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Craft Beer Nascent in Northern Spain

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On our recent visit to Northern Spain, we found a nascent craft beer scene.  While local Rioja, Albarino and Cava wines and are most ubiquitous in San Sebastian, a gastronomic destination (more Michelin rated restaurants per square meter than any other city except Kyoto; more than Paris and New York!), “artisanal” beers are starting to make their presence known.

At Arzak, a 3 star Michelin restaurant, a pintxo (Basque for tapas) starter called “Black Pudding and Beer” is served on top of a crushed Kellerbier can!  Ni Neu in San Sebastian proudly displays brews from local Gar & Gar & Basqueland Brewing.

b2ap3_thumbnail_blackpuddingnbeer.jpg  b2ap3_thumbnail_Nineu.jpg

At Nerua in the Guggenheim Bilbao, diners can choose between two Baladin Italian craft brews and Altura de Vuela from Fernandez Pon in Valencia.

b2ap3_thumbnail_Bilbao.jpg

One retail shop, which just last week featured a variety of European craft beers, now features one regional product per week with a full craft beer selection available downstairs.  This week the feature is Valencia oranges, and Mikkeller Orange Yuzu Glad I Said Porter is included with the display.

b2ap3_thumbnail_Orange.jpg  b2ap3_thumbnail_Store.jpg

We also sampled some Dougall’s craft brews, Raquera & their IPA.  The brewery’s tag line is “Piensa Global – Bebe Local” or Think Global – Drink Local.  Sound familiar?

b2ap3_thumbnail_Dougall2.jpg

Early stages, but it appears that the craft beer scene in one of Europe’s gastronomic centers is on the rise. 

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Guest Saturday, 23 September 2017