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New York Post
Hey, There's More To U.S. Beer Than Bud, And These Latin Cervezas Go .... Beyond Corona
By TOM TOPOUSIS
December 10, 2003
LATIN America is a beer-brewing paradise. Now, thanks to free trade, New Yorkers can get a taste of the light, crisp lagers and dark beers that have been quenching thirsts south of the border for more than a century.
We say century, because it wasnt until the end of the 19th century that the arrival of German brewers jump-started Latin Americas love of modern, European-style beer.
Forget Corona - the most popular Latin beers are light and breezy, a perfect palate-cleansing match for those flavorful foods.
Heres a sampling of some of the best of the bunch available in New York.
Most of the beer imports are available at better beverage distributors or bodegas and range in price from $6 to $8 for a six-pack.
Marketed as the "Gold of the Incas," Cusquena lager is a light but flavorful beer brewed high in the Andes Montains in the ancient city of Cusco. Befitting its heritage, this pilsener-style beer is a rich and golden color.
Negra Modelo, one of Mexicos finest beers, is a Vienna-style lager with a slight malty sweetness and a hint of chocolate.
Modelo is a nice break from the signature light, bubbly "beach" brews.
The leading beer in the Dominican Republic, this is a Pilsener thats more like Heineken or Becks than Corona. Presidente delivers a full flavor that stands on its own, with or without a meal. Legend has it that its much stronger in Sto. Domingo.
This is a pale lager with more flavor than the typical mass-produced beer brewed in the United States. Dont be fooled by the cheap-looking label -
Suprema is supreme and far more robust than most of its slickly packaged Latin lager cousins.
The only beer made in Puerto Rico thats shipped to the mainland, Tesoro is a brand-new Puerto beer that is Rico a light and dry. Tesoro pours from its clear bottle with a foamy head that hangs around for a while. A winner for those who prefer light lagers.
Yes, its another light lager, as are 90 percent of the beers brewed in Latin America. But Quilmes, described as Argentinas most popular beer, has a refreshing, clean flavor that makes this brew surprisingly delcious.
One of the best and, certainly, the most distinctive brew from Latin America, Xingu is a "black beer," dark and rich with a thick brown head and an aroma of coffee and chocolate. After a brief absence, Xingu is set to return to New York stores this month.