Craft beer in Ecuador

Discussion in 'South America' started by stevepat, Dec 22, 2017.

  1. stevepat

    stevepat Disciple (335) Mar 12, 2013 California

    Just got back from a ten day trip to Ecuador, spent most of the time in Quito, and was traveling with a friend who has been spending long periods of time in the country for the last 6 years. Quito's craft beer scene is decent and he tells me that it is really exploding and you can finally reliably get craft beer that is decent and occasionally legitimately tasty.

    The two best places we tried were ABYSMO brewpub which had, in my opinion, the best overall lineup of beers. Their stout was a proper stout (rare in a country where most dark beers taste like brown or black lagers), their dunkel was downright delicious, and their IPA was by far the best I had down there. Be sure to ask about beers they have on tap that aren't on the menu as we noticed a couple of enticing tap handles that looked like seasonals that we were never told about. (Ecuador as a rule seems to have a really hard time with the concept of the menu, many times we were given food menus that were about 80% erroneous and several places failed to mention that had beers other than Pilsener and Club until we specifically asked). The food looked good too but we didn't eat there. The other spot was Bandidos del Paramo which is a collaboration between Bandidos brewing (one of the more common bottled craft beer companies who make solid brews) and a german style brewer from the coast whose name I can't recall. They tap Bandidos brews as well as the house labeled Paramo brewing beers as well as some Hofbrau beers, they also had some other german imports in bottles and cans. Paramo beers were very good, the Cacao Stout was a really amazing and genuinely Ecuadorian beer just bursting with cacao and coffer bitterness and a slight peppery bite. They also made a delightfully smoothe oatmeal stout. There was a lot more on the board that I didnt get to try but that looked good. The food there is also tasty.

    In the more touristy mariscal foshe district there are a couple of gems worth stopping in at. Cerveceria Cherusker makes decent beers that are super fairly priced. A piquenito glass (12 oz probably) is 2.50 or 2.75 and the atmosphere of their space is great. Right across the street from them there is a place called Indie Beer co that does a little brewing but also taps and has bottles of a bunch of Ecuadorian brewers. It's a great spot to get a taste of everything Ecuador has to offer beer wise.

    Lastly, some bottles to look out for are the Quitena brand. Their stout was probably the single best beer I had on my visit and their IPA was decent as well (best IPA i had until I went to Abysmo, but there's not a lot of competition). And anything brewed by Caran. Caran says they use water from a special aquefer deep in the heart of some volcano and their labeling is pretty swank, their bottles are nice swingtops and their porter was another contender for best brew of the trip.

    There is also an annual festival at a place called Viva Cerveza (a pretty overpriced little bottle shop cafe thing in a fancy part of town) that looks like it would probably be fun if you are around in October. Quito is a great city and hunting around to the beer spots is a decent way to find different night spot districts. My guess is that within the decade Ecuador will be cranking out some world class beers.
  2. jfh

    jfh Initiate (132) Apr 25, 2008 California

    Thanks! will be there in a few days and can hopefully use your intel.
  3. jfh

    jfh Initiate (132) Apr 25, 2008 California

    Just got back. Stayed at Hilton Colon for a couple days (right next to Parque El Ejido). Walked to both Abysmo and Banditos de Paramo. Both worth investigating. Food at Banditos very good, we had a caprese salad that was tasty plus wings and fries. In both spots, a mix of english speaking likely US tourists and natives. Banditos is in an upscale neighborhood with nice looking houses and shops to look at as you walk. Didn't hit any grocery stores or bottle shops, we were headed to Galapagos. Generally speaking bottles of lager available everywhere. At the airport, I bought a Latitude Cero American Pale Ale that was more sweet malty than I would like.
  4. giediprime41

    giediprime41 Initiate (113) Nov 25, 2015 Florida

    If you ever return to Ecuador my favorite place is Shaman artisanal ales in Quito.
    Their vanilla stout (regression) and blackberry ale (elixir) are both very good.
    Plus you can buy bottles of all their beers at a good price.