Argentine Beer: Have a Pint or Three

Gringo in Buenos AiresDrink7 Comments

The world of beer drinkers can be easily divided ‘in twain’ (which is just a fancy way of saying ‘in two,’ but I like to keep things interesting). In the first, much larger group, we have the people who like beer and drink it often, but don’t really do so for the taste. They’re happy to drink any beer that’s cheap, cold, refreshing, easily available, not horrible-tasting, and contains alcohol.

Now, if you’re a member of this group and you find yourself living in Buenos Aires, then your needs are well catered for. Quilmes is an entirely reasonable lager, and if you get sick of it or want a slight taste variation, then just about every beer fridge and bar in Buenos Aires offers you a host of alternatives: Stella Artois; Isenbeck; Budweiser; Heineken; Schneider, and so on.

The second, smaller group of beer drinkers however are aficionados who DO drink it for the taste. Now, when you eat or drink something ‘for the taste,’ that almost always means that you want a lot of taste. And lagers (like those listed above) just don’t have it. If you need proof, point your browser at www.ratebeer.com, check out their Top 100 list for 2010, and count how many of them are lagers. Or don’t bother, because I’ve done it for you: there are none. Zero. Not one.

So if you’re a beer aficionado living in Buenos Aires, forget the beer fridge at your local chino or the tap beers at your local bar. But now what? Unfortunately, Argentina is just not built for beer lovers (maybe it’s because the wine is so good). While your transfer to Germany or Belgium comes through however, the decent selection of microbreweries in BA might just tide you over. Here are three of the best:

* Antares. Antares is a microbrewery with seven pubs in Argentina. The one you’re most likely to find convenient is their flagship pub at Armenia 1447 (between Cabrera y Gorriti) in Palermo. They do seven of their own beers and I personally am addicted to the Scotch. Antares beers are also on tap at the Gibraltar pub in San Telmo.

* Cossab. Another great option is Cossab’s ‘cervecería artesanal’ at Carlos Calvo 4199. The surroundings are pleasantly bohemian, they do six of their own beers (the Cossab India Pale Ale is the best), AND they have all-you-can-eat pizza on Wednesdays and Thursdays for 19 pesos per person. Like, what are you waiting for?

* Buller Brewing Company. The good folks at Buller Brewing Company obviously have your interests at heart, because they offer two locations (Roberto Ortiz 1827, Recoleta, and Paraguay 428, Microcentro) for your . It’s a little more expensive than the other two options here, but Buller’s beers are so good you’d swear they were German. In particular, don’t leave without trying the India Pale Ale and their honey beer.

So there you have it. Three excellent purveyors of microbrew and many locations for you to quaff them in. Go on, have another pint!