Overlooking the beautiful lofty valley of Bumthang is the first and only microbrewery of Bhutan Bumthang Brewery. A microbrewery is a brewery that produces small amounts of beer, typically much smaller than large-scale corporate breweries, and is independently owned. The quaint Bumthang Brewery along with the Swiss cheese shop, Yoser Lham Shop was established by a Swiss gentleman named Fritz Maurer. In 1960’s Maurer moved to Bumthang with the Pro Bhutan Foundation to develop the region’s farming. Bumthang Brewery is known producing the famous “Red Panda Beer” an unfiltered, preservative-free beverage.
Located further in the northern side of Bhutan, Bumthang Brewery is sited amidst the luxuriant land of beautiful fields. The brewery is not only famous for being the first and sole microbrewery but it also unique because of its owner Frits Maurer. Fritz Maurer has quite a history as being the first foreigner able to travel to Bhutan after being invited by the king. With his support of introducing brown Swiss cows in the country, Bhutanese people saw a gradual increase in the production of milk. He has the rare honor of being a Bhutanese citizen, even though he was born in Switzerland. After getting married with a local of Bumthang valley, he set up his own brewery and at the present time it is run by his son. At Bumthang Brewery only 3000 bottle of Red Panda Beer are produced per month and are recycled backed in production. The beer is brewed in the old school way in small batches, and carefully observed every step of the way during cooking, cooling, and fermentation. Each bottle is individually filled, capped, and labeled. When you visit, for only five dollars you get both the brewery tour and your own bottle. Seeing the whole process in Bumthang Brewery can be quite fascinating experience like seeing being in an episode of food factory. The brewery is really small but the visit can be worth an astounding memory to cherish life time.
Witness the whole beer making process while taking few unfiltered and preservative free local beer bottles as souvenir. Bumthang Brewery with its luxuriant garden, where bees can be seen busily collecting pollen, along with the conjoined cheese shop, where one can find chilly free cheese, and local beer is a must visit place while unraveling the grandiose and mystical dzongs of Bumthang.
Apart from Sunday visitors can visit Bumthang Brewery any day of the week but they should keep the timing of brewery in mind. On Wednesday & Saturday the brewery stays open form 8am to 5pm, on Monday & Friday from 1:30pm to 5pm and on Tuesday & Thursday 4-5pm.