The ruin pub of craft beers – Élesztő

Photo : Kőrösi Tamás - We Love Budapest
The ruin pub of craft beers - Élesztő

Tűzoltó Street 22. started its career as a glassblowing factory before it was turned into a parking lot and later a ruin-pub called Tündérgyár (Fairy Factory). Now this almost place has become Élesztő, the Gettysburg battlefield of the Hungarian craft beer revolution; it’s a like a mixture of a pilgrimage site for beer lovers, and a ruin-pub with 17 beer taps, a home brew bar, a theater, a hostel, a craft pálinka bar, a restaurant and a café.

The pilgrimage site
  • 1094 Budapest, Tűzoltó utca 22.
Probably we were the first ones – besides the staff and the workers – who had the chance to visit Élesztő (Yeast), the new holy spot of beer-pilgrims, designed to be something like a ruin pub, however it’s a lot more than that; in Budapest it’s a real “groundbreaker” according to the owner, Dániel Bart, who also said that it doesn’t matter how many craft beer bars open in the city, they could all be successful as long as beer gets the kind of respect it deserves. This is one of the reasons why Bart’s other place Léhűtő Craft Beer Bar is not a rival.
Photo: Tamás Kőrösi - We Love Budapest
Only one beer is no beer…
Élesztő is officially should be called a “multi tap bar”, but most likely nobody will ever refer to it that way; what you see here can not really be put in any category.

In Élesztő, beer pours from 17 different taps, all filled with quality Hungarian craft beers. On their first menu guests can find: Keserű méz (Sour Honey), Fóti Pils, Sherwood Ale, Brandecker Bodzás Barna (Elderberry Brown), Splash, Távoli Galaxis (Faraway Galaxy), Little John, Fekete Mária (Black Mary), Csobánkai Öregsör Csobánka Old Beer), Dupla Köleses Sör (Double Millet Beer), Békésszentandrási Szilvás (Plum from Békésszentandrás), Szüretlen Félbarna Búzasör (Unfiltered light brown wheat beer), however the selection will always change according to the need of the costumers. With all these weird beer names, the staff is determined to open a new world for those who are not yet familiar with Hungarian beer culture, hoping that it will be love at first try.

According to the plan, if anything interesting happens in the Carpathian Basin, and it has to do with beer, Élesztő will be the first place where you can get it. However, the selection will not lack liquid bread from outside of Hungary either; the London-Budapest Beer Express is about to start soon that is to bring us beers like Crate and Camden Brewery. Until then, the bottled beer palette consists only foreign brands. 
Beer Empire
Besides just chugging beer Élesztő’s Brewery School and Home Brew Bar will also play an important role; in the latter one guests can see how home-made beer is born, and they can also the first ones ever to taste them. Important to know that these will not belong to the craft beer category, for they will be only produced in small (not more than 20l) portions.
Also the place will have its own craft pálinka bar for those who crave something stronger, a hostel for foreigners who get stuck here for a little bit longer than expected, an apartment-restaurant for beer dinners, and a café, where even the ripped out buttons will be sewn back on your coat.
The place is so complex that is has its own theater for filmclubs, jazz concerts and other lectures that will most likely be connected to beer somehow. On the outside stage only smaller performances will take place due to the legal sound limit and in order to not bother the neighbors.