These are the European beers you should drink while watching each Euro 2016 team
The Euros are *almost* upon us which means a month of football, friendly sweepstakes (which often involve rooting for a country you barely know) and filling your fridge with beer.
So we’ve pulled together some suggestions, with the help of beer sommelier Sophie Atherton, for great international beers you should be drinking that come from each of the 24 countries playing.
There are ales, lagers, bitters, craft, stouts, wheat – whatever might tickle your fancy. Many can be found in pubs, supermarkets or bottle shops, with the more specialist ones for the serious beer buffs easy to get your hands on online.
Now you just have to pick a side for the group stages…
What beer? Birra Korca
Why? The first beer brewed in Albania, and many say the best. The blond ale is sharp, fairly strong and slightly sweet.
What beer? Kronenbourg 1664
Why? It’s refreshingly crisp and light and is just that bit nicer than some of the other mass-produced lagers.
What beer? Ground Zero Morning Glory
Why? This American-style IPA is the hoppiest that hops can be, resulting in a citrus and pine taste sensation.
What beer? Feldschlosschen
Why? This beer is well balanced and not particularly complex so is perfect for a session with pals.
What beer? Hogs Back Three Hogs
Why? This small Surrey-based brewery has whipped up a golden ale just for the Euros. Described as “a beer of two halves”, it’s hoppy at first followed by a sweeter finish. Or you could go for its flagship brew which is called TEA (can you get any more English, really?)
What beer? Baltika
Why? Russia’s second largest brewing company has a lot to offer. Try No 7 for a fresh fruity lager or No 6 for a dark smooth (stronger) porter.
What beer? ERB Weizen
Why? This wheat beer is fairly dense but the notes of banana and cloves make it surprisingly comforting.
What beer? Tiny Rebel Cwtch
Why? This zesty little number is a modern take on the best bitter. Its unique blend of fruit and chocolate, with hints of liquorice, saw it crowned Champion Beer of Britain 2015.
What beer? Bitburger
Why? It’s got everything a decent beer should â€“ a good head, nice colour and crisp taste. It is Germany’s number one draft, after all.
What beer? Whitewater Copperhead
Why? This Belfast 3.7% bitter was created with a session in mind. Think a touch of apricot with a suitably tart finish.
What beer? Tyskie
Why? Good bodied and surprisingly smooth, this beer goes down a treat.
What beer? Lvivske Premium
Why? Another easy drinking pale lager ideal for the warm weather. It’s fairly sour so balance things out with some strong (not salty) cheeses.
What beer? Ozujsko
Why? It’s sweet and refreshing and basically demands to be enjoyed outdoors. It also comes in fruit flavours (the lemon is delicious) if you need sweetening up any more.
What beer? Pilsner Urquell
Why? The original Pilsner. It’s clean, clear, slightly bitter and mildly carbonated. Best enjoyed on ice cold draft.
What beer? Estrella
Why? Golden and hoppy, this beer makes you want to be outdoors right now.
What beer? Efes Pilsener
Why? A dry and light drink, with a fair bit of fizz. One you can’t really go wrong with.
What beer? Delirium Tremens
Why? This blond beer is a delightful mix of fruits and spice (plus the bottle just looks so great). At 8.5% though it’s perhaps more of a one-off.
What beer? Birra Moretti
Why? This golden beer has a subtle taste and just the right amount of carbonation. Enjoy with a massive pizza like a true Italian.
Republic of Ireland
What beer? Guinness
Why? Because, come on, it would be rude not to. Maybe go Golden Ale if you don’t fancy a pint of the black stuff.
What beer? Omnipollo Noa Pecan Mud Cake
Why? A roasty chocolatey imperial stout from an award-winning brewery. The sweet flavours and the ABV (11% – yikes) mean it’s more of a treat beer.
What beer? Stiegl Pils
Why? This pale pilsner is simple, light and tastes of sweet honey. Forget clean eating, this is clean drinking.
What beer? Horizont Sorok
Why? A great floral IPA with a great story behind it. All its beers are lovingly crafted by young trainee Hungarian brewers.
What beer? Einstok
Why? The cool, sharp packaging of the white ale reflects the citrus notes inside cutting through the wheat. Alternatively, the Toasted Porter is beautifully rich with notes of chocolate and berries.
What beer? Super Bock
Why? This lightly apple-scented lager should be widely available in pubs this summer, with kegs and bottles of the stuff being specially imported.