Elise Grandjean

Brewer’s horses - At Borgen

Carlsberg brewery is one of the biggest and oldest Danish companies, founded in 1847 by J.C. Jacobsen, who built an ambitious factory in Valby, which was then Copenhagen’s outskirts. Most of the beer is not made in Copenhagen anymore, but the company kept the old part of the area in order to retain certain traditions. The brewer’s horses are one of them.

Carlsberg used to have hundreds of these horses which pulled carriages loaded with beer for delivery to Copenhagen’s pubs. The few horses that are left only deliver for special occasions, but they still have to exercise and Copenhageners will often see them run with empty carriages in the streets.

I spent several days with the six horses that are left in April 2013. All are Jutland horses, the traditional Danish draft horses. And all are chestnut colored, because this is the tradition in Carlsberg, I was told by the three coach drivers I met.

I photographed them in the stable, trying to catch the daily life of horses and men. I also photographed their strolls in the city, as there are not many Danes that saw these familiar horses from that angle.

The old Carlsberg factory in Valby is one of my favorite places in Copenhagen and if you are lucky enough to visit this wonderful city, you should go there and say hello to the horses. 

Read more about the brewery on http://www.visitcarlsberg.dk/Pages/front.aspx.

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