Plato is quoted as saying: “He was a wise man who invented beer.” While the authenticity of his authorship is a bit dodgy, let’s go with the sentiment. Czechs know a thing or two about beer brewing, and recently a Czech bishop blessed a certain batch of the country’s flagship brew, Pilsner Urquell, to be delivered to the Vatican for Easter.
Blessing Pilsner Urquell goes back to the beer’s humble beginnings when the first blessed batch was served in 1842. On April 20, the beer will be sent to the Giovanni Paolo II church restaurant in Rome, where it will be served. Some of the blessed beer will also be kept in the Plzen Brewery Museum.
The special Easter brew will have been symbolically maturing for about 40 days, historically the Christian fasting period of Lent. The blessing of beer is relatively rare; however there is a tradition behind it as many monasteries used to have their own breweries. The purpose of the blessing is not for the beer itself, but the person who will be drinking the beer.
Photos courtesy of Pilsner Urquell Brewery