The first thing that comes to my mind when thinking about drinking alcohol in Mexico is definitely tequila and all kind of drinks with lime juice. Further on the list is Corona beer and Kahlua – a coffee liquor. But the selection of alcohols is much wider. Regional, flavored liquors that base either on tequila or mescal; different tequilas – tequila azul, gold, tequila anejo, etc.; mescal; rum; whiskey and much more. While these alcoholic beverages are relatively high in voltage and might be quite expensive, Mexican beer is a good alternative. Mexican beers' alcohol voltage rarely exceeds 5%. Beers are mostly light, mild in taste and very popular. Apart from a well-known label - Corona and Corona Light, there is a lot of other brands and beers from local breweries. So called ‘cerveza artesanal’ is available in many bars and is also worth trying. Although the brewing history is long and this golden drink is very popular, local beers are not as popular as these from big breweries. That is why we decided to make a ranking of best Mexican beers excluding craft beers.
Modelo Negra is number one for us. That dark beer is moderately bitter, has a smoky aroma and at the end of tasting it, a bitterish taste is left on the tongue. The foam is dense but is quickly dissipating. Modelo Negra and Especial have a nice bottle, that distinguishes them from other brands. The alcohol content is 5.3%
Bohemia Oscura Vienna has a vivid, dark color. That Vienna style beer is moderately bitter and has a slightly sweet taste. Its foam is also dense, but in contradiction to the one of Modelo Negra, stays for a long time. The alcohol content is 5.3%
Bohemia Clara is a light Pilsner beer with a very well balanced bitterness. The honey color and richness of aromas pushed us to put it on the third place. The alcohol content is 4.7%
Modelo Especial is another highly rated product of Grupo Modelo - Corona. By the way, on their product list you will find also Corona, Estrella Jalisco, Montejo, Pacifico and Victoria. It is a light, fruity beer. Is mildly bitter and when poured into a glass, it has a perfect amber color. What is interesting, at the end of tasting it, you can distinguish some banana flavors.
Corona Extra and Coronita Extra are both light and mild beers. They have a pale color, but still are aromatic and refreshing. Both Coronas are one of the most available and popular beers in Mexico. That is also the best known Mexican beer around the world. Served in bottles or a draft beer, can be obtained in almost every bar The alcohol content is respectively 4.6% and 4.5%.
Indio beer has a sweet smell and flavor. A malt taste is also distinguishable. Indio is brewed by Cuauhtemoc-Mectozuma brewery (Heineken). Later on, you can taste some bitterness. Finally, it reaches smoky flavors. The color is relatively dark. The foam dissipates quickly. The alcohol content is 4.1%
Victoria Negra is a mild Mexican beer. Has a relatively pale color, just slightly darker than other lagers beers. The bitterness is low, however still pleasant.
XX Dos Equis is quite an interesting beer. Is bitter with some spicy flavors. Has a relatively big foam, that is lasting for a long time. That time, it was served from a barrel and we ordered a jar to share.
Pacifico Clara is one of most popular Mexican lagers. Pacifico is very light and mild. The bitterness is slightly distinguishable. The color is pale. The foam dissipates quickly. The alcohol content is 4.5%
Sol is a light beer with some fruity aromas. Citrus fruits with a slight bitterness make a nice composition. The color is pale. The foam is little and quickly dissipates. What is interesting, the history of that brewery dates from 19th century. The alcohol content is 4.2%
The next lager is Tecate Light. Tecate is slightly bitter and less aromatic than all previously tasted beers. The color is pale. The foam is very little and quickly goes away. The alcohol content is 3.9%
Apart from these listed beers, there is more of them, that are also really good, but are more difficult to find. If you have a chance, try also a premium Montejo beer with lime; and remember, don’t limit yourself to big beer brands only. Try craft beers – cerveza artesanal too! Why not picking every time another Mexican beer?
If you are interested in other local beers check our review of Japanese beers from Hokkaiado - Otaru Beer!