Beer Sampling in El Bolsón

This region has long been the biggest producer of hops in Argentina, and with a local population dedicated to agricultural pursuits, it's logical that entrepreneurial cervecerías artesanales (artisanal breweries) would become a growing industry.

Cervezería El Bolsón. About 2 km (1 mile) north of town, Cervezería El Bolsón is the brewery that started the Patagonian "cerveza artesanal craze," and even if it is now the least artisanal of the bunch, it's still a local landmark. Every night from December through March, and Fridays and Saturdays for the rest of the year, the brewery's tasting room turns into a hopping bar and restaurant, where picadas (kind of like tapas), pizzas, sausages with sauerkraut, and a hearty goulash are listed on one side of the menu with suggested beers on the other. For instance, black beer is recommended with smoked meats; chocolate beer with dessert. There are 14 types of brew for you to taste, and descriptions of their ingredients are provided. A large campground is conveniently located by the river in back. There is now a second location (Cervezeria El Bolsón Centro) in town at the corner of San Martin and Juez Fernandez. Ruta 258, Km 123.9, El Bolsón, Río Negro, 8430. 2944/492–595; www.cervezaselbolson.com. Credit cards accepted. Tues.–Sun. noon–midnight.

Otto Tipp. Herr Tipp was a German immigrant who opened the first local brewery in 1890. Beers here include the classic triumvirate of blonde, red, and black—plus non-alcoholic malt beer and a fruity wheat beer. You can watch them being brewed and bottled from a bar stool. Islas Malvinas at Roca, El Bolsón, Río Negro, 8430. 2944/493–700. Credit cards accepted. Daily 11 am–midnight. Closed Mon..

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