Culture

9 Craft Beers That Prove Mexican Ingredients Make Everything Better

When it comes to sabor, Mexican ingredients provide some of the most mouthwatering experiences on Earth. So it should come as no surprise that many craft beer brewers are incorporating those flavors into their beers for interesting results. If you’re a craft beer enthusiast looking for an excuse to drink (and who isn’t), here are a few beers that should satisfy your craving for delicious and traditional Mexican ingredients.

Border X Brewing: Horchata (Golden Stout)

BORDER X BREWING / INSTAGRAM

It’s already hard enough to turn down a horchata when it’s of the agua fresca variety, but San Diego’s Border X Brewing has figured out a way to turn the deliciousness up a notch or three. Though it carries a whopping 9.5 percent alcohol by volume content, the flavors of cinnamon, almonds, and vanilla really shine, leaving behind only a slight hoppy aftertaste. This is a great drink to chase away the summer heat.

Night Shift Brewing: Viva Habanera

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Usually when you eat something spicy, it’s nice to have a cold drink to help wash it all down. Well, Night Shift Brewing decided to kill two birds with one stone by incorporating habanero peppers into their beer, Viva Habanera. There’s also a nice hit of agave nectar, which may or may not take your mind off the fact that your tongue is on fire. This one definitely gives new meaning to the phrase “it burns when I pee.” Try at your own caution!

Flying Dog: Numero Uno Agave Cerveza

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If drinking hot peppers isn’t your thing, Flying Dog’s Numero Uno Agave Cerveza might be a nice compromise. Like Viva Habanera, this beer incorporates the sweet flavor of agave, but instead of hitting your taste buds with peppers, it adds flavors of lemon peel, making it about as refreshing as a margarita. Numero Uno also uses flaked maize to give it that “distinctive corn and cracker flavor traditionally found in Mexican lagers.”

Golden Road: Doña Neta

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Tamarind has been a staple in Mexican cuisine and candy for centuries, and now Los Angeles’ Golden Road Brewing has added it to their craft beer, Doña Neta. The beer’s tart recipe was submitted by Colorado Springs resident Jessica Fierro to the Beerland Competition, where it took the top prize. So for all you aspiring brewers looking for inspiration, Mexican ingredients might be the place to start!

READ: A List Of Latin American Cuisine That Isn’t For The Weak Stomach

WestFax Brewing Company: Cilantro Lime Ale

WESTFAX BREWING COMPANY / FACEBOOK

For many of us, cilantro is more than just a garnish. It’s the highlight of a dish, like pico de gallo (which I consider a dish). Sadly, there are those unfortunate souls out there who think cilantro tastes like soap (seriously). For those who can’t stomach cilantro, I’d advise they skip WestFax’s Cilantro Lime Ale. The dynamic duo of cilantro and lime make this one of the more refreshing summer beers out there. If you hate the flavor of cilantro, I feel you. But hey, that just means there’s more beer for the rest of us.

The Bruery: Share This: Mole

BREWBALLERS / INSTAGRAM 

Holy mole! Okay, now that that’s out of the way we can talk about The Bruery’s mole inspired beer. The beer, Share This: Mole, boasts some of the most inspired ingredients on this list: ancho chiles, chipotle peppers, cinnamon, vanilla and cacao nibs. The end result is a beer that is both savory and chocolatey. Not the kind of beer you chug at a party, but rather what you’d sip while eating some tamale pie. As a bonus, for every bottle they make, the brewer donates a dollar to the Free Wheelchair Mission.

Island Brewing Company: Avocado Honey Ale

RUNNING BEAR HOMEBREWS / FACEBOOK

It’s no secret that avocados have been en vogue for the last several years in the U.S. When we’re not eating them, we’re wearing them as face-masks or using them as foot moisturizers. Now, thanks to Carpinteria, California’s Island Brewing Company, we’re drinking them as well. Every year, the U.S. imports millions of metric tons of the delightful berry (yeah, avocados are berries) from Mexico, so this drink isn’t going anywhere, unless avocados suddenly go out of style. Yeah, right.

Odell Brewing: Green Coyote Tomatillo Sour

ODELL BREWING / YOUTUBE

Now here’s a beer for you health conscious drinkers out there. Odell Brewing’s Green Coyote Tomatillo Sour pulls from the “classic German-style Berliner Weisse” process and adds the delicate flavors of the tomatillo, which tastes kind of like a “sour kiwi.” Definitely the right beer for those looking to increase their daily intake of vegetables. Have a few of these, then go for your morning jog. Actually, don’t do that.

Shiner: Prickly Pear

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During the summers in Mexico, cacti sprout prickly pears to the delight of those in need of a refreshing treat. Shiner, which is based out of Texas, knows the small cactus fruit is a great way to beat the heat, which is why they they made their Prickly Pear beer their official beer of summer. Unfortunately Shiner didn’t make a batch this year, leaving many people to wonder whether it’s even summer.

READ: We Bet You Can’t Get A Perfect Score On This Latin American Beer Quiz

Any beers we forgot? Leave a comment below!

El Chapo’s Daughter Is Using His Name And Face to Launch A Beer Brand After She Launched A Fashion Line

Culture

El Chapo’s Daughter Is Using His Name And Face to Launch A Beer Brand After She Launched A Fashion Line

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It seems like everybody today is trying to get in on the alcohol business. Whether it’s The Rock with a new tequila brand or Ryan Reynolds buying a gin company, it seems to be all the rage right now that even “El Chapo” is getting his own line of beers. 

Say hello to the “El Chapo 701” brand run by Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman’s daughter Alejandrina Guzman Salazar, who also is behind a fashion and lifestyle company built around her jailed father’s brand. The new line of beer, called El Chapo Mexican Lager, was unveiled for the first time to the public on Jan. 14 at a fashion trade show in Guadalajara, Mexico. 

“It hasn’t been released for sale to the public yet. I just brought some to display,” spokeswoman Adriana Ituarte told AFP, as the beer line is currently still waiting on government approval to sell beer in Mexico. The alcohol displayed at the trade showed brown, black and white labeled craft beer bottles with the Sinaloa cartel leader’s infamous mustache face adorned on them. 

Alejandrina Guzman Salazar’s company is banking on the idea that people will want to buy craft beer, labeled and named after her infamous father, at bars and markets in Mexico. 

Beer lovers won’t have to break the bank either when it comes to purchasing the new line of beer which comes in at 70.10 pesos, or about $3.73, for a 355 ml bottle. There is also the name of the brand, “El Chapo 701” which has an interesting meaning behind it. The “701” is a reference to El Chapo’s place on the 2009 list of the world’s richest persons from Forbes magazine (estimated at $1 billion). 

The “El Chapo” beer is expected to have a large fan base due to the notoriety of the imprisoned drug cartel leader and a growing market for collectible celebrity alcoholic beverages like these. The company is hoping that, besides just the name and branding of the beer, fans will actually enjoy the drink and keep coming back to it.

“I don’t know if we take the label off and the beer is good if it’s going to sell,’  Ituarte told the Daily Mail. “But obviously the brand gives the plus of sale, we continue with the idea that we are selling and as long as the product is good, people buy it and like it.”

Ituarte said at the trade show that the product will be sold at bars throughout Mexico that also sell stock craft beer, a market that has flourished in Mexico City in recent years due to the growth of microbreweries. The lager was produced by La Chingonería, a Mexico City-based brewery company. 

“This is an artisanal beer, with 4 percent alcohol. This prototype is a lager, and it’s made up of malt, rice, and honey so it’s good,” Ituarte told Daily Mail. “And the idea is for it to be sold at bars that stock craft beer.”

This is not the first time that “El Chapo” has seen his name being cashed in on by his family. There has been a clothing and accessories line made in tribute of Guzman.

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Salazar’s company has already cashed in on her father’s name with a line of T items such as t-shirts, belts, purses, and jackets all adorned with imagery of Guzman and the 701 logo. The brand has been quite successful in under a year of going public which shows the power of “El Chapo’s” name. 

Salazar isn’t the only one getting in on the drug lord’s name. Last March Guzmán’s wife, Emma Coronel, launched a fashion and leisurewear line, licensed by her husband. “I’m very excited to start this project, which was based on ideas and concepts that my husband and I had years ago,” Coronel told CNN in a statement at the time of the launch. “It is a project dedicated to our daughters.”

These dedicated “El Chapo” brands show the notoriety and the power of his name when it comes to marketing. If this new beer line is anything like the clothing and accessories already released under his name, there is sure to be a market for this too. 

Guzman is currently serving a life sentence at a supermax prison in Colorado after being convicted on drug trafficking and weapons charges in 2019. El Chapo was forced to forfeit $12.6 billion as part of his punishment.

READ: California Man Is Using His Culture To Create Hilarious And Super Relevant Mexican Greet Cards

One Of Mexico’s Biggest Beer Brands Is In Hot Water After Using Guillermo Del Toro’s Art Work Without His Permission

Entertainment

One Of Mexico’s Biggest Beer Brands Is In Hot Water After Using Guillermo Del Toro’s Art Work Without His Permission

@redAMLOmexico / Twitter

Artists often take inspiration from the works of other artists. This happens across all forms of art, from playwriting to musical composition to poetry. It certainly happens in the visual arts as well, where artists will make references or even directly incorporate aspects of another artist’s work into their own. But reproducing and selling an artist’s works without his or her explicit consent, consists of copyright infringement. That’s kind of what Cerveza Victoria is looking at, after their ‘limited edition’ Guillermo del Toro beer collection dropped — without Del Toro’s approval. 

On today’s case of “Who approved this?,” Grupo Modelo —the large Mexican brewery that exports beers we all know and love, such as Corona, Modelo, Pacifico and Victoria— managed to anger one of the most beloved Mexicans in the world: Guillermo del Toro.

Cerveza Victoria, recently announced a beer can collection featuring three specially designed cans featuring the director’s face, and two of his iconic monsters; one from his acclaimed film “Pan’s Labyrinth,” the other from his Oscar winning picture “The Shape of Water.”

The cans, designed by illustrator Guy Davis, were to be sold in convenience stores in Mexico City, Jalisco, San Luis Potosí, Michoacán and México state.

Here’s where things turn sour. Guillermo del Toro called out Victoria, and Grupo Modelo, for using his image and those of his characters, without his permission.

‘The Shape of Water’ director tweeted at Cerveza Victoria on Thursday, and urged the company to donate all the profits raised from the sales of the beer collection to young students competing in math and robotics competitions. “Very poorly done, @VictoriaMX. These cans do not have my authorization, my consultation or my signature to use my image or my name . . .” he tweeted in Spanish.

But why, oh why, would a huge company such as Cerveza Victoria, follow through with such a massive marketing strategy like this without even asking the artist himself for his consent?

As it turns out, Victoria beer was one of the sponsors of Del Toro’s “At Home with my Monsters,” exhibition in Guadalajara, Mexico. The exhibit featured over 900 objects the Oscar-winning director used in the making of his films, such as costumes, notebooks, drawings and personal objects.

The exposition was on display at the University of Guadalajara Art Museum (MUSA) from June 1 to November 3 of this year, and we believe that perhaps this fact granted the beer maker, the liberties to run a whole collection of limited edition cans with the artist’s face and work emblazoned all over them — without expressly asking for his take on it, much less his permission.

The beer maker took to Twitter to “apologize”.

Victoria, by Grupo Modelo, tried and failed to contain this crisis by tweeting that “they would never take liberties with something like this,” when in fact, they did — smh. The company, however, did apologize and admitted to making a mistake:

“We would never take liberties with something like this, @RealGDT. We are reviewing where the wires got crossed. Apart from this, we will continue to support Mexican talent as we have done up to now,” tweeted the company.

But in another twist of events, the very next day, Victoria deleted all tweets, images and every single trace of the ‘Guillermo del Toro’ campaign from the company’s social media — including the half-assed apology tweet.

On Thursday of the same week, Del Toro tweeted out that things had been patched up between himself and the beer maker.

At the end of last week, the director announced that the beer company’s faux pas was a thing of the past, and that the two managed to find a solution: “The misunderstanding has been fixed in good will. The cans with my signature will be substituted by a new graphic project (with no profit for me) and the proceeds will be going to @CDMXOMM and @SOMEXICO_ Thank you,” he tweeted in Spanish.

The organizations mentioned in the critically acclaimed director’s tweet, work for causes he continually supports.

@CDMXOMM is Mexico City’s math olympics, an academic program that helps students and young people develop their creative math skills. @SOMexico_ or Special Olympics Mexico, is an organization that offers sports training and support for intellectually disabled athletes.

Del Toro has supported these causes in the past and continues to champion children’s academic needs.

When he’s not directing award-winning films or being celebrated at award shows, the director works closely with organizations, supporting students’ ambitions in math, animation and now, sports. Only this year, he offered a full scholarship to young Deborah Balboa for a Masters in Arts and Animation at the best university in Paris, France. Also this year, in March, he helped two students attend university to study film thanks to the Jenkins-Del Toro scholarship. He also paid for two students to attend a math world tournament in England, from his own pocket.