A Russian pagan republic championed hops before microbreweries ran mainstream now it wants to be back on the global brew map, The Calvert Journal reports
Cheboksary is only a night train ride away from Russias capital but it could be on another planet. By 10 am the temperature is already approaching the high twenties, its trees are decorated with ribbons and animal bones, and store windows are painted with intricate geometric designs.
The city is the capital of the Chuvashia Republic, a place that has for centuries defied Russian Christian hegemony and where locals still conduct colorful pagan rites and follow a pantheon of deities.
The republic is also one of the worlds oldest beer-producing regions, with a tradition of harvesting hops and drinking brew as part of their religious worship.
Now, in a bid to return to its former glory as a Soviet-era hop superpower, local scientists and brewers are hoping that the craze for microbreweries springing up from Moscow and St Petersburg could once again bring investment to Chuvashs farms.
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