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Community / A souvenir with a difference: Lerwick beer’s journey to Washington DC

The beer, opened, after making its long journey to the US.

IT was quite some journey, covering thousands of miles – motorbiking and sailing through Europe, from Shetland to Germany, before flying to Washington D.C. in the States.

It is not every day, though, that two bottles of Lerwick Brewery beer go on quite an adventure like that.

The glass bottles of IPA were taken back home to the US by Anna Schiller, who visited Shetland in July with her partner Chris on holiday and was determined to take a taste of the isles back with her.

“I don’t usually buy souvenirs on my travels, but I had a few Lerwick IPAs while we stayed in Shetland and I associate its taste with the fish and chips at No. 88, with the sunset over West Burra, and with an evening of live music at the Lounge,” she explained.

Anna and Chris travelled by motorbike around Shetland.

“Bringing back two bottles of Lerwick IPA is like having a secret door that leads from my front porch in Washington DC straight back to Shetland.”

Anna’s own trip began with a flight to her hometown Lübeck, in Northern Germany. From there she and Chris rode motorbikes through the Netherlands, Belgium and France before heading up the UK to the ferry to Shetland.

“We enjoy traveling to remote places on our bikes and Shetland seemed to offer everything we look for on a motorcycle trip: compelling natural beauty, a sense of adventure, cool temperatures, an intriguing community, and a window into a place that takes a lot of grit and determination to carve out a living,” she said.

“And Shetland did not disappoint. In fact, we enjoyed it so much, we’re determined to come back and spend more time exploring the islands.”

And by taking the beer thousands of miles across the world she could kick back with a bottle and be taken back to the isles.

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Thankfully they were kept relatively safe on their lengthy travels as they were surrounded by clothes.

“When I first moved to the U.S. as a university student, craft beer wasn’t as widespread here yet, so I often brought German beer with me when I flew over. I gained a lot of experience in safely transporting beer to America,” she laughed.

So how did the IPA taste when she opened the first bottle? Surprisingly, it was not flat.

“It tasted like Shetland: refreshingly cold, authentic, understated, unexpectedly mellow, and made only for those who can truly appreciate its uniqueness,” Anna said.

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