Beers of Paris

Recently I got to go to Paris to speak at a digital media conference called OFFF. While there, I made sure to be on the lookout for different beers of France. The most common beer, which I assume is France’s equivalent of Budweiser is Kronenbourg 1664. There’s not really much to say about this beer, other than it’s no difference than any other mass produced no frills beer.

The first ‘good’ French beer I had was called Adelscott. Although not as common as 1664, I did notice it at a bunch of different brasseries. It was pretty good, although it wasn’t a good thirst quencher. In fact, I would just say it was ‘alright.’ It had a heavy mouth feel and a nice hint of whiskey.

Another pretty common beer was Pelforth, known for the iconic pelican logo. Pelforth Blonde, a Euro Pale Lager, really wasn’t anything special. It was pretty light, good for a hot day. Later, I had a Pelforth Brune, which is apparently a bock. Like the name implies, it’s a darker brown ale. This one was quite good, I can say that so far in my journey, this was the best one I had so far.

My friend/coworker/co-presenter Mathieu is from France and lived in Paris for a few years and told me that mussels are very popular. Loving mussels myself I went out of find some. So on one night we found a nice place to have a big plate of mussels, watch the Brazil vs Chile match, and enjoy some beer. One of which was La Goudale. A light blonde, it paired well with the mussels. Very enjoyable. If I remember correctly, it had some floral notes to it.

One of my favorite beers in France was Desperados. Not for the taste, but just the concept. Desperados is a beer that is mixed with tequila. Just to be clear, it is sold that way premixed in the bottle, this is not something that you would do yourself. That said, it’s not really a great tasting beer. I like to think of it as a French Corona, except it is the beer that Corona might want to be – it’s a little stronger and has more of a bite. It is sometimes served with a lime, but doesn’t need it as it seems to have a citrus taste on it’s own. Either way, this is a very common beer in Paris and I would recommend people trying it, if just for the experience alone.

The last beer I want to mention is more like a mixed drink. It’s called a Monaco, and it’s beer mixed with a sweet fruit syrup, usually grenadine. It doesn’t taste like beer at all, it taste more like cherry soda or flavored seltzer water.

And that’s about it. I had a bunch of other beers as well, but I only wanted to ‘report’ on the ones from France. For instance, Carlsberg was pretty popular there. What was nice though was the lack of American macro brews, it was nice not to see Bud, Miller, Coors at every bar.