Birra da Strada. The Italian way to say Street Beer or, maybe, a Beer from the Street. That's the claim you can see everywhere when you have a Vetra in your hands, or when you are stepping foot in a brewery that shows as much street culture as tanks and fermenters.
"Birra da Strada is part of our background" – this is Stefano talking, the brewmaster of this dreamy brewery – "when we were younger we were used to seat in a park around a few tasty and craft beers, and after talking and drinking for a while anybody of us was moving to our next creative activity: painting on trains, producing beats, skating or BMXing, graffiti spraying, and anything else that the street culture was busy with at that time".
I listen to Stefano's words, and I visualize also what I saw in the brewery: posters of support to Vans parties, collab beers with bike companies, support to graffiti crews, and special cans for the iconic paint spray brand Loop.
Vetra Loop – A bit of music into a can of Session IPA
Loop is also the name of the beers we are canning today: "I have been traveling the world to learn the art of brewing and to get any contamination from all over the world" – still Stefano talking – "but the main characteristic I want to achieve with Vetra Beers is the high drinkability. We love to explore, find new flavors, and experiment with ingredients, but the goal we always have in mind is a beer you will never have enough of". And this is exactly the case of Loop: fresh session IPA, quite light but "something you can drink for the whole summer" – to use Stefano's words.
You can have the feeling of the beers and the communications that are coming out from Vetra Brewery are social based, beers created with a community to be enjoyed within a community.
Wondercraft and the One-Shot Beers
Community always in focus. I realize that when I am at the brewery during canning day: my eyes drop on a colorful and I can't stop asking around about it. This is part of the Wondercraft '23 project. At Vetra they decided to bring together a few friends breweries and experiment with a one-shot brew, just to explore the boundaries of taste and the pleasure of getting together.
I can see three beers on the project, for the moment:
- Anche Meno: DDH Hazy IPA in collab with the Irish breweries The White Hag Brewing Co. and MØM Brewers
- Kinki: DDH Hazy Session IPA with 90 BPM, Microbrasserie Dijonnaise.
- Tropicalia: Fruited Sour in combination with Garden Brewery from Croatia.
But, wait a second: Loop, Kinki, Anche Meno, Tropicalia. All these beer names remind me of something musical.
"Of course Stefano" – it is Stefano, the brewer Stefano – "every beer of ours is dedicated to a certain music, or at least inspired by something related to it".
Funk Etno-beat from the east side of Rome
"Take this last collab beer, for example" – Stefano picks up a can of Tropicalia – "for the drop of this fruity sour we decided to go and discover a sound that can be comparable with the freshness of the beer. So we found these vibes that are rocking the eastern streets of Rome cracking a very peculiar sound: a Funk-Etno-Beat almost unknown in Italy but hyper-appreciated in the trendy and underground clubs of Berlin and the US".
"Yep, this music is just wow, and for the launch of Tropicalia we called a DJ and we played his music in a few clubs in Rome while having a blast".
And the next beer
Collabs, core, seasonal, awesome brews. I could continue talking with Stefano for a couple of more hours, but I ask him a question that sounds like a see ya: "What's your favorite?"
"A cheesy way to answer would be the next one" – his answer – "but I actually love the Vetra Pils, who made us win a few international awards. But I'm also looking forward to the day I will brew an English-style beer, maybe a bitter, an Italian Bitter".
I go out from the brewery by having the feeling that at Vetra they really speak my same language, not only because they are Italian like I am, but also because backgrounds, passions, (street)-style, beer taste, and attitudes are quite similar to mine. Like when I am heading to the door and I see Stefano heading to his vehicle carrying a few boxes and saying "I love when I bring my work home".
Well, buddy, you should be proud of doing it!
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