France is the undisputed country of wine, however for many years it has been producing new home-brewed beers, both locally and regionally.
Beer, a symbol of togetherness and authenticity
Here is an age-old drink that France has grown to love.
An established acknowledgement since the 18th July 2014: beer “comes from local tradition” and is listed as “cultural, gastronomic and landscape heritage of France”, alongside wine, spirits and cider.
In the North and East of France, discover French beer through museums, trips to brasseries and taste-testing.
A traditional drink in the North and East of France
Similarly to wine, beer can be sampled and enjoyed.
Whether it’s white, golden or orange, French beer clearly has its own savoir-faire which gains more respect each day.
With only 40 brasseries in the 90s, today there are over 600, adding to around 350 boutiques and bars which are entirely dedicated to beer.
Home-brewed beer can be found all over the country; however it is most popular in the North and Eastern parts of France.
In Alsace, beer is a very traditional drink, usually enjoyed with a bretzel for an aperitif, and is also used in typical food recipes, such as “jarrets braisés à l’amer bière” (Ham Hock braised with bitter ale).
In order to understand the entire history of Alsatian beer, visit some of the several brasseries and mini-brasseries around and find out about their many production methods.
Rendez-vous in Schiltigheim, the beer capital of Alsace, at the beginning of August to celebrate their Fête de la Bière.
In Lorraine, the neighbouring region, discover the International Museum of Beer in Stenay.
In Champagne-Ardenne, there are more than simply Champagne cellars that you can visit. The tourist strip called “la route de la bière et ses saveurs” (the Beer route and its flavours) will lead you across 40km of Ardennes brasseries (both French and Belgian).
Malted beverages have also been popular in the Nord-Pas-de-Calais region for a long time. Typical beers of the region include Gueuze, 3 Monts, CH’TI (Castelain Brewery) and Jenlain beer.
Beer in every French territory!
Local beers flourish everywhere, from Brittany to the South of France.
They even go as far as French Overseas Departments and islands, which each have their own:
- Piétra in Corsica
- Bière Ré on Île de Ré
- Bière des Naufrageurs on Île d'Oléron
- Lorraine in Martinique
Last but not least, new events for beer are always popping up, such as “Paris Beer Week”, a home-brewed beer festival that takes place in Paris during the month of May.