Mikkeller launches new 'wild' beer festival on Refshaleøen

Wild ales are the focal point for Mikkeller's new beer festival, Mikkeller Baghaven Wild Ale Celebration, which will take place on Refshaleøen on February 7-8, 2020. Ticket sales have just begun. 

Wildly fermented beer has long been a prevailing trend in beer circles, and is known as one of the most experimental and exciting areas of micro brewing. This is why Mikkeller has taken the initiative to launch a festival focusing on this particular beer style.


“This beer style is still a relatively unknown phenomenon for most, which is really a shame. That is why we want to spread the word,” explains Mikkel Borg Bjergsø, founder and CEO of Mikkeller.

Mikkeller already organizes the annual beer festival Mikkeller Beer Celebration Copenhagen, held at Øksnehallen, as well as Mikkeller Beer Celebration Tokyo. At these festivals, sour beer is also represented – but it deserves its very own forum, explains Bjergsø:

“It's a really exciting and complex beer style, and as wildly fermented beers become more and more popular, breweries around the world have also begun to concentrate on producing them. We have invited some of the best in the genre to partake in this festival”.


Beer festival for wine lovers

The festival will be smaller and more intimate than Mikkeller Beer Celebration Copenhagen, with a total of approximately 30 breweries represented. There will be three sessions, each four hours long – one session on Friday and two on Saturday – with 600 tickets on sale for each session.

In addition to attracting beer enthusiasts from most of Europe, Mikkel Borg Bjergsø also believes that the festival is of interest to an audience who may usually prefer something other than beer in their glass.


“Natural wine has become very popular in Copenhagen in recent years, and if you are into that type of wine, this festival is a unique opportunity to get to know a beer style that is just as exciting and complex, a beer style that many would say in terms of taste has more references to wine than beer,” explains Mikkel Borg Bjergsø. 

The festival takes place at a former shipyard on Refshaleøen – as a natural extension of Baghaven, Mikkeller's barrel room, bar, and production space.



Mikkeller Baghaven Wild Ale Celebration

February 7-8, 2020

Refshalevej 189

1432 København K


Ticket info can be found here

For news and announcements, you can access the Facebook event here

The official Instagram-account can be found here




So far, the following breweries have been confirmed for Mikkeller Baghaven Wild Ale Celebration:

Jester King (USA)

Oud Beersel (Belgium)

Burning Sky (UK)

Æblerov (Denmark)

Bokke (Belgium)

Juguetes Perdidos (Buenos Aires)

Brouwerij Boon (Belgium)

Oxbow Brewing Company (USA)

2nd Shift (USA)

De Garde Brewing (USA)

Casey Brewing and Blending (USA)

Hill Farmstead (USA)

Brouwerij Lindemans (Belgium)

Sour Cellars (USA)



Baghaven is home to 12 large oak foeders, ranging in size from 3000 to 7000 liters, and over 50 225 liter California Chardonnay barrels. These oak vessels house beers where wild yeast and bacteria transform the liquid inside into products with incredible depth and complexity. In addition to barrel aging, the inhouse microbiology lab allows us to maintain our yeast and bacteria cultures, as well as isolate new strains from the air, fruit skins, and various other sources. These ‘wild’ strains bring a unique character that give the beer a true Copenhagen terroir. Expect to see a variety of fruited wild ales, rustic saisons, and other experimental styles being produced under the Baghaven brand. 





Wild ale

Wild yeast can be collected or naturally selected from the wild and purposely added to wort (unfermented beer) for fermentation. Wild yeast and bacteria typically behave unpredictably and can produce a myriad of different flavors and aromas. Most non-wild breweries consider wild yeast and bacteria to be ‘beer spoilers’, while wild ale producers consider their effects to be desirable. Flavors include ‘barnyard’, ‘funky’, ‘fruity’, and ‘sour’. Note that there is yeast and bacteria, both of which can be wild. Bacteria is responsible for making a beer sour, while yeast is responsible for funkiness, and dryness.



No purposely added yeast. Traditionally from Belgium (lambic) where the wort (unfermented beer) is cooled overnight in a large shallow vessel called a koelschip (coolship), and native yeast and bacteria in the air are responsible for fermentation of the wort over a long period of time. The most traditional way of producing wild beers.


Mixed fermentation

'Mixed fermentation' is a term that covers a controlled form of fermentation, in which more than one type of yeast or bacterial culture is actively added and contributes to the fermentation process of the herb. This means that for this very broad style, a respective combination of conventional brewer's yeast (saccharomyces), wild yeast (e.g., brettanomyces, abbreviated: Brett), lactic acid bacterial cultures (pediococcus or lactobacillus), or other microbial cultures not normally found in conventional beer brewing are used.

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