Join Duniakagyan on a whirlwind tour into the world of beer to explore its intriguing origins, benefits, variants, and the top beer brands in India. It’s your sneak peek into all things beer.
Beer comes across as the most beloved beverage, after water and tea. But if you think beer is just a popular drink, think again. It’s, rather, a product of art, science, and craftsmanship. With a rich and fascinating history dating back to ancient civilizations, beer has shaped cultures and traditions the world over. And, to this day, beer continues to define how we socialize, celebrate, and unwind. Beer brewing is an art form unto itself with craft breweries taking the brewing process to the next level.
Global Beer Trends in 2021: The Rise of Beer Brands in India
As of 2021, the world drinks around 185.60 million kiloliters of beer a year. To put that in perspective, the quantity is enough to fill the Tokyo Dome about 150 times. While beer is a global beverage, some countries consume more beer than the rest. Take, for example, China, where the consumption is 9.5 million gallons yearly. Given the population of 1.4 billion, it’s easy to guess why. But when it comes to per capita consumption, China ranks nowhere with per-person consumption at meager 25.1 Litres.
The USA ranks second on the list of biggest beer-slurping countries with a total yearly consumption of 24, 710 thousand kilos. Here, 35% of Americans who consume alcohol prefer beer. Brazil, Russia, Mexico, Germany, the United Kingdom, Japan, Vietnam, and Spain are the next top 8 beer-drinking countries. When it comes to India, it is placed 14th with a total beer consumption of 2,160 thousand kilometers per year. However, the consumption was up by 28.2% as compared to 2020.
As the stats suggest, the beer market in India is increasing rapidly. That creates an opportunity for global companies and local breweries to offer some of their finest creations and drive revenue. Let’s introduce a caveat. With brands comes variety. And, with variety, it’s hard to choose something that suits your mood, taste, and pocket. Whether you’re a casual beer enthusiast or curious to learn more about this iconic beverage, join us on a refreshing journey into the captivating world of beer.
We have put together a list of the top beer brands in India to help you choose wisely. But before delving deep into that, let’s first deal with the basics of beer. Without any further ado, let’s start.
What is Beer?
Beer is a brewed and fermented alcoholic drink made from malted barley, maize, water, and yeast. To enhance the taste, they flavor it with hops. Based on the amount of alcohol present in the beer, you can categorize it into three main categories – light beer (4-5% alcohol), moderate beer (5-7% alcohol), and strong beer (7-8%+ alcohol). We also have classifications based on styles & flavors. Usually served chilled, beer is ideal for social gatherings, celebrations, and casual enjoyment.
Types of Beer: What Beer Brands in India Have on Offer
Beer comes in various styles and flavors, ranging from light and crisp lagers to dark and rich stouts. It can have different levels of alcohol content, carbonation, and bitterness, offering a wide range of taste experiences. Here are some of the sought-after types of beers based on their styles & flavors.
As one of the most consumed beers, Lager delivers a tidy and crisp taste. This light-bodied beer is a result of fermentation and conditioning under cooler conditions, usually between 9 and 15 °C.
It’s a darker variant of beer that oozes roasted malt flavors with a dash of chocolate or coffee, and a creamy texture. Stout also offers a wide range of tastes, from dry & bitter to sweet & smooth.
Unlike Lager, the production of Ales involves yeast fermentation at warmer temperatures. When it comes to flavors, aromas, and colors, Ales could be anything – light or dark, or even fruit-flavored.
It’s basically a Lager, as tidy and crisp in taste but paler in complexion. The golden-hued beer strikes a perfect balance between the sugariness of malt and the harshness of hop. Also, it offers more fizz.
A popular dark beer, Porter has a complex flavor profile and a fuller body. You will appreciate the roasted flavor of malt, alongside hints of chocolate, coffee, and caramel a typical Porter has on offer.
With an intricate flavor profile, Saison comes across as a popular Ale variant. If you prefer fruity and spicy flavors and high carbon content, this Belgian farmhouse Ale would exceed your expectations.
The medium-bodied beer gets its name from its reddish-brown color. In it, the sugariness of malt overpowers the bitterness of hops, leading to a smooth & sugary flavor. So, it’s perfect for starters.
As the name says, it comes with a greater proportion of wheat than malted barley. Usually, it is light, fruit-and spice-flavored, quenching in nature, fuzzy-looking, and delivers a creamy mouthfeel.
If your idea of a beer is bitter, acidic taste, then these beers are for you. You can trace its taste to the bacterial action during fermentation. Some beer brands in India age them in wooden barrels.
IPA (India Pale Ale):
Let the intense hop flavors and aromas blow you off your feet. IPAs often come with a higher alcohol content, light amber to golden hues, and rich maltiness that brings down the hoppy bitterness a bit.
How to Drink Beer? What Beer Brands in India Suggest
A glass in your hand and a bottle of beer can swing your mood, relax your senses, and even help you stay healthy. As the alcohol content is low in most beers, you can drink it in its existing form without mixing water, soda, or any other liquids. However, beer pairs well with several liquids, including soda, fruit juices, hot sauces, margaritas, cider, tequila, syrups, nectars, and more. So, you have plenty of flavors to experiment with when it comes to beer-based cocktails. Your top options include:
Just add lemonade to beer, and you will have Shandy, a refreshing beverage ideal for summer.
How about enjoying beer like a Mexican? While beer is the base, you can add lime juice, sauces, and spices in optimal quantities to come up with Michelada. You’ll love it’s tangy and refreshing flavor.
3. Black and Tan:
If you crave a double-tone cocktail, here you have it. Half-fill a glass with pale ale, lager, or any other light beer, and then pour stout or other dark beer into it. The contrasting flavors will blow your mind.
It’s a fruity cocktail that resembles a Shandy. And, it’s simple to prepare as well. Just add fruit juice to your beer and here you go. You can even consider replacing fruit juice with a citrus-flavored soda.
Finding it difficult to choose between a margarita and a beer? Here’s a combination of both, as the name suggests. Herein, you just create a concoction of beer, tequila, lime juice, and syrup.
When you blend equal parts beer and cider, you get a Snakebite. The malty and hoppy flavor of a beer combines with the crisp and fruity elements of cider to create a unique taste experience.
Know the Drill:
Whichever cocktail works for you but it’s advisable to drink in moderation. Here’s how to drink it.
You can either slurp beer directly from the bottle in which it comes or in a beer glass or mug. We, however, recommend using a beer glass to savor the beer flavors and aromas to the fullest.
- You need to create about 1-inch to 1-½ inch of foamy stuff. To this end, you should pour the beer into the glass at a 45-degree angle. Otherwise, you end up generating more froth than required.
- Once poured, take a whiff of its aroma before taking your first sip. However, don’t swallow it until you soak in the flavors & aromas that the beer has to offer. Again, enjoy beer but responsibly.
Benefits of Drinking Beer
If consumed in moderation, beer can be a healthy drink. Here’s why.
- Beer is a nutritious drink as it contains antioxidants, vitamin B, minerals, and protein. That’s because it has cereal grains and yeast as its main ingredients. In addition, beer contains calcium, iron, phosphates, and even fiber.
- Beer helps prevent kidney stones because it contains a lot of hops. For instance, pale ales are rich in phytochemicals that promote kidney health.
- Drinking beer in moderate amounts is good for the heart. Various studies indicate that those who drink beer are less likely to suffer from heart attacks than those who don’t.
- Beer lowers ‘bad’ cholesterol (LDL). It contains soluble fiber, which promotes healthy blood sugar and blood cholesterol levels. However, as beer interferes with our body’s ability to absorb minerals and vitamins, it can also lessen the body’s ability to burn stored fat.
- Beer helps in the reduction of work-related stress or anxiety up to some extent if consumed in moderation.
- Beer strengthens bones as it is high in dietary silicon in orthosilicic acid (OSA) soluble form. It may help in the growth and development of bone and connective tissue. Also, beer drinking reduces the chances of osteoporosis, a bone-thinning disorder.
Note: Various studies by different institutes underline these health benefits but only if you consume beer in moderation. We at Duniakagyan do not encourage alcohol consumption in any form.
10 Top Beer Brands in India
Now let’s look at the top 10 best beer brands in India.
Beer Price List: Prices are subject to change
|Best Beer Brands||Price* (New Delhi)|
|Kingfisher- 500ML- Can||Starting at Rs 85|
|Carlsberg -500ML-Can||Starting at Rs 135|
|Tuborg -500ML-Can||Starting at Rs 100|
|Budweiser -500ML-Can||Starting at Rs 130|
|Foster’s -500ML-Can||Starting at Rs 100|
|Heineken -500ML-Can||Starting at Rs 110|
|Corona||Starting at Rs 110|
|Haywards -500ML-Can||Starting at Rs 100|
|Royal Challenge -500ML-Can||Starting at Rs 90|
|Miller -500ML-Can||Starting at Rs 155|
1. Kingfisher Premium Beer
Kingfisher is an Indian beer brewed by United Breweries Group, Bangalore. The brand was launched in 1978. With a market share of over 36% in India, it is also available in 52 other countries. Its well-established distribution makes it readily available anywhere. Kingfisher premium beer has an unusual clarity and an enjoyable bitter taste. It is one of those gentle beers that always gives you good vibes.
Price: 330ml beer cost Rs. 60/- and onwards
2. Carlsberg Beer
The Carlsberg Group is one of the world’s leading brewery groups today, with a large portfolio of beer and other beverage brands. The Indian market has given a secure place to this brand. Carlsberg’s tagline “Probably the best lager in the world” was created in 1973. Gradually, this familiar beer brand has set up eight more breweries in different places in India, bringing a strategic revolution in the beer market in India.
Price: 330ml beer cost Rs. 90/- and onwards
3. Tuborg Beer
Tuborg is a Danish brewing company founded in 1873 on a harbor in Hellerup, Denmark, north of Copenhagen. Since 1970, it has been part of the Carlsberg Group. Tuborg Green is a bottom-fermented lager beer. It’s brewed with lager malt, a slightly roasted, bright type of malt, which results in the well-known mild, fresh taste, and aroma of flowers and grain. Tuborg beer is medium-rich and lively with a moderate bitterness in the aftertaste.
Price: 330ml beer cost Rs. 55/- and onwards
Budweiser is among India’s top ten beer brands according to consumer choice. It is an American-style pale lager made by Anheuser-Busch, part of AB InBev. The taste is the best part about Budweiser, aka the King of Beers. It is a simple but delicious taste that is smooth and crisp every time. It tastes of grain and rice, not hops.
Price: 330ml beer cost Rs. 110/- and onwards
Foster’s Lager Beer is one of those beers with great taste. The first sip defines the beer; it has a striking taste of alcohol but just the right amount. The supreme taste relaxes and refreshes you. This beer brand was launched in India during the late ’90s and is another top choice for beer lovers in India. This beer is manufactured by a famous Australia-based company named Fosters SABMiller Group.
Price: 330ml beer cost Rs. 60/- and onwards
It is a pale lager beer with 5% alcohol by volume, produced by the Dutch brewing company Heineken International. Heineken beer is sold in a green bottle with a red star. Heineken is a famous beer brand across 170 countries worldwide and is widely accepted by consumers. It is also available in a can and a giant bottle.
Price: 330ml beer cost Rs. 90/- and onwards
7. Corona Beer
Corona Extra is a pale lager brewed in Mexico and owned by AB InBev, a Belgian firm. A wedge of lime or lemon is typically placed on the bottle’s neck to add tartness and flavor. Corona Extra is one of the most popular imported drinks in India and one of the most popular beers globally. This is one of India’s most popular imported foreign beers and the world’s most popular beer brand.
Price: 355ml beer cost Rs. 240/- and onwards
8. Haywards Beer
Despite having very popular desi and international products on the market, Haywards is featured as one of the strong contestants among beer brands in India. It produces beer under the international brewery manufacturer name SABMiller. It smells excellent and tastes malty or bready, with a distinct alcoholic breath lingering in the mouth.
Price: 650ml beer cost Rs. 130/- and onwards
Royal Challenge is one of India’s most popular beer brands, and it has won the hearts of discerning consumers. Challenge was initially manufactured by Shaw Wallace and launched in India in the early 1980s. Its long brew duration gives it a distinct, smooth taste and rich flavor. It has all the hallmarks of a great beer: a color that is golden honey, a smooth and crisp taste, and lace that sticks to the glass wall.
Price: 650ml beer cost Rs. 130/- and onwards
10. Miller Beer
Miller High Life was introduced in 1903 as the flagship beer of the Miller Brewing Company. It’s the essence of the American lager category, with its crisp, easy-drinking flavor. This is one of India’s cheapest beers. When compared to other brands, the Miller High Life is less harsh and a flawlessly smooth drink with a moderate alcohol level.
Price: 500ml beer cost Rs. 115/- and onwards
Beer as an alcoholic drink is one of the world’s oldest and most enjoyed drinks. In this article, we have discussed the 10 best beer brands in India. Go through the article, and choose the beer brand of your type based on budget, taste, and type. However, only light to moderate beer consumption may be linked to some health benefits. Excessive consumption may have adverse effects on your body. So drink moderately, and enjoy!
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