Whilst in Biarritz, I went beer hunting. I was actually after some Akerbeltz, as I’d spotted an advert for their brewery in the tourist office. However, they couldn’t be bothered to respond to my email to tell me where to find the stuff, so I had an amusing afternoon going into every wine shop and off-licence that was open and baffling the locals with my quest for more biere artisanale. More fun that way, and I found a couple of other basque products instead.
Firstly, the intriguingly titled “Etxeko Bob’s beer” — unfiltered, unpasteurised etc.. The brewery is just outside Bayonne, and has a half-built website here. The beer itself was inoffensive but not that exciting. Quite a lot like the other beers I had in the south of France that I generalised about yesterday. That said, I had shaken it up quite a lot before drinking it, so I probably wasn’t drinking it in peak condition.
I was expecting Oldarki Patxaran beer to be revolting – it is beer mixed with Patxaran, a basque spirit made from sloe berries. However, it was actually very tasty. It wasn’t particularly sweet, just fruity and very refreshing. It was copper-red coloured, with a light body. It reminded me a little bit of Meantime’s Raspberry beer, but also of a strawberry beer I had in Belgium once (but not as sickly). Very hard to pin down the flavour – as their website says,
“it is a very specific beverage and can’t be compared to any other beer; the Patxaran-based recipe is exclusive”
I’m not a huge fruit beer fan, but I really liked this.