Thailand Tips #2: Best Beer

Liquid heaven in bottled form.
Liquid heaven in bottled form.

Personally my all-time favorite beer isn’t from Thailand, it’s “Beer Lao Dark” which god must make in Laos because there’s no way such an amazing beer comes from Asia. You can find some Beer Laos regular and dark in bars in Thailand but sometimes the flavor isn’t so great because it was transported in non-air conditioned trucks. The flavor dies in the heat. Best to get it at Chong Mek Border – the Beer Laos Brewery is within a few kilometers of the border and the beer is great tasting.

Beer Lao is imported to the states in Massachusetts and California. Finding a bar that has it might be a chore. Here’s the Beer Lao website >

Thailand expats seem to drink Heineken (Thailand brewed), Singha, Leo, and Tiger beers the most. Out of these I’d say Leo is the best of the bunch.

Beer Chang draft has been exceptional on occasion and again, I guess this relates to whether it was subjected to high heat in transit from the place of origin to the bar I’m drinking it at.

Similar to Corona Light in the states… there is some that tastes heavenly, and some that tastes and smells like they used toilet water to brew it – which I think is what happens when it sits in the sun for a few hours or days. Or weeks.

Thai Beer: My 9 Favorites

I started missing my favorite beer here in Thailand and thought I would write a quick post about my favorites. I don’t really drink Thai beer here much since I can’t get my true favorite – Corona Light with about an 1/8th cup of lemon juice squirted into it from one of the bottles of lemon juice.

Yes I know, I don’t have a good appreciation for beer… Corona Light tastes like water… yeah, even more so when I dilute it with so much lemon juice…

Least favorite beer in Thailand…

Starts with a K – and I’ve only had it when I’m with others who like it – I think it sucks. Sucks so much I can’t remember the name. I think it’s German though.

Thai beer: Tiger – I’ll never drink again.

Thai beer: Leo – I’ve had a few large bottles of this – once when the only store open had lost it’s power and Leo was the only thing they had cold in the refrigerator. It’s bearable.

Thai beer: Chang This one – is at times OK and at times just horrible. It’s probably me – as the beer shouldn’t change too much. It might be whether or not the beer got overly hot and it had the taste destroyed. Sometimes it’s bearable and sometimes better than Leo. Sometimes same. Sometimes even worse and I have to spit after drinking it. I can really taste the alcohol when it’s bad – it’s like formaldehyde or something. It’s like SOJU in Korea at times.

Thai beer: Chang Draft. (Draught). This one was quite good one night as I ate alone and drank almost 2 pitchers of it. Yes I was in the mood for beer… but still, this one had a great taste that night. I’ve had it one other time by draught and it was nothing spectacular.

Thai beer: Singha Singha is OK if I can’t get anything else. At times I’ll even pick it out over the others I like more, but not too often. Singha Light is OK – and sometimes GREAT. I can like Singha a lot if it’s a big bottle of light and the taste is exceptional – as it’s been on occasion.

Heineken. What can I say. 11th grade in the states and my first 7 bottles of beer and I was NOT sick the next morning. Heineken is good for when you know you might drink a LOT… I don’t know why, but I don’t feel it much the next day. The taste is OK – kind of a non-tasting beer.

San Miguel and San Miguel Light. Not sure where this comes from. I’ve first had it here in Thailand. Obviously it’s not Thai beer. This is usually quite good. Can’t say I’ve had a bad bottle.

Numero UNO Thai Beer???? Is not Thai at all – it’s LAOS. Beer Laos. Beer Laos regular and Beer Laos Dark are very nice beers for me. I had the dark just before I moved away from Isaan and now I’ve not found it anywhere – even since they started letting Beer Laos into Thailand in limited venues. Maybe moving back to Isaan someday and really, truly looking forward to a monthly run to the border to get Beer Laos – both regular and dark on a continually recurring basis!

Man, when I just went to the beer-lao site and saw these photos – I had a little spittle running down the corner of my mouth. I just finished a pizza and to top off the night with an ice cold Beer Laos would have been amazing. My g/f knows I love it so much that she actually had someone GO to Laos, get a 6 pack and send it to me by MAIL. I got this box at Christmas and it was heavy. I didn’t open it at the post office. When I got home I couldn’t believe – someone mailed Beer Laos through the post system! In America I think someone’d go to jail! Anyway… thank Buddha we’re not in America any longer…

Update 1/2011: Since I can’t regularly get BeerLao I now drink iced Leo beer. It’s really the best one over time. Sure not everyone will agree, but it has a nice taste that is pretty consistent. I have had a couple of bad bottles, but out of a hundred or so that I’ve had in 6 years – that’s not a big deal. Try Leo Beer in Thailand!

So – these are my favorite beers… what are YOURS?

Beer Laos Dark: The best Thai Beer!Beer Laos Lager: Also the Best Thai Beer!