. Very useful when you travel in Czechia.
1. Czech beer is categorized in “degrees”
First things first, let’s not get confused with the degrees. A must know fact about Czech beer is: these are not percentages of alcohol! Seeing beer with 10º or 12º don’t get confused, this in not amount of alcohol. I prepared a separate article about explaining kinds of Czech beer and guide on how to read the alcohol degrees and not get drunk in Czech Republic.
2. Czech beer etiquette
Coming to Czech Republic, you must know how to say Cheers! Na zdraví – means “to your health” and saying those words you must always keep eye contact with each person, otherwise it’s very offensive! Lastly, when ordering beer at the bar, use your thumb to represent “1” beer, your thumb together with a forefinger for “2,” and so forth.
3. The most rude customer service ever!
Unusual for Czech Republic is service, specially waiters in the pubs, because they are sometimes very rude. Of course, I am not talking about strictly touristic places, but real Czech experience. If you are used to polite customer service, you can get very disappointed. In other words when a waiter doesn’t want to serve you, never smiles and look at you like you at least want him to carry a wardrobe for you on the third floor. And after all he expects you to tip!
This happened to me also in the restaurants, when we almost beg the waiter to take an order. Another time in the tobacco shop when the guy didn’t want to serve us at all, pretending that doesn’t see us (the shop had like 3 square meters). A typical situation is when the a waiter comes totally bored and without smile. Then he takes your order like you are the last customer ordering while they want to close the bar. Sometimes you can feel guilty ordering when you see how big effort for a waiter is to take an order.
4. Next one? You better know before you finish first!
When you are about to finish your glass, expect a waiter to come bringing you next one, sometimes without even asking. Yeah, if you read the previous fact about Czech beer, you see that it’s hard to order but once you start drinking it’s even more difficult to stop. Don’t worry, though, Czech beer is not as strong as Belgium beers and foremost, they are the best quality ever!
In some traditional places you will get a small bill on your table where waiter will mark each beer you are ordering. After all, it is easy when it comes to paying. Lastly, you are expected to tip in Czech Republic!
5. Beer is cheaper than water!
Satisfying is the price of Czech beer. Beer in the restaurants is cheaper than water or any other beverage. For a good draft beer, you can pay from 1 to 2 € for 0,5 l. In the supermarket you can get a bottle for less than 1 € but beer from the bottle is considered much worse. For Czech people good beer comes straight from the tap! They rarely take bottles or cans. Draft beer also should have pipes cleaned every day (of course it’s rare). This fact makes the quality higher and taste better.
6. Small beer is not a good choice!
Size of the beer is very important as well. In most of the places waiters won’t even ask if you want big or small they will just bring you 0,5 l. because this is a standard. In some places (very traditional) they won’t even ask you if you want beer, they will just bring it. If the place is famous for a certain kind of Czech beer and people go there just to drink it, no need to make an order, right?
7. The biggest beer consumption in the world
At last, Czech Republic is truly the country of beer, with the biggest beer consumption per capita. Statistics say that one Czech adult person drinks average 150 liters of beer per year!
Do you like local crafts?
As fan of responsible traveling and sustainability, I like to support local producers, bee-keepers and appreciate regional traditions around the world. When traveling I am trying to buy products from local farmers and manufacturers. I love locally crafted beers, cognac or wines. Buying locally support the region economy, decreases CO2 emission as the products didn’t travel far. Therefore, I highly encourage you to always buy locally!
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