(Originally published in Violet7 Magazine, March 2015)
Feeling uninspired as of late by your 3-euro Monoprix sauvignon? Me too- so on March 30th the Planète Bière exposition was a refreshing and sturdy-glassed break, rekindling a love of beer that living in Paris had all but buried. Upon my arrival rather late into the afternoon, the Tapis Rouge in the 10eme was still packed, with Parisians of all stripes testing the proffered 400 beers from 75 different breweries. The majority of the breweries were French, but there were also Italian, Belgian, Japanese, and more countries happily opening their taps for the participants. The event was in a gorgeous space, with an open enough layout to avoid elbow-to-elbow drinking (which can only end in spillage). I myself am partial to blondes, and notable favorites included the lemony and crisp La Bercloise, as well as the ½ Ale from the Brooklyn Brewery that was spiced with a surprising-and very pleasing- dill note. For a darker selection, I recommend the American Stout from Gallia and the amber La Bête. The huge turnout and enthusiasm for the Planète Bière salon points to a new era in Parisian beer exploration; next time you’re out and the ubiquitous Kronenburg or 1664 isn’t hitting the spot, keep an eye out for an unknown label, and give it a try.