Landlocked countries and Edelweiss Beer

Many fish (probably Benito)

February is a great month for Sydney Harbour. On top of and under the water there is masses of activity. pommy_ch gets pretty excited when he sees flocks of seagulls attacking the surface of the water – that’s pretty much a daily event in February. The number of ocean liners berthing at Circular Quay is at its peak and the yachting season is in full cry. With yacht racing come plenty of horn blasting from the ferry captain as he warns skippers that try a little too hard for the right reach.

Big boat

The sight of an America’s Cup logo on the sale of a particularly regal looking yacht kicked off a fairly detailed conversation about landlocked countries. This was misguided as the America’s Cup is now held by the San Francisco Yacht Club, but who cares? “There’s actually double landlocked countries – Uzbekistan and Liechtenstien”. “Nah, Uzbekistan is on the Caspian Sea”. “Yeah, but Caspian Sea is landlocked”. “How’s it a sea, then?” “Bolivia’s landlocked, isn’t it?” “Yeah”. “But it’s got a navy.” “Well, it’s not landlocked”. “Yeah, it is”. A quick piece of research indicates that Bolivia is landlocked, but retains a navy in the hope that it will regain the coastline it lost to Chile in 1879.

Bolivian Ensign

Edelwiess, Edelwiess

That sort of segues into Edelweiss Beer. According to the beer’s website, Hofbräu Kaltenhausen is the oldest brewer of Weissbier in Austria and outdates those johnny-come-lately Bavarians. The adoption of the Edelwiess brand name is a relatively recent thing – as they try to link the purity of the beer to the Alps. The Edelwiess flower only grows in the Alps. How does this connect to the above? Austria is a landlocked country, Captain von Trapp sang about Edelweiss. He was a former officer in the Austrian Navy. Back when Captain von Trapp was around, it was the Austro-Hungarian navy and they had coasts. Austria is a little more realistic about its future coastal acquisitions and has done away with its navy.

If you like wheat beers, I’m sure you’d love this. Very clean, wheat taste and good fizz.