A Taste of Craft Beer

What can one say about the original craft beer tour in Hanoi from A Taste Of Hanoi? It is a grand old time. Perhaps it is from all the beers one will try over the course of the four-hour trip, but I think it is more than that. Just like with one of their other tours the tour guide gives you just the right amount of information about the beers without bogging you down with endless amounts of facts that no one will remember anyway. That is not to say, unless you are looking to know more about the beers and history than Chris, our tour guide of the night is more than willing to divulge more information. This allows the tour to be flexible to the parties desires to some degree. While it is a nice night out it is not your slogfest of pounding away beers. After all, this is craft beer. Something that should be enjoyed and savored. Beers that have unique identities that bring something new while holding on to traditions of brewing's past. Besides for most, it is still a fair amount of beer you get to try over the course of the tour.

The craft beer tour has been running now for some four or five months now, and over the course of that time, it has been conducted at least fifteen times. It starts off as any would introducing ourselves but with some beer specific questions such as what is your favorite beer. A question hard to answer when one is so exposed to the craft beer world. Something I know common for many of the brewers here. As we make our way to the first stop, the tour guide will give you a brief history of beer in Vietnam with while we drink the only non-craft beer of the tour, Truc Bach. But it is important to see where beer had started here and gives you a better baseline for what beer has become in this country.

The first stop on the tour is Hang Vui Craft Beer Restaurant all the way down in Linh Dam. The tour guide gives a little talk about the brewery, noting the look and scale fo the small scale large brewery. We get a tasting of the three beers they offer from Barett as well a small sample of the food. It is worth noting that everything about the tour is about local food and ingredients, so we taste some Vietnamese food that pairs well with the beers made just next door. And if you are interested more in Hang Vui and Barett you can find more in my previous article.

Next, we make our way to Hanoi Alehouse and try three more beer from brewers down in Ho Chi Minh City along with an assortment of locally made cured meats.  This stop is more about the beers as while a nice restaurant it is after all only a restaurant and not a brewery itself. Continuing to have the tour guide talk to us about the breweries and what one would expect to taste when enjoying the beers.

The third stop we make our way to the Tay Ho area and to The 100 for, of course, Furbrew. There, Thomas, the brewer, gives a quick little tour of their operation talking through their process and where the brewery is heading with its continuous growth. After, we try three more beers along with Thomas himself explains what we try. This part of the tour is the most varied of the stops as they have a significant rotation of brews and Thomas will pick out what he feels works best in a small sampling flight. And for being on the tour people can get a chance to purchase a bottle for takeaway at a discount.

Finally, we make our way to the last stop of The Fat Pig. There is where usually we will try three of the beers from an OG of craft beer in Vietnam, Pasteur Street along with a fair amount of food. The sausage and chicken coming from local sources as well.

The four or five hours of the tour really do not feel it, and I think for most it is one of the better tours. I think at no point there is not anything uninteresting as most are there with one goal and that is beer. It is a great thing to see the craft beer scene really grow in this country. This tour is an indication of that and a great tool to educate expats and locals alike to the wider world that beer can offer from these new breweries. I would highly suggest if you have an interest in craft beer or want to know more about beer itself than check out the original craft beer tour in Hanoi from A Taste Of Hanoi.

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