Even if Brouwerij Zeeburg started brewing in 2009, as the books of the Chamber of Commerce state, it could already be considered a senior among all new arrivals. Fact is that the guy behind this small enterprise has decades of brewing experience to add to the few years of official brewery status. The Belgian beers flooding the Netherlands and the opening of Brouwerij ‘t IJ in the 1980s, inspired co-founder Robert van Lil to give brewing a shot. He produced his first batch using the enamel wash tubs of his parents in 1986. Skills and equipment improved over the years and as a result Robert took home a gold medal from the amateur brewing championships in 2000.
Currently, Robert runs the brewery alone, besides his work as a maritime archaeologist. He is diligent, finetuning recipes to perfection. This results in a very small assortment: a tripel and a doppelbock. But it also results in critical acclaim. After claiming the silver in 2011, his doppelbock was voted the best Dutch doppelbock in 2012.
Brouwerij Zeeburg might not be as vocal as some of Amsterdam’s new breweries, it’s labels are less funky, it’s overall image not as cool, but there is undeniable skill in the production of their beer. Grab that doppelbock if you get a chance and realize why they call this kind of stuff craft beer.