Something special is brewing in Croatia’s eastern Požega-Slavonia County. There are some excellent craft beers coming out of Pakrac and Pleternica that go perfectly with local delicacies like kulen, kulenova seka, Slavonian sausages, čvarke…
Barley malt, hops, water and yeast are all that is needed for a great beer. Although it sounds simple, each manufacturer has its own secret recipe that makes a difference. You will discover this if you visit Slavonica in Pakrac and Franz in Pleternica, two great craft breweries in Golden Slavonia. More and more beer lovers enjoy their products, so when you travel to this part of Croatia, it is worth a visit.
Drink like a Count
Marko Barčan brewed his first beer, an amber ale, four years ago in a 50-litre pot and gave it to his father for his birthday. Everything else is history.
This beer was named the ‘Grof’, which means Count, Grof was soon given a Countess, a pleasant American pale ale called ‘Grofica’, and the noble story of superior taste was rounded off by the dominant ‘Carica’ (Empress), an intriguing Indian pale ale.
It did not take long to come up with the the names for the first two beers. They were inspired by the Janković family, which marked the rich history of Lipik and Pakrac, so the ‘Carica’ (Empress), named after Maria Theresa, continued in the same style.
“Live freely, drink like a Count!” Is the slogan of this small family brewery. Today, Slavonica is an integral part of the Pakrac itinerary, a place you must visit when you are in the town at the foot of the Psunj mountain.
In search of freedom
“What do you want from what you consume? We want just such a beer, it is important to us what we drink and that is why we embarked on this interesting journey,” say brothers Marijan and Zvonimir Pandžić.
Their craft beer with a pleasant smell, mild bitterness and exceptional drinkability first came on the market as a blond ale and brown ale, and their prototype Pandžići was cooked in their mother’s garage. A good start to a great story.
The name Franz came of its own accord, it is memorable, at the root hides the word free, and are we not all in search of freedom? Along with the light and dark variant, this small brewery in Pleternica today brews golden ale Jozef and the powerful winter beer Krampusaner, just like it is created for this time of year.
In cafes in the Požega-Slavonia County, you can also taste their well-received lager, with the symbolic name Bećar.
In Požega-Slavonia County, a famous wine destination where you will be offered world-class Graševina, a real small craft revolution is happening. And not just beer. Craft gin, craft cheeses, and even craft bread are cooking and a great invitation to visit this winter.