Each year in Amsterdam, late October brings a three-day weekend that celebrates the long-standing practice of bokbier brewing in the Netherlands. It’s the PINT Bokbier Festival and the non-profit group that hosts the event organized it with the intent of helping to spread knowledge about this Dutch tradition of beer.
The Bokbier Festival was first put together in 1978, starting out very small and only needing a single café to host the entire event. Since then, it has grown and now requires a significantly larger space to house the more than ten thousand people that show up annually.
While there are many brands of beer present at the festival, the main variety is, of course, the titular bokbier. Bokbiers are a Dutch spin on the bock recipe that creates a darker and stronger version of this brew. It is one of the most widely brewed beers in the country and it’s no wonder a festival sprouted up in its honor.
Around 50 different types of bokbier are on tap at the festival, most of them brewed locally. Some exceptional brews from Belgium and Germany also make their way into the line-up. And along with the drink is live music every day of the festival, consisting primarily of folk, rock and Oktoberfest-like performances.
For beer connoisseurs, PINT Bokbier Festival is a great way to experience this Dutch brewing tradition in all its glory. Spend a few days hanging out with the locals, taste many of the best bokbiers in the country and come away with a new appreciation for this tasty brew.