A guided tour through the brewery of Vielank and why oxen go along with it

Vielank is a small village in the south-west of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and is well known for it’s brewery right in the center and about 180 cattle gazing on meadows around.

So why does a brewery has 180 cattle and why are they connected to it?

Well, thousands of years ago there existed the aurochs (known as European wild cattle), which is the prime cattle race of all cattle existing today. Around 1642 the last aurochs died and the race is extinct. Fortunately two zoologists tried to recreate that race with a certain genetic structure and breed a race which comes very close to the aurochs. It’s called Heck cattle. 

Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania was well known for the aurochs and has it’s symbol as a main part within it’s flag. So does the brewery of Vielank. Today they are having about 180 cattle gazing permanently outside. Each year about 60 of them are shot directly on the meadow to use their meat. Every part of the animal is used and most of it is consumed in the restaurant of the brewery.

The brewery itself was found in 2002 and unfortunately it got broke so that another investor bought it and spent a lot of money to rebuild an even bigger brewery. He attached a cellar, whisky distillery and several other improvements. Today 40tons of barley are processed per week into different kind of beers and whiskey. There are several lemonades and a cider going along with it. All of them are made of spring water which origin is directly below the buildings. Is has the perfect specification to be used for the process. This water is used to be mixed with the barley malt to be heated up for several hours. After the malt was extracted the texture will be cooled down. Depending on the kind of bear a certain amount of yeast will be added and the fermentation starts. After a view days it will be refilled to maturation tanks where the beer develops it taste within several weeks. Of course the whole process follows a secret recipe and contains a certain mixture of ingredients. The whisky distillery was established a bit later in nowadays they offer a great variety of that, too.

Today the brewery supplies the whole north of Germany from bigger supermarkets over restaurants to smaller establishments. It’s well known and the best booked hotel within it’s area.

Even the restaurant is well known and often fully booked. So I was happy that the chef spent a few minutes of his time talking to me. He revealed that they are known for their good meat of their own cattle. It’s meat hasn’t a very fat texture but a strong taste. It’s character is comparable with the meat of deers. That’s why most of the meat is best for long cooked meals like stews. He recommended simple dishes like an Italian Bolognese with that kind of meat to give it a special kick. Well, I will definitely try that!

All in all I have spent a lovely evening at the brewery and enjoyed different sorts of beer. All of them tasted very mild and refreshing. I also tried some meat of the cattle and was impressed by it’s strong taste. I definitely recommend visiting the brewery and the restaurant!


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