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  1. Belgium – I don’t know I’d call those two THE top, but they are certainly right up there. Leffe is very nice, as is Kwak (best beer glass, period), Delirium Tremens (be careful, the name tells you all you need to know) and my personal favorite, Orval. Then again, we sampled something like 25 different beers in like 7 or 8 days in Belgium, and I can’t recall any I would not recommend, so just give them a try!

  2. In France – not all regions are famous for their wines. The north (around Lille) and to some extend the east are definitely beer regions – the proximity with Belgium and Germany helps, but they also have a great variety of excellent local beers. And, yes, the stuff is quite potent!

  3. In Poland, you have to try a vodka called Zbrowka (apologies for spelling). You mix it with apple juice (it’s the only vodka you can mix without getting shot) and it tastes dangerously like pop.

    The name translates roughly as little bison, and every bottle of Zbrowka has a blade of grass in it from the Eastern steppes of Poland. The story is that the European Bison wee on the grass, which gets added to the vodka. That accounts for the slightly off colour and the tang in the taste! Not sure about the hangover the day after ….

  4. I hope you didn’t steal this idea from my latest blog post. 🙂

    If in Czech Republic, I must prefer Gambrinus which is available almost everywhere. Staropramen is a good choice as well, although quite potent.

    I’m not a fan of Duvel (we call it Devil) nor Chimay. Instead I always opt for Leffe or Karmeliet. But I never turn down a Belgian brew, regardless.

    Cheers!

  5. Yes, needless to say Pilsner Urquel is the most famous Czech brew worldwide but there are many breweries there, most in business for well over hundred years and of no lesser quality. In fact some would argue that Budvar (the original Budwiser) as well as may be the Velkopopovicky Kozel and dozen other brands may be superior to Pilsner. Let’s face it, beer drinking is Czech national pastime, and statistically they lead ahead of the Belgians and the Germans in consumption per capita, young and old, women, even infants included…

  6. I’d have to say that I am a fan of Chimay — especially Chimay blue (sorry, Andy!). And Budvar … tastes like a very good beer unlike some budweisers we could mention. I’m with you, Travel Inspirations, go the Budvar.

  7. There’s so much more drinking to be done out here in Spain other than the typical Sangrias and Riojas. From the lowly Calimocho (Coke and cheap wine) to the Aguardientes of Galicia and the Licor de Hierbas after meals, to the strong Pitarra wine out here in Extremadura. Spain is definitely a country where you can ‘drink locally’ and never get bored.

  8. What about Sherry from Jerez in Spain; and surely you can’t not have Guiness from Ireland in your top 5 – it does not taste that good anywhere else in the world.

    I love Pastis and Port – and try the white Port chilled before dinner, and also a variant called Lagrima.