“It’s a hot beer and it’s really tasty” – my travel friend.
When I first heard about “hot beer”, I was somewhat surprised. The reason being that I have always been a guy who likes a good old cold beer. On my travels around the world, I drank cold beer in as many countries as I could – I simply love trying the local drinks everywhere I go.
In England (for example) I also enjoyed many local ales, but these are served at room temperature, or cold and so the idea of “warm beer” or “hot beer” both disgusted me and shocked me. In fact, it simply didn’t interest me – I might even have thought it was a joke, especially on my first two visits to Poland. Both of which are covered in the first volume of my book, Backpacking Centurion, which was released in 2020.
While I first passed through the city of Poznań by train in March 2005 (on the party train from Berlin to Warszawa), on that trip we didn’t alight from the train carriage. We simply passed through Poznań. Fast forward ridiculously 10 years from that first trip, and I was finally in Poznań. This time, in December 2015, I was visiting my travel friend and touring the sights. The suggestion came up to finally try this Polish “hot beer” in Poznań…so we did!
I met my travel friends by the Zamek (Castle) in Poznań (Pozzie) and we headed through the beautiful Stare Miasto on a cold, misty and snowy night in this epic Polish city. I have actually written about Hot Beer before, here are the links –
What exactly is Polish “Hot Beer”?
It is known as grzane piwo, or grzaniec and is basically a winter tipple made from boiling beer and adding certain flavours and spices to it. It is beer that is has been mulled and is always served hot – not cold, not warm. But there is more to Grzaniec than just the temperature of it – it is tangy and has a great taste! This is because the beer is frothing with added spices and extra ingredients to give it a unique zesty flavour. We headed to Basilium Bar in Poznan to try it, it was my first time to try Grazniec…
However please also note that the name Grzaniec can also mean hot wine / mulled wine, so it can confuse. You can just ask for Grzane Piwo. And it comes in different flavours.
I was here with two travel friends, Inga and Dolina and they had tried the Grzaniec before. Me, I hadn’t. It was time to test this Grzaniec / Grzane Piwo (Polish Hot Beer) in Poznań…ironically in the same bar, Basilium, they had Belfast Beer!
It was a cold night outside but inside very warm. We found a cosy table in the corner to sample this liquid and chat the night away…
Did I like Grzaniec?
Yes, I loved it! I loved it so much that is has now become a regular tipple for me, after I moved to Poland in 2016!
The Grzaniec we had was with gingerbread, cinnamon, spice and orange. There is also a raspberry variety.
I include a few more photos of my Grzaniec debut! As the Polish say, Na Zdrowie! Slainte! Cheers!
Below is a rather blurred video of us trying grzaniec / grzane piwo in Basilium Bar in Poznań in December 2015.
Basilium Beerspot, Woźna 21, 61-776 Poznań, Poland.