Today’s Beer of the World, Carlsberg, comes from the Carlsberg Group out of Denmark. This beer is served pretty much everywhere at the Norway Pavillion in Epcot, which is a little odd, as this is not actually a Norwegian beer. Interestingly, Ringnes beer, which used to be served at the Norway Pavillion, and was actually a Norwegian beer, was acquired by Carlsberg Group in 2004. Sometime after that they stopped selling Ringnes at Norway, and started selling Carlsberg. While fans of Ringnes at the Norway Pavillion were disappointed, I don’t think they could match the disappointment of Christian Ringnes, a descendant of the founders of the beer, as per this quote on Wikipedia:
Christian Ringnes, a descendant of the founders told daily business newspaper Dagens Næringsliv that “a country without a leading beer brand is like a man without potency”, and called the sale a national catastrophe.
You can find a lot of information about Carlsberg beer on the Carlsberg Group website. I would say this is one of the most media heavy and comprehensive beer sites I’ve come across. If you’re interested in their history, brewing process, and commercials, you could probably spend at least a half hour on the thing. If that’s not enough for you, they have an entirely separate corporate website which has even more information.
A German pilsener style beer, Carlsberg has an ABV of 5.0%. Both the folks at Beer Advocate and their readers rate this beer as Average, giving it scores of 73 and 70, respectively. Between Carlsberg and Ringnes, I can’t really say I was a fan of either one. They are o.k., but just o.k. I will admit that it’s been a long while since I’ve had a Ringnes though, certainly not since they pulled it from the Norway Pavillion, so I’m operating on memory here. But it doesn’t matter since they no longer serve it. Therefore, my suggestion for drinking around the world is that you should skip the beer and just go for the Linie Aquavit shot. It’s definitely different, but at least it’s Norwegian.