You may think I am mad. Indonesia is known to have very religious country with more than 80% of its population are moslem and moslem don’t drink alcohol.
However, I will still suggest you to this this “beer” while you are in Bogor. People in Bogor call it as “beershake”. It is a type of traditional beer locally made and can be found in the city, and also some other cities in Indonesia.
No, definitely I am not worried that I will be yelled or socially punished by others. Even, I am sure the act of proposing this beverage to you will draw support from many Bogor citizen.
The reason behind this is because everybody in the city knows quite well what the meaning of “beershake” or Bir Kocok in Indonesian.
Nobody will get drunk for drinking this. You may take 5 to tens glasses of Bir Kocok and I will not even be worried a little bit that you will do uncontrolled actions such as singing or disturbing people.
No, if you do that, definitely it won’t be caused by this “beer” or “beershake”.
Do you know why I am so damn sure about that? Because “beershake” is a non alcohol liquor.
Beershake or Bir Kocok is a drink made from ginger, cinnamon, clove, and palm sugar. The ingredients are then boiled or poached until they make a brown (the similar color to common beer) solvent.
If you buy it, then the seller will pour a glass of it into a thermos and then add ice cube. Then, the thermos will be shaken for a minute. You should know that if water that is shaken produces foam.
In the combination with the look of the brown water, the foam makes the drink look like common beer. So, that is why people call it “beershake” or Bir Kocok. Only because it has appearance like beer.
Definitely a non alcohol stuff.
Therefore, if you get drunk after drinking the beershake, people may stare at you and give you a smile. They will shake their head in disbelief.
Beershake is a traditional drink in Bogor. It was known in the city since early 1980’s and one of the most favorite drink for children from the era.
It’s sweet, bitter, and cold. It is also more healthy considering its ingredients and absolutely, it won’t cause addiction in bad meaning.
However, like also many other traditional stuffs, it has been marginalized by more modern drinks or beverages. It has become more difficult to find the sellers nowadays, not like in the past.
The only known seller can be found in Suryakencana Street, a place that is one of the centers of Bogor culinaries.
It is cheap but if you would like to try, then you must have an adventurous spirit. You won’t sit on bar table and talk to the bartender. You will have to sit on a plastic chair provided by the seller on pavement.
Nothing more perfect than this beershake to taste Bogor, at least a part of it. So, please write down the drink name, “beershake” or Bir Kocok as one thing you should try if you ever have a chance to come to the city.