Lonely Planet Writer

Where is the best beer in the world?

Tony Wheeler with Pilsen in Santa Fe de Antioquia, Colombia, 2008

What would you consider to be the top 10 beers from around the world? That's what Lonely Planet staffer Adam Noonan wanted to know (he was planning a bit of a global beer-tasting party) so he posed this question to the rest of the company.

From the flurry of responses that ensued, it's fair to say beer is something very close to our hearts (and hands). The beer nuts weighed in with mentions of perplexingly named brews like Wychwood Hobgoblin, Mikeller Beer Geek Breakfast and Dogfish Head 90 Minute Imperial IPA.

There was a lot of mention of trips to places being incomplete without a pint of the local brew ('No trip to Scotland for me could ever be made without a pint of Tennents or Belhaven's Best' claims staffer Craig Powell) and how your destination can influence your choice of beer - an icy Tsingtao is a treat on a muggy day in Beijing, but it might not hit the spot in sub-zero London where a heartier brew goes down so much better.

But Lonely Planet co-founder Tony Wheeler came back with a knockout list of beers he associated most closely with a place. So, pull up a seat, order a cold one and check out (in no particular order):

Tony Wheeler's top 10 beers of the world

  1. Kingfisher – although Cobra beer also has a following from India and once upon a time Rosy Pelican was the beer you used to search out in India.
  2. Peroni Nastro Azzurro – Italy
  3. Kronenbourg 1664 – France
  4. Dos Equis – Mexico (since we have 4X in Australia and this is 2X, is there a 3X somewhere in the world?)
  5. South Pacific Lager – PNG
  6. Hinano – Tahiti
  7. Tusker – the beer you'd drink in the Thorn Tree Café in Nairobi, Kenya
  8. Red Stripe – Jamaica and the Caribbean
  9. Beer Lao – Laos
  10. Bintang Baru – of course for Indonesia. Maureen and I had just got off the plane in Bali in 2003 and look what we saw...

So, where have you had your best beer?