Category: How to

Buy beer at the supermarket. Tips to avoid disaster

I say it right away: the supermarket is not (yet) a good place to buy beer. Of course, there are no shortage of exceptions, and chains like Coop, Esselunga, Iper or other large centers sometimes offer interestingly brewed products mixed with the chaos of increasingly camaleonian industrial beers. The enthusiast has no problem to immediately understand that he has had luck and fills the trolley of Saison Dupont on offer, but the able-bodied consumer how does he orient himself in front of a shelf? Here are some simple tips to try to limit the damage.

1) You will not have another beer if not bottled . Forget about cans and drums, to drink well we have to turn to glass. And possibly dark glass, because it is suitable for preserving beer. So we also take out the transparent bottles. And also the lime …

2) We are not at the island of the famous. We discard the brands that we saw on TV advertising: those with the stunning blonde, ice buckets or beer drank. If you are not an expert you probably know only famous brands. And famous brands means industry: beautiful and without soul. And no, the beer that my grandfather drank no longer exists. That brand has become a budget line for some multinational companies. No amarcord, let’s go on.

3) Reading is important . The label of a beer can sometimes help us a lot: first we read the ingredients (even if they are starting to disappear … alive sincerity). As we do not like to read “fruity” because we want real fruit, so we want barley malt, wheat, rye or oats. Not corn or rice which are substitutes of lower quality, and a mass-produced beer symptom. Then we read where the beer is produced and by whom: if the manufacturer is a code-fiscal code and the production plant can be in different countries then the spy “Beer to avoid” flashes wild.

4) Do not make it strange. Let’s skip the “exotic” beers; Japanese or Jamaican labels are often produced in Europe under license.

5) Do not be Uncle Scrooge . Good beer often costs a little more. If a liter of beer costs less than one euro on the shelf … we understand each other, right?

6) Belgian roulette . Often the good beers that are found at the supermarket come from Belgium: Trappiste and Dupont to begin with, but also Achuffe or Duvel can give more satisfaction than a Peroni. Unfortunately, even the best traps are (or appear to be) Belgian. Avoid various devils or demons, pirates, abbeys and unknown monks, also because you will often discover that they are all produced by a single company.

7) Experimentation leads to perfection . Throw the bottles you do not know into the cart. At home, try them and try to understand if they have an identifiable taste, if they satisfy you and if, after all, you like them. You will thus have a more concrete idea of ​​your tastes and, hopefully, you will launch to a pub (maybe one of the good ones …) to level up.

In the end, it is useless to do sophisms: if you like a Forst Sixtus, drink it tastefully. But one day, when you drink a BiBock, you will feel a difference that you can hardly do without.

How to choose the right beer

How to choose a beer? Today it is Saint Patrick , patron saint of Ireland and all over the world is celebrated holding a pint of beer. Maybe a Guinness , for purists doc. But there are a thousand types of beers and endless quality of beers. Especially when it comes to craft beers. And to explain it is a passionate Milan brewmaster, Riccardo Telesi. With these little tips at least we begin to debunk false myths related to beer and to learn about the world of craft beers.


  • Homemade beers
  • Bar or pub or a friend’s house


  1. In most cases the beers that are in the supermarket and the pub are industrial beers, so look for a pub where there are craft beers that are the most unique to taste and taste
  2. Why choose a craft beer ? They are not pasteurized and they are not filtered, they are live products that are produced in small quantities that can be elocalized: it is still a small market, it is a maximum of 2 percent
  3. How to choose a beer ? There is a wide spectrum with flavors defined from light to imperial stout – very dark alcoholic beers. In craft beers there is a well-defined spectrum of tastes, flavors and aromas.
  4. Dilemma between men’s beer and women’s beer : there are no clichés: it is not true that women drink sweet and clear beers and men of abbey beers. We must find out which tastes best suit each one of us
  5. Craft beer choice approach: only a matter of taste
  6. If you favor Italian productions: the brewers are famous for the stavaganza of their productions referring to Belgian, German and English canons but they use local products, also using the fruit not to sweeten but to compose the flavor.
  7. To choose a craft beer you have to take into account color and gradation
  8. The color: there are blond beers and dark beers. We must dispel the myth that the blonde beer is light and the black one is very alcoholic. It’s all a matter of malts : there are blondes of 11 and 12 degrees while there are excellent 4-degree black beers.
  9. Malt : for craft beer it is a matter of must. The more malt is used in production, the more alcohol will be beer. So from roasted malts you will get a dark beer, while if you use the basic malt as the pils the beer will be clear.
  10. Flavor and color: in fermentation, yes, the recipe is the same, but color is linked to the flavor, the malt will be dark and the caramel, chocolate, roasted malt and licorice (naturally without adding anything) dominate. In fact the color, the taste and the alcohol are given by the malt, based on the percentage and the type of malt more or less roasted will change the beer . Simple malts will give rise to lager, roasted and caramelized beer will make the strong taste of the most composed beers. If several malts are used, the taste of beer will be more complex
  11. You just have to understand what you like
  12. So how to combine them? beer offers matching and contrast solutions
  13. Example of pasta with pesto: difficult to combine with wines but goes well with German beers or in contrast with Belgian fermented beers that clean the palate and allow another taste of beers, or many English beers
  14. Example of combinations: you can accompany the salad with a lot of vinegar with acidulous and extravagant beers , fresh, if one loves sweets and a lot of sugar in the coffee then he will prefer beers with caramelized residual sugar (dark), there are bitter lovers with beers very full of hops, which seem to have the taste of grass.
  15. There are sofa beers between 10 and 12 degrees: you drink a cup, not a pint. The most famous example is that of spiced Christmas beers, to drink in cognac-type cups, at room temperature (not hot) to enhance the aromas and flavors
  16. How to choose St Patrick’s beer? So better the craft beers. However, there are alternatives to Guinness: the style is that of the stout . We can mention the “Green Bear” brewery that produces Nubia (also won prizes), the Confine beer is a porter; passing then to the always stout English beers there are O’Ahara and the Olster stout, and still the classics but must be served in three times and still at the right temperature
  17. Finally if you want an alternative to Guinness there are the Murphy and Beamish beers.