Do the French drink much draft beer?

Old Jul 23rd, 2006, 05:02 PM
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Do the French drink much draft beer?

I like wine and plan to drink my fair share over the 3 week period (Paris, Normandy, Provence, Burgundy) we will be in France. However, I enjoy a good draft beer every now and then. I don't like Belgian wheat beer very much. Is there a brand that's close to the taste of Smithwick's or Guinness?
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Old Jul 23rd, 2006, 05:20 PM
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Oh, yes, they drink plenty of beer. Ask for a "pression," i.e. on
tap.

(I don't drink beer, but knowing how to order one for my husband in multiple languages has kept us married for 33 years.)
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Old Jul 23rd, 2006, 05:42 PM
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In the "33 years of your marriage" have you put to memory the type of beer he likes? I expect Paris might offer any number of "imported" beers, like Guinness. What about the French breweries? Have you a name for me? I refuse to order Bud even if it's the only tap available!
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Old Jul 23rd, 2006, 05:49 PM
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In Europe, he usually only wants to order a beer when it is a good European beer, or a decent local variety. (He may not know languages, but he knows beer.) He is rather picky about both beer and wine, which he also imbibes in good quantity.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2006, 06:11 PM
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My DH and I just returned from Paris. There is a very good French beer, we had it from the tap at Harry's New York Bar (pression as the previous poster said), called Balzane. It was light and not so heavy as some of the wheat beers served. We saw the Harry's sign and just had to go in!! (near the Place de Vendome) Of course, we also had our fair share of wine and found that going to the local stores to pick up a bottle or two of wine to have in our room was a great, economical way to try some of the wines. Bring a wine opener!

Three weeks, wow, have a great trip!
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Old Jul 23rd, 2006, 06:14 PM
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Our fav was Kronenbourg 1664.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2006, 06:31 PM
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DH likes L'Abbaye de Leffe... but when I Googled it, I found that, like Poirot, it's Belgian instead. It is widely available in France.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2006, 06:41 PM
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starrsville: Kronenbourg obviously is a German beer. Is it full bodied or more on the light side? I like the thicker, heavier beers. It will be September when we are there and I'm hoping that the summer heat will have subsided, making for refreshing daytime temps with crisp evenings...just perfect for a good full tasting beer.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2006, 07:07 PM
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Actually, I'm pretty sure that Kronenbourg is French... notice the spelling "bourg" and not "burg." It's a lager, according to DH.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2006, 07:14 PM
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K1664 is a French beer.
No it is not a Guinness type beer.
Yes, you will find draft beer in France.
K1664 was our favorite.
Visit www.k1664.com for more info. Probably too "light" for you
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Old Jul 23rd, 2006, 08:02 PM
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I did a little googling on 1664 and it technically is French, although from the Alsace region. I'll give it a try but might regard it as too light. Maybe it's about the hunt!
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Old Jul 23rd, 2006, 10:34 PM
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Kronenbourg is indeed a French beer-and a pretty good one too.
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Old Jul 24th, 2006, 01:03 AM
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Kronenbourg is a major international brand, and doesn't taste anything like Smithwicks or Guinness.
There are some small breweries in northern France which produce mainly bottled beers. There is also a chain of bars and restaurants which brew beers on the premises. I've had lunches in the one in Lille which offers a selection of draught beers of different types:
www.les3brasseurs.com.
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Old Jul 24th, 2006, 03:36 AM
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kronebourg is also from Alsace, may even be the same brewery as 1664.
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Old Jul 24th, 2006, 03:42 AM
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In paris the Brasserie Nord oppposite the Gare du Nord brews it's own beer and jolly good it is too. They make richer beers than the usual lager types.
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Old Jul 24th, 2006, 04:02 AM
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I bought my husband this - http://www.artisanpress.u-net.com/France/frbook.html.

There is a bar on the Boulevard St Germaine which has a huge selection of first rate bottled beers as well as several on draft. Sorry I don't remember the name but perhaps someone else knows it ? It is on the left as you walk away from the Boul. St Michel. I don't think France is big on stout- or porter-type beers but if there are any, they'll have them. (We accidentally ordered the champagne-sized bottle of a beer made in Champagne, allegedly partly using the champagne method - it was €40 = )
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Old Jul 24th, 2006, 04:28 AM
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>Kronenbourg obviously is a German beer.

Equally obviously, it is from Alsace.

It has been described as embodying French heartiness and German finesse.

Fischer LaBelle ain't too bad.

1664 is OK

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Old Jul 24th, 2006, 04:52 AM
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Here is a list of French beers (note: the links won't work). Kanterbrau is another popular French beer, although not nearly as popular as 1664.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...of_beer#France
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Old Jul 24th, 2006, 10:04 AM
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I usually drink 1664 on tap, in France, also. That is the premium line of Kronenbourg, I believe, and there is a regular Kronenbourg which is cheaper. I'm not a big beer drinker, however. I just don't like some of the odd wheat or other beers I've had in Europe, so stick to what I know I like. That is usually among the cheapest beers on draft, also.

I like Stella Artois okay, but it is Belgian. It's not heavy and dark, either. Some places have it on tap. I don't like real heavy beers at all, but do generally prefer Dos Equis in the US, rather than US beer (which I don't care for hardly any brand), or some British ale, maybe.
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Old Jul 24th, 2006, 10:11 AM
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The OP asked about beer on tap. 1664 is what came to mind. I liked it a lot.

I tried some bottled beer, but nothing really dark like a Guinness. I don't remember seeing any on tap, but then I wasn't looking for them.

I did ask for something similar to a Fosters or a Killians but didn't find anything - don't know if it were due to my limited French or if nothing was available. So, when I drank a beer (instead of wine) it was a 1664 (draft) or Fosters (can).

What a hard assignment to have for France - tasting French beer to find one you like. I'd print BTilke's list and just cross 'em off as I tried them
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