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Old 06-09-2009, 03:17 PM   #1
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Default I'm heading to France, what should I drink?

So I'm heading off to Normandy and Brittany next week. The last time I went to France I was drinking primarily Leffe because it was widely available, but these days I'm sometimes finding it too sweet for my tastes. I'm also a huge fan of Chimay, which I find to be awesome no matter what my mood is.

I know the French are more into wine than beer, but I also know they have a lot of Belgian ales available since they're so close. Anyone have any suggestions or some holy grail of a beer I should seek out?

Thanks.



Reason: Typo in title.
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Old 06-09-2009, 03:20 PM   #2
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Pastis if you want to make friends. It is universally understood, and makes you look like you actually WANT to drink the same crap as the locals.


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Old 06-09-2009, 03:24 PM   #3
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French beer sucks. You think the Germans would have taught them a thing or two during the occupation. Stick with the wine.
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Old 06-09-2009, 04:07 PM   #4
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Water.

Go to Belgium for good beer.
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Old 06-09-2009, 04:20 PM   #5
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Each and every Biere de Garde you can find.

That is all.
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Old 06-09-2009, 04:27 PM   #6
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I was there for the first time last April. I'm a wine geek also, so I searched out the domaines everywhere I went, but when you go into a cafe, you will usually find 3 beers on tap. Usually it's K-bourg (France's budweiser), K-bourg 1664 (no difference), and some kind of light belgian abbey ale like Grimbergen or Leffe. Good luck finding much else.

HOWEVER, the closer you get to Germany, the better chance you have of finding a gold mine. We were in Alsace one day, in an awesome little town called 'Ribeauville', and we climbed up the mountains behind the town to some old ruins, had lunch, and when we climbed back down, the very first little shop we encountered was this incredibly awesome beer and whiskey bar. That's all they had, fine beer and fine whiskey...



a delicious sour lindemans fruit blend lambic...



and the view...



Anyway, if you can somehow stumble upon a place like this, you're good. Otherwise...prepare for Grimbergen!
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Old 06-09-2009, 04:37 PM   #7
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Don't drink the water, otherwise you will become like the french. I say drink the coffee and alcohols. Calvados is a good one, brandy, pastis as mentioned and absinthe (though I think the swiss make a better version). Drink the house wine wherever you go, it is good and cheap. Eat the cheese, it is fantastic. Try foix grois if you don't mind an expensive slice of liver that you will love or hate. Eat the Charcutterie. Essentially, eat while you are there and drink the house stuff.
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Old 06-09-2009, 05:07 PM   #8
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I would enjoy the wine in France and go somewhere else to drink good beer.
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Old 06-09-2009, 05:29 PM   #9
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In addition to what Evan! and FlyAngler18 said, drink Norman Ciders.
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Old 06-09-2009, 06:19 PM   #10
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If you happen to be in Paris, check out this place:

La Gueuze, Paris, restaurant quartier latin, la gueuze bar à bières quartier latin à Paris.


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