November 21, 2013

Organising a Piss Up in a Brewery. Port Vila, Vanuatu.

There has not been enough focus on beer in Farflungplaces, an important part of the travel experience. I will attempt to put this right with this post.

The best beer in the South Pacific is in Vanuatu. You may dispute this, but if you have tasted the bland Fiji Bitter, and the rather metallic tasting South Pacific ales in Papua New Guinea you may see my point. The Tusker brewery in Port Vila uses local spring water, and imported Czech hops to produce the islands best seller, a lager.

All around Port Vila you will see adverts in Bislama promoting the "Bia blong yumi" (the beer that belongs to you and me). The beer in the bottle is good, but if you can get it on draught it is outstanding.

The draught version is unpasteurised, and will only last for five days from the date of brewing so you know it is going to be fresh. There are only about five places in Port Vila that do sell Tusker on draught, and this being Vanuatu, it is often not available. I would recommend trying 'The Moorings', down on the Lini highway, where you can sup your beer while dangling your toes in the Pacific ocean.

Seeing how good the fresh draught beer was, I made enquiries into tasting the beer at source. Thanks to a contact, I managed to organise a friday afternoon visit for me and some local friends. The result was a fantastic guided tour detailing all the stages of brewing, followed by a couple of hours tasting multiple bottles of the produce straight from the bottling line. It was some of the best beer I had ever tasted.

We could not finish all the beer that had been generously brought out for us to taste, so the brewer kindly let us take half a crate home, as long as we returned the empty bottles for re-use later. Possibly the friendliest brewery on earth.

Read more about Vanuatu in this brand new guide book by Far Flung Places. 324 pages packed full of places to see, places to stay and eat, and many handy hints to allow you to see the best of this fascinating country in the most up-to-date guide available to this country. 

Accompanied by a selection of stories about places, events and people in Vanuatu which will transport the armchair traveller to this incredible Pacific nation, while giving more background and details for the intrepid visitor. Available as an ebook or paperback from all good booksellers. Buy it from here and from here.

You Might Also Like