The quest for craft beer – South America (1)

One of our passions is beer. It’s true, we’re beer geeks. Being able to live in Belgium helps a lot: classical Trappist beers, beautiful Geuze beers, and plenty of changes in the craft beer scene, you name it, it’s all there in our small country. Small is beautiful.

The-Belgian-Beer-Guide

The last few years, we have been visiting breweries, beer festivals and shared lots of beers with friends and fellow beer geeks during (unofficial) tastings. But, mainly in Belgium and Europe. We gathered beers from breweries, shops, beer traders, always looking for the new stuff (the beer cellar is starting to explode).

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Our Big Trip will be the perfect occasion to take it to the next step,  in search of that one (or more)  refreshing, innovative new craft brew at the other side of the world. We already checked the 2 most used beer review websites in the world (Ratebeer, Beeradvocate), did some random Google searches, and, most importantly, asked some people we actually know living one of the countries.

Peru is especially know for it’s Pisco Sour. They have a few large scale (cheap) pale lager beers (Pilsen, Cristal), which is normal for any beer market (we’ve got our Stella, Jupiler and many others in Belgium). But it seems that the craft beer scene in Peru is picking up. There are around 25 microbreweries (most of them founded 2014-2016) and some brewpubs. We’ve found this very interesting group ( Unión de Cervecerías Artesanales del Perú) , so we’re looking forward trying some of these brews in Lima and Cusco:

  • Barranco Beer Company
  • Cerveceria Barbarian
  • Nuevo Mundo Cerveceria
  • Secret Valley brewery
  • and so on

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Personally, I think Bolivia is the largest “black box” level compared to the others. They do have this brew, called chicha. Famous for incorporating chewed maize, the majority of Bolivian chicha verdadera (“true chicha”) is actually brewed with home-malted maize. As a communal drink, chicha production is an elaborate affair that can take two weeks from malting to drinking. Continuing, we do found some information on microbreweries (8) and brewpubs (5):

  • Saya brewery (micro brewing over 15 years)
  • Kushaav
  • Stier
  • Blumenthal

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We’ll continue our research on the other countries and keep you posted. Cheers!

Small update (15/08/2016):

Peru even has a craft beer association “Unión de Cervecerías Artesanales del Perú“. I have been in touch with one of the members. They were so kind to share a list of all craft breweries currently part of the association. Looking forward visiting some of them:

7 Vidas Tacna Botellas y Chopp
Agora Lima Botellas
Barbarian Lima Botellas y Chopp
Barranco Beer Company Lima Chopp
Beerstache Lima Botella
Cerveceria del Valle Cusco Chopp
Cumbres Lima Botella y Chopp
Gold Cerveceria Lima Botella
Hops Trujiilo-Lima Botella y Chopp
Invictus Lima Botella y Chopp
Jaya Lima Botella
Lapazco Lima Botella
Maddok Lima Botella y chopp
Magdalena Lima Botella y chopp
Melkim Arequipa Botella y Chopp
Nuevo Mundo Lima Botella y chopp
Oveja Negra Lima Botella y Chopp
Planeta Bierra Lima Botella y Chopp
Saqra Lima Botella y Chopp
Sierra Andina Huaraz Botella y Chopp
Teach Lima Botella y chopp
Tio Luque Lima Botella y chopp
La Candelaria Lima Botella
Zenith Cusco Botella y Chopp
Knock Out Lima-Chile Chopp