A quarter of Kulmbachers earn their living directly or indirectly from beer. Kulmbach celebrates its brewing traditions every year in a nine-day festival that starts on the last Saturday in July. The main festival site, a mammoth tent, is called the Festspulhaus—literally, "festival swill house"—a none-too-subtle dig at nearby Bayreuth and its tony Festspielhaus, where Wagner's operas are performed. If you're here in
winter, be sure to try the seasonal Eisbock, a special dark beer that is frozen as part of the brewing process; making it stronger.