OHIM – Tommie Sjef Wild Ales in wondrous dilemma

The ‘OHIM’-blogs I like best are those in which there is really nothing to grumble, but where one can actually report exceptionally good news – this is one of them. And no, I have no interest in Tommie Sjef Wild Ales – I’d like to – but since the young man is playing a key role in My Life With Beer, welcome him back to the stage please, ladies and gentlemen! This time it is about the strange dilemma in which he finds himself: there is currently no Dutch brewer that gets as much media attention as he does, and there is currently no Dutch brewer that has so little beer available to fully benefit from such attention as Tommie Sjef.

De shed in Den Helder

The reason for all this media attention is of course the phenomenal feat TS Wild Ales has done: out of 6,500 new breweries making their appearance in 2015 in the world, users of the international community of Ratebeer put Tommie Sjef Wild Ales in eighth place! With seven American, one Polish and one Belgian brewery (the latter took first place, and most of the top ten has sours or wild beers as a specialty), a 23-year-old Conservatory student from Den Helder is therefore one of the ten best new kids on the block in Beer Country. Coincidentally, with this performance Tommie Sjef keeps a unique string alive: in 2015 and 2014 Kaapse Bouwers and Zundert also seized the eighth spot in the top ten “Best New breweries in the world” list. I’m already wondering who will be there next year …

The regional newspaper featured him thrice in the last week, with even a front page opening. “Hart van Nederland” sent out a team to report on him and his world fame (a beer sommelier was also requested to comment; see the item here). And coming Friday Tommie Sjef is again on television – receiving a visit from the KRO-NCRV who recorded an item for Inside-Out: Leon Mazairac and Fiona de Lange came visiting. In short, the world seems to revolve around Tommie Sjef right now, and that is usually the time to take advantage of it unabashedly. But, in the shed in his mother’s back yeard, there’s only a little beer maturing, and the little warehouse he rented with an eye for expansion down in picturesque Den Helder is still mostly empty. Big plans there are, but the reality is there’s but a little TS Wild Ales available today. A devious split, on your 23th.

This curious situation resolves itself without a doubt fast: there will be foeders added and what matures now will already sit in the bottle by summer, but it seems to me now is the time for those who love wild beers to seize the last bottles Tommie Sjef Wild Ales available in store. There will, of course and because of this recent valuation, soon be a glaring shortage of his beer. For those who want to strike immediately: in his web shop you can find Backslash, Braam-Vlier and Opal for ordering – while stocks still last.

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