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Norway has become a great place for beer lovers. Ekspedisjonen Skjenkestove in Lofthus, Indre Hardanger, offers beer, cider, and a lot of fun. Photo: Helge Skodvin
Norway has become a great place for beer lovers. Ekspedisjonen Skjenkestove in Lofthus, Indre Hardanger, offers beer, cider, and a lot of fun. Photo: Helge Skodvin

Food & Drink

The best places to enjoy a beer in Norway

Interest in beer and brewing has exploded recently, with pubs competing not only on the breadth of their selection, but also on who has the most special brews.

Per Øyvind Arnesenleder.The big breweries have been facing competition from several new breweries for a long time now, with figures from the Norwegian Brewery and Beverage Association suggesting there are around 80 breweries in Norway. Good news for all those who love malt and hops.

There are more opportunities than ever to try out new beers. Scandinaviantraveler.com asked beer connoisseur and home brewer Per Øyvind Arnesen to pick out a handful of the best places to enjoy a beer in the Norwegian summer. Arnesen heads the judging committee of the home brewers’ association Norbrygg and is the deputy chair of Norske Ølvenners Landsforbund (the Norwegian Association of Beer-lovers). He also blogs about beer on Ølportalen and Ølhund.no.

Here are beer connoisseur Arnesen’s favorites:

Den gode nabo, Trondheim

In an old building in the Bakklandet district of Trondheim is the popular Den gode nabo, which offers a good selection of beers. One of the more special beers you can try at this inviting place is Stjørdalsøl, a beer that uses heavily smoked malts.

Den gode nabo

Øvre Bakklandet 66, Trondheim

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Trondheim microbrewery

Opened in 1998, this is the second-oldest microbrewery in Norway. The brewers are highly skilled and they produce excellent beer and great food to go with it. You will find people from all walks of life here, from students to seniors.

Trondheim microbrewery

Prinsensgate 39, Oslo

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Ølhallen is an institution in Tromsø. Many a tall tale has been told here.

Ølhallen

Ølhallen is steeped in tradition and first opened its doors in 1928, although women were not allowed in until the 1960s. It is famed for its many adept storytellers as well as for its excellent range. They only sell Norwegian beer.

Ølhallen

Storgata 4, Oslo

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Piccadilly Pub, Bodø

In Bodø, the Piccadilly pub is the place to be, and it serves a wide range of foreign and Norwegian beers. You should also try Bådin, a locally produced beer.

Piccadilly Pub

Storgata 4 b, Bodø

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Cardinalen in Stavanger has a huge selection of beers.

Cardinalen, Stavanger

This pub has a vast range, with a total of 507 different beers on tap. You will also find lots of Belgian beers, which go particularly well with food, unlike the more bitter ale varieties.

Cardinalen

Skagen 21, Stavanger

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Henriks øl & vinstove, Bergen

In this bar, which is housed in a building from a bygone age, the entire focus is on the tasting and enjoyment of beer. So there is no music. The beer menu contains a wide range of beers, including many Norwegian and foreign brands.

Henriks øl & vinstove

Ekspedisjonen Skjenkestove is a brewery pub. Photo: Helge Skodvin

Ekspedisjonen Skjenkestove, Loftus

They brew their own beer here and even the glasses get in on the fun. This summer, for example, you can enjoy the cherry festival (July 23-26). Only open on Fridays and Saturdays.

Ekspedisjonen Skjenkestove

Ekspedisjonen Skjenkestove, Loftus

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Crowbar sits on trendy Torggata. Photo: Inga Ragnhild Holst

Crowbar, Oslo

This combination of brewery and pub in the same building opened in 2012. As well as its own fantastic beer, this place also makes a special kebab from pig knuckle – or how about a whole roasted suckling pig? Torggata has recently had a makeover and there are now lots of interesting places here in close proximity.

Crowbar

Torggata 32 , Oslo

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Oslo Microbrewery

Norway’s first microbrewery, where they started brewing their own beer back in 1989, long before it became fashionable. Which makes this small brewery pub an interesting experience. They only serve beers they have brewed themselves, so the selection can be limited at times.

Oslo Microbrewery

Bogstadveien 6, Oslo

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Grünerløkka Brygghus

Restaurant entrepreneur Jan Vardøen is behind this gastropub, which also has its own brewery. You can enjoy the brewery’s own beer here or try one of the many beers they have from all over the world.

Grünerløkka Brygghus

Thorvald Meyers gate 30 b, Oslo

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Schouskjelleren also has outdoor seating in summer. Photo: Inga Ragnhild Holst

Schouskjelleren, Oslo

This brewery pub is an experience in itself, located as it is in the magnificent cellar of the old Schous brewery at the bottom of Grünerløkka. Good selection, with 15–20 beers on tap and a bottle menu. The Schoushallen used to be here, but that was at street level, and in the past it was a place where a person could easily drink away all their pay. Today beer-lovers come here for the taste of the beer and it can get pretty noisy in the cellar vaults. Outdoor seating is provided in summer.

Schouskjelleren

Trondheimsveien 2, Oslo

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Last edited: November 5, 2017

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