I recently had the pleasure of spending two glorious weeks cruising the Caribbean. Having just emerged from Icelandic winter hibernation, the soothing sensation of bright sunshine, warm trade winds and appealing sea temperatures was unbeatable; just what the doctor ordered following a winter of almost non stop low pressure fronts and northerly winds renowned for freezing smiles 10 times more efficiently than a botox needle!
Alongside spending time ashore lazing on idyllic beaches and swimming in the azure blue seas, I also spent quite a bit of time sampling local brews. (Not tea, I might add..)
Like many of my fellow Caribbean cruisers, I normally reach for a rum punch or a pina colada figuring ‘when in Rome’ … after all, isn’t this what the Caribbean is all about?! Rum, rum and more rum!
However it was our cabin steward that changed all that when one morning as when we were leaving our ‘stateroom’ (posh word for cabin) he cheerfully called out ‘have a Banks Beer for me won’t you!’
How could we possibly refuse?
And so followed a pattern. At every new island destination we made a point of sampling the local brew. And what a revelation it was! I had no idea there were so many different brands to sample. And so without further ado – here’s my personal round up of the Caribbean’s top hop tipples and some useful links to get the party started!
Aruba – Balashi
Barbados – Banks
Haiti – Prestige
Bahamas – Sands
Dominica – Kubuli. Website down at the momento but you can find them on FaceBook here
Jamaica – Red Stripe
Cozumel – Corona
Trinidad & Tobago – Stag
These really are listed as a way of getting you started and excited about incorporating something a little different into your next Caribbean cruise time ashore. Yes, the rums are great but don’t shy away from the local beers, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the variety on offer. And they are not all lager types (my preference) there are many stouts and ‘dark’ varieties to be found too. There are also a growing number of micro breweries to be found on various islands – offering all sorts of different tastes and varieties.
Also note that some of the breweries offer tours of their establishments too.
Just be sure to get back to the ship in time!
Funny how time flies when you are having fun…