When you think of the best Mexican beers on the market, iconic brands like Corona and Modelo might immediately come to mind. However, there is an extensive selection of beer from Mexico that boasts rich flavors and refreshing aromas, making them perfect accompaniments to your favorite meals or even to enjoy on a sunny day.
You may already be familiar with some of these brands, while others might be hidden gems just waiting to be discovered.
Mexican breweries have a long tradition that dates back to the early 20th century with classic lagers. Today, they continue experimenting with flavors to create craft beers that entice casual drinkers and connoisseurs alike.
You’ll notice there’s a sense of pride and culture embedded in these brews, offering an authentic taste of Mexico to be savored and enjoyed.
So, let’s dive and explore some of the best Mexican beers you should try. As your knowledge of these tasty beverages begins to expand, you might find that perfect bottle to add a Mexican flair to your next celebration or casual get-together with friends. Cheers!
A Brief History of Mexican Beer
The history of Mexican beer dates back to the Spanish conquest of the Aztec Empire. Before the 16th century, Mesoamerican cultures knew of fermented alcoholic beverages, including a corn beer. However, European-style beer brewed with barley was introduced to Mexico with the arrival of Hernán Cortés and the Spanish invasion.
As you explore the world of Mexican beers, you’ll find that German immigrants played a significant role in shaping the industry. In the late 19th century, Mexican beer production grew and flourished, with many brewers adopting German brewing techniques and styles.
One notable brewery that emerged during this time was Cervecería Modelo, founded in 1925. With popular brands like Modelo Especial and Corona Extra, this brewery has become a staple in the Mexican beer market and worldwide.
Another well-known Mexican beer is Pacifico, which gets its name from Cervecería del Pacifico, where it was first brewed by Germans. It has a pale color, mild sweetness, and a lower alcohol content of 4.5%, making it appropriate for day drinking.
Here’s a quick glance at some popular Mexican beers:
- Corona Extra
- Modelo Especial
Popular Mexican Beer Styles
In this section, we’ll explore some popular Mexican beer styles that you might want to try. We’ll dive into Mexican Lagers, Pilsners, Vienna-Style Lagers, Ales, and Craft Beers.
Mexican Lagers are a staple in the beer world, known for their light and crisp flavors. These beers are perfect for warm weather and pair well with various foods. Here are some popular Mexican Lagers:
- Corona Extra: A classic Mexican Lager with a smooth taste
- Sol Cerveza: A refreshing and light-bodied beer
- Estrella Jalisco: A crisp Lager with a clean finish
Pilsners are another well-loved beer style in Mexico due to their refreshing, easy-to-drink flavor profile. Here are a few notable Pilsners from Mexico:
- Tecate: A popular Pilsner with a balanced and smooth taste
- Carta Blanca: An American-style Lager with Pilsner characteristics and a 4.5% ABV
Vienna-Style Lagers are a bit more unique, as they originated in Austria but are still embraced in Mexico. Their amber color and medium body characterize these Lagers. They usually have a malty sweetness with a hint of hops. Some popular Vienna-Style Lagers from Mexico include:
- Dos Equis: A versatile and flavorful beer with caramel notes
- Noche Buena: A seasonal beer with a malty and slightly sweet taste
While not as common as Lagers and Pilsners in Mexico, Ales can still be found, particularly within the craft beer scene. These beers can be more robust and flavorful compared to other styles. A couple of Mexican Ales to consider are:
- Cerveza Fauna: A brewery with various Ale styles, such as India Pale Ales (IPAs) and Stouts
- Stout De Olla: A rich dark Ale with chocolate and coffee flavors
The Mexican craft beer scene has grown in recent years, offering more variety and unique flavors for beer enthusiasts. Some noteworthy craft beer options include:
- Cervecería Insurgente: Known for their experimental and innovative brews
- Agua Mala: A brewery offering various beer styles, from Ales to Lagers
- Border Psycho: A brewery with a diverse range of beer offerings, including IPAs and Stouts
These craft breweries and others are pushing the boundaries of traditional Mexican beer styles, making it an exciting time to explore the world of Mexican beverages.
Best Mexican Beers
Corona Extra likely comes to mind first when you think of Mexican beer. This light, refreshing lager is perfect for warm days and beach parties. Enjoy the clear glass bottle’s crisp, clean taste with a wedge of lime.
Modelo Especial is a popular Mexican pilsner-style beer with a fuller flavor than Corona. This beer gives off a touch of elegance with its distinctive gold foil wrapping. Pair it with spicy foods and flavorful dishes.
Pacifico is a tried-and-true choice for fans of Mexican lagers. This easy-drinking beer has a slight maltiness and low bitterness, making it an excellent option for various occasions.
Tecate, a light lager from the border town of the same name, has a crisp and refreshing taste. This budget-friendly beer is perfect for casual gatherings and can be enjoyed with a slice of lime to enhance its flavor.
This crisp, golden lager is perfect for hot afternoons and outdoor barbecues. Sol has been brewed since 1899 and maintains a light profile with a subtle hint of citrus. It’s an excellent choice for those who prefer a lighter beer that’s not too hoppy.
Dos Equis offers two different beers, Lager Especial, and Amber, to cater to other preferences. Lager Especial is a light, crisp, and refreshing golden lager, while Amber is a Vienna-style brew with a more prosperous, maltier profile.
Bohemia is a premium Mexican beer that offers several styles, including the traditional pilsner, wheat, and a chocolate stout. The classic pilsner boasts a sophisticated flavor with floral hops and a slightly bitter finish.
Victoria is a Vienna-style lager with a smooth, malty taste and a hint of caramel. Its amber color and clean finish make it an excellent pairing for Mexican cuisine.
For a darker, more decadent option, try Negra Modelo. This Munich-style Dunkel lager has a slightly sweet, malty flavor with notes of caramel and chocolate. It’s perfect for those who enjoy a more robust beer.
Originally hailing from Guadalajara, Estrella Jalisco is a refreshing, light lager known for its crisp taste and smooth finish. While Jalisco is famous for its agave distillates, this beer proves that the region can make a great brew, too.
Mexican Beer Brands and Breweries
Mexican beer has become increasingly popular, with a variety of options appealing to everyone’s taste. Let’s dive into some notable Mexican beer brands and breweries.
Grupo Modelo is a giant in the world of Mexican beer. You might recognize their flagship beer, Corona Extra, as it is arguably Mexico’s most famous beer. In addition to Corona, Grupo Modelo produces other well-known brands such as Modelo and Pacifico.
Heineken may not be a Mexican brewery, but they play a significant role in the country’s beer market. Heineken owns and distributes several popular Mexican beers, including Tecate, Sol, and Dos Equis.
Cervecería Minerva is a craft brewery based in Jalisco, known for its dedication to quality, with unique offerings such as Minerva Stout and Minerva Pale Ale. As a beer enthusiast, it is interesting how they incorporate regional flavors in their brews.
Cervecería de Baja California (Cucapá) is another craft brewery based in Mexicali that has gained prominence in the Mexican beer scene. Cucapá has a diverse portfolio of beers, including the famous Chupacabras Pale Ale and La Migra Imperial Stout.
Cervecería Insurgente hails from Tijuana and has quickly become one of the most respected breweries in the country. They focus on producing high-quality beers with intriguing flavor profiles, such as their Insurgente IPA and Nocturna Black IPA.
Here is an overview of the breweries mentioned above:
|Grupo Modelo||Mexico City||Corona Extra, Modelo, Pacifico|
|Heineken||Global||Tecate, Sol, Dos Equis|
|Cervecería Minerva||Jalisco||Minerva Stout, Minerva Pale Ale|
|Cervecería de Baja California (Cucapá)||Mexicali||Chupacabras Pale Ale, La Migra Imperial Stout|
|Cervecería Insurgente||Tijuana||Insurgente IPA, Nocturna Black IPA|
We hope you will enjoy sampling some of these brews that we consider to be the best Mexican beers on the market, and don’t be shy to explore different Mexican beers and breweries, as this county has a rich history in brewing and makes some of the world’s most enjoyable beers. Cheers!
P.S. If you like making your own beer, grab our gift of Big Robb’s top 5 favorite beer recipes from his brewery; details are on the side of the blog or at the bottom if you are on your phone.