Top 10s: Favorite Beers
Before meeting Colleen I didn’t fancy, or even want to try different types of beer. I was happy with the status quo, that being BudLight, Coors Light, Miller Lite and maybe even a Bud Heavy if I was feeling a little crazy. Well, like all great things I have evolved and now I love to shell out 8 dollars for a pint of IPA, seasonal or pale ale. Porters or stouts, nope, not this guy. I tried Guinness in Ireland and hated it as much as Guinness in America.
While traveling on a budget I generally drank the cheapest thing. Given the lack of options, the cheap way was usually the only way. South American beers were absolutely terrible, stick to the cheap and delicious red wine in Argentina and Chile. You can generally find good Malbec, Pinot Noir or other varieties of red for around 5 dollars a bottle. In Southeast Asia the beer is cheap and drinkable. Albeit, mostly all watered-down lagers. I favored Beer Laos, San Miguel, Tiger and Singha. You can pretty much get anyone of those options in whatever country you are in. African beers were interesting, especially at room temperature. With that being said, each country probably had 3 to 4 options and 1 or 2 of those was decent. Tusker was my favorite, mostly because of the awesome elephant label 🙂 Australia and New Zealand, like the US, have the micro-brewery craze in full effect so you can find any type of craft beer. Unfortunately, a pint will cost you between 8-14 dollars….ouch!!! Bottom line, I drank a lot of bad beers, these 10 weren’t terrible and some I might even drink again.
10. Efes, Turkey: The national beer brand of Turkey, I think the majority of it is pilsen, although they might have a few different varieties. OK tasting, OK price. The other alcoholic option is Arak. It is clear until you mix it with water. It then turns cloudy, WTF? It tasted not nice, kind of like Sambuca.
9. Taiwan Beer, Taiwan: Loved the simplistic title and logo. Tasted OK by itself. Add some street food from the night market to the mix and you had a solid combination. Taiwan doesn’t have a drinking culture and it is harder than one might think to locate a bar, making Taiwan Beer taste SOOOOO much better.
8. Tiger, Singapore: I love the colors blue and orange and I think tigers are badass. That is all.
7. Singha, Thailand: Singha is better than Chang and any other Thai beer I tasted. You can buy it at any one of the 5,000 7-11s in Bangkok, in a can or bottle, I prefer the can. Fancy huh?
6. Cascade, Australia: This was a proper brewery, brewing no less than 12 types of beer. They even have three different types of cider. None stick out, but all were better than most the beer found in South America, Africa and Asia. We had a lovely time at their brewery. Cheers to the developed West!
5. Tusker, Kenya: A beer with an elephant on it, done and done. I remember it being one of the more palatable beers we tasted on our African adventure. Did I mention it has an elephant on it?
4. Karlovacko (Limon Radler), Croatia: There was nothing better than hiking 5 or 6 miles and then stopping for a lovely, thirst-quenching Radler. Think gatorade with 2 or 3 percent alcohol. Is it going to get you drunk? Nope, but its refreshing and delicious. Are my friends going to make fun of me for drinking it? Probably, but its so good, totally worth the ridicule.
3. San Miguel, Philippines: This was actually a pretty fantastic beer, one that I would drink today if they weren’t 13.99 a six pack at my local beer store. Damn import taxes. I actually only drank them while on a 7 day sailing cruise in which we stopped at the most beautiful beaches known to mankind, so maybe I liked the ambience more than the beer. I guess I’ll have to drink it again to make sure it earned its #3 ranking.
2. Mac’s (Sassy Red), New Zealand: Oh it’s sassy. After drinking shit beer for over a year I was more than happy to pay 24 dollars a six pack for this amber sensation. But not too happy as we usually went for the more reasonably priced and better tasting Sauvignon Blanc at 10-15 dollars per bottle
1. Beer Laos, Laos: This is the quintessential Southeast Asian beer. The sight of it brings me back to the amazing region that is Southeast Asia. When I see it in a beer store my mind races and I can’t help but smile. I never thought you should put ice in beer until Mr. Beer Lao convinced me otherwise. Goodbye friend, import prices put you above my pay level but one day we will be re-united.