The most famous Czech export – apart from the Škoda car – is beer ( pivo). Beer is also fondly known as “liquid bread” locally, hinting at its importance to Czech culture. And Evan Rail, author of Why
Beer Matters, says that “Prague is probably the best city in the world to sample traditional lager.”
The honey-coloured pale lager
( světlé pivo) is the most common and originates in the industrial West Bohemian city of Plzeň, hence the name “Pilsner”. Dark beer ( tmavé
pivo) is also available, but these days it’s less common.
Although big names such as Pilsner Urquell or Staropramen are most familiar to visitors, Rail urges them to sample the many new ales, including craft beers. “Prague’s beer scene is exploding. Just ten years ago we had only nine breweries in the whole city. Today we have 36, with more on the way,” he enthuses.