Brewing locally and in small quantities has become a trend, and France has not been left out of it. Overall the popularity of beer and craft beer in France has grown. When you think of France, good quality wine is one of the first things that comes to mind. Nevertheless, the country has seen a boom in micro and craft beer breweries. For anyone who wants to see if French beer is as good as their wine, then look at some of these best craft beer breweries in France.
In this article on the best breweries in France, we will discuss:
- What are microbreweries and craft beer breweries?
- History of microbreweries in France
- Best microbreweries and craft beer breweries in France
What are microbreweries and craft beer breweries?
The definition of a microbrewery refers to the quantity of beer produced by a brewery per year. The numbers vary a bit by country, but in France, a microbrewery is a brewery that produces less than 200 000 hectoliters of beer per year. The term craft beer brewery relates to the technique. A microbrewery can make craft beer, and a craft beer brewery can be of any size.
You can read more from our complete guide to microbreweries.
History of microbreweries in France
The French are not known for their consumption of beer. Thus, the beer industry had a rough start, and while craft beer breweries started gaining popularity in other countries, the beer industry in France was even declining. Brewers had to come up with a solution and thought of offering less bitter beers to the consumers. That led to lagers becoming popular in the 90s. Besides lagers, traditional Belgian beers and other foreign beers started to raise curiosity among consumers.
With the market on the rise again, the 90s brought in new small brewers that focused on brewing locally and creating original beers. These new breweries became successful and started to inspire other brewers. This created a whole boom of microbreweries. For instance, in 2013, there were 76 large breweries and 504 microbreweries in France. In 2019, the number grew rapidly, and France had 300 large breweries and 1650 microbreweries. These numbers only confirm that the French has started to appreciate a good craft beer.
Top best microbreweries and craft beer breweries in France for craft beer.
Today there are so many breweries in France. Each region has its own breweries with different recipes and beer styles. For anyone who is just starting to discover French craft beer, have a look at some of the best craft beer breweries in the country.
Arthur and Charles were friends and beer enthusiasts who started brewing and experimenting with a beer in their kitchen. Their passion led them to create their own brewery Aerofab. Their goal is to offer a large variety of craft beers in different beer styles.
- La Debauche
When you are drinking La Debauche beer, you will be firstly impressed by their beer labels. Artists all over the world illustrate their beer bottles. The brewery was created by graphic design and beer enthusiasts, which can explain their artistic side. They brew about 10 000 hectoliters of beer per year and have put together over 200 recipes.
- Piggy Brewing
Four friends have created the Piggy Brewing Company, which follows a pig mindset. Joyful and fat, and happy to share a beer with friends. Though a small production, the brewery has become extremely popular. People from all over the world are asking for their beers. So be fast to try some before their stock runs out!
Popihn brewery is located on the Popihn family farm that is surrounded by cereal crops, livestock, orchards and a large wooded area. The whole area is connected to create their beers. The wood is used in the barrels, the barley in the beer and the orchards for the taste. Because of this, Popihn brewery is known for its fruity and bitter IPA.
- Brasserie de l'Être
A couple of brewers in Paris took up the challenge to improve the image of beer in the capital. Thus brewery de l’Être was born. They focus on biological beers. Their beers are not only good for your palate but also the planet.
See also our complete list of Paris brewers.
- Effet Papillon
Can a love story come from beer? Yes, it can! That’s what happened to Jocelyn and Mathilde, a couple sharing love for each other and beer. Their goal is to offer original and balanced beers. Effet Papillon brewery mostly focuses on barrel-aged beers.
Check out our beer box, which has a selection of beer from breweries founded by couples. You will find Effet Papillon beers in the box.
- Brasserie Iron
Iron breweries' ephemeral brews and unique beers make them popular among beer geeks. Blueberry, guava and lychee are just a few examples of the exotic beer flavours they create. Their out of the box thinking has created a lot of buzz around their beers and excitement for tasting.
- Hoppy Road
Located in Eastern France, this microbrewery is placing huge importance on hops in their beers. Exactly as the brewery’s name suggests. The three brewers of Hoppy Road have been recognized in Paris Beer Week in 2015 for their great work. Hoppy Road has four permanent beers, and they make limited edition beers for experimenting with tastes.
Brewery Prizm is the youngest one on the list. Despite having been created only in 2020, it is worth checking these guys out. They are already creating some amazing NEIPAs and IPAs. This Southern France brewery is using a dry-hopping method in their beers.
Now that you can put together a French craft beer bucket list, let’s start tasting. Cheers!