Friday, June 1, 2012

Holding Pattern

You might have noticed the blog has gone a bit quieter of late, if you've been bored enough to check.  Well, I've been in Turkey.

Turkey is fantastic.  I really can't say enough about it.  Modern enough to offer great transportation & infrastructure, different enough to be interesting, and full of history.  The food is natural, wholesome, oh-so-satisfying and cheap.  And the people are friendly and helpful.  Having a great time here.

Then there's the beer situation.

You have the usual international options - primarily Tuborg, along with Heineken, Becks & other identical beers, along with a couple of different big names wherever Germans vacation (Leffe, etc.).  But if you were hoping for some local Turkish beer, you basically have one option:

Efes has completely cornered the domestic beer market - it is EVERYWHERE.  For 99.999% of visitors, it's the only Turkish beer they'll see.  It's a standard American/International pale lager, though it says "Pilsen" on the bottle.  (It is not a pilsener.)  No flavour to speak of, apart from a pronounced tendency to go quite stale within minutes of opening/pouring - which is why I've been drinking it from the can when I drink it at all (less opportunity for the beer to mix with oxygen than pouring into a glass).

For my return to Istanbul, I might make use of this handy guide to beer and pubs in Istanbul, though options are slim at best.  However, an attempt to visit perhaps (one of) the only craft brewpub(s) in the country might be in order.  Until then, I'll try to focus on more promising local drinking options, such as strong sweet tea, and this:

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