Real Beer in Spain

By all accounts, they've been brewing beer in Spain for over 4000 years so you would like to think that they should be pretty good at it by now. But sadly, you might be disappointed, or at least until fairly recently that is. Whilst it remains true that the big boys among the Spanish brewers continue to dominate the beer scene, particularly when it comes to the choice of draught beers available in the country's estimated 240,000 bars (apparently Spain has more bars per inhabitant than any other European country), it is also true that craft beers have begun to make their mark particularly over the last five years. 

Back in the UK, following the many years success of consumer organisation CAMRA in defining and encouraging demand for "real ale", the more recent growth in the sales of "craft" beers has at times led to discord between the two camps in terms of the merits of the latter and the "artisanship" of its production. Personally I like the definition of craft beer as being "beer brewed for taste versus beer produced for volume". Which is just as well in Spain because it's craft beers which are leading the way in the fightback against the usual fizzy and tasteless offerings. There is a good reason why Spanish beers are served fridge-cold and that is because the refreshment comes from the temperature and not the taste.

Okay, that makes me sound like a beer snob but the fact is that most Spanish beer is like lager and I like beer (remember, I'm a Brit) and the fact that real, tasty beer is becoming more widely available in Spain excites me. So, Mrs C and I are going in search of some of this real, tasty beer - after all, you can't spend all your time watching football.

No comments:

Post a Comment