Welcome to Belgrade... again


If this is literally the first issue of Ferment you’ve ever picked up, you might not have heard us raving about Serbia’s Dogma Brewing, and its larger-than-life co-founder/hype man, Vladimir Stojković. If so, welcome to Belgrade, and some of the Balkans’ most brilliant beers.

Dogma is based in an old red brick sugar factory complex, part of which is still derelict, but which also now plays host to a thriving community of small businesses. Every time I visit (which is as often as I can) Vlad has added a side-room here, built a new extension there – in short, business is good.

The brewery’s well-deserved international reputation was built on perfectly executed big-hop IPAs, full of resinous bitterness and ripe tropical fruit. Beers like Octopod and Plutonium were, and still are, absolute belters. Never a man to rest on his laurels though, Vlad’s line-up is a constantly shifting beast, still focusing on big flavours, but covering an impressively diverse range of styles.

Dogma is also quietly doing some very cool stuff on the sustainability front too. For example, it has for some time run a recycling scheme, where customers are encouraged to return their cans in exchange for a donation to various environmental and social charities. The brewery also pays for its spent grains and hop waste to be taken away and converted into green biofuel. Just when we thought it couldn’t get any cooler…

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