Beer in Puerto Rico: Local Beers and Where To Find Them

August 5th is observed as Beer Day in Puerto Rico, people do not always want a reason to celebrate! Chilled beer on a hot summer day is the perfect soother and unmissable part of any vacation. For those looking to find beer in Puerto Rico, here is the summary of the beer scene in Puerto Rico. 

This Is Our Guide to Beer in Puerto Rico:

Microbreweries have taken off in a big way in Puerto Rico and the island is filled with independent and local artisanal beer makers that are getting rave reviews. We have curated a list of our favourite microbreweries in Puerto Rico.

Microbreweries in Puerto Rico:

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  1. Coqui Beer: This golden lager is the lightest beer made in German-style Helles brewed from German 2 Row Pilsner malt and other speciality malts. The Coqui has a light golden colour with an impeccable taste. This one goes very well with shellfish, bar snacks like Tapas and light entrees and contains 4.75% alcohol by volume.

  2. Old Harbor Beer: A full-bodied, copper-coloured Pale Ale prepared with exquisite flavours of American Hops and balanced by using caramelized malts with sprinkles of smooth fruit flavours from yeast. Old Harbor has a hint of fresh Hops without the bitterness. This brew is meant to become a classic. And yes, Brew goes very well with red meats and spicy foods. It contains 5.6% alcohol by volume.
    microbrewery
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  3. Taina Beer: Taina is a seasonal beer. The Brew Master utilizes the finest and highest quality ingredients in its preparation. Various types of beer are prepared depending upon the season and following the best of brewery traditions.

  4. Cofresi Beer:This Stout beer is creamy and rich with flavours of coffee, dark chocolate and balanced by the sweetness of the malt. It is prepared with darkened malt that is heated and grilled to achieve its texture. Cofresi has a smooth full body and goes very well with red meat, dark fruit and chocolate desserts containing 6.0% alcohol by volume.

Puerto Rican Beers

Beer in Puerto Rico is especially famous. Local brews that compete with imported beers such as Corona, Heinekin and Coors on almost every level. Here are the details and our favourite brands of beer in Puerto Rico:

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  1. Medalla Light: Medalla is the most iconic and popular Puerto Rican brew. Pale golden in colour with a light soapy head and sweet malty aroma and flavour with a bit of a cidery finish – totally sophisticated by design. It is excellent for steamy tropical days. Medalla Light is a mass-produced lager that goes down especially well on the beach. And it’s true: there is only Light no Regular. No idea why! 
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  2. Magna Special Craft: Magna was launched in 2011 and is a premium lager aiming at making a big name in the premium category, where Heineken is the undisputed leader in the segment with 15 per cent of the island’s total beer market and over 90 per cent of the premium-beer sales. It delivers full-body flavour but it tastes light and does not feel heavy after a couple of beers.

  3. Buyé: Launched in 2012, this beer is identified by its red, white and blue can. Buyé is named after a popular beach in Cabo Rojo and competes against local market leaders Medalla Light (made by Mayagüez-based Cervecera de Puerto Rico) and Coors Light.

  4. Keystone V9: Keystone has been around for many years but it is made by Coors Brewing Company exclusively for Puerto Rico under the name Keystone V9. The can is black in colour with a blue “V9” and is labelled as 5.9% alcohol/volume. It is prepared from Barley Malt, Yeast, Corn Syrup(Dextrose) and Hop Extract.

Where to Find the Best Beer in Puerto Rico

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  1. Old Harbor Brewery, Carolina: Old Harbor opened in Old San Juan back in 1996. It overlooks the area where the cruise ships dock. It has maintained its focus on German styles and is now located a bit outside the metro area with a new tasting room. The Coquí, a lager named for an omnipresent local frog, is a light, pleasant yes to the tropical locale.

  2. Ocean Lab Brewing Company, Carolina: Ocean Lab’s presence on the island now competes with that of Medalla. Its tasting room is one of the most fun and accessible, with a full food menu and vistas of the beach. The thick Mambo tastes like pure passion fruit, tart and refreshing, and Hop Diver IPA unites grapefruit with other local citrus flavours for a beer that tastes exactly like Ocean Lab’s tagline: “born on the beach.”

  3. Boxlab Brewing Company, Aguadilla: Boxlab has emerged as a favourite on the island and has some of the most stylish branding to begin with. Its concoction is prepared and flavoured with lemongrass, lemon zest, ginger and honey. It is inspired by a local cough remedy, the hazy, citrusy Lumen IPA and a hop-flavoured non-alcoholic sparkling water.
Puerto Rico’s thriving brewing scene proves that beer can make a small island feel very, very big.

This post was published by Vidushi Nigam

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