In honor of International Beer Day—a worldwide celebration of beer styles, brewers, and drinkers—we are sharing eight homebrew recipes and articles on fermented beverages from around the world. These include “classic” beer styles, historical precursors to beer, and other fermented beverages you can make right in your kitchen!
Pulque is a Mexican beverage that is said to be the oldest fermented drink known to North America. Made from the fermented nectar of agave, this ancient elixir born in divine mysticism has evolved to a beer-like libation that is still brewed today.
Saison is a classic Belgian “farmhouse” style that can be tricky to reduce to a one-sentence description. Brewers have taken the style in many different directions, though all are typically hallmarked by peppery, fruity, and sometimes tart Belgian yeast character.
Tej is a type of mead with origins in Ethiopia. It is typically made using gesho entchet. Gesho entchet are Ethiopian aroma hop stems when used in mead add a nice bitterness to balance out the sweetness.
One of the world’s oldest, continually-brewed styles of beer is the Finnish farm-style sahti. Rich with Nordic tradition, this centuries-old style has overcome many twists and turns throughout its history to remain a prevalent yet ancient style.
Making authentic sake might seem intimidating for those who have never tried it before, but the process is no more complex than brewing an all-grain beer. In fact, despite being referred to as “rice wine,” sake making is more similar to brewing beer than fruit wines.
6. New England IPA
New England IPA (NEIPA) is a trending (and polarizing) style that trades prominent hop bitterness typical of classic IPAs for robust hop flavor and aroma. They are often accompanied by the signature NEIPA haze.
Kvass, an ancient Russian beer, is a diverse style that can take many forms depending on where and at what time of year it is brewed. At its core it’s always low alcohol (<2% ABV) bread-y beer with a slightly sour tartness.
Chicha is an ancient beer traditionally made from chewed-up corn, saliva, and spices. The drink’s history dates back to around 5000 B.C.E. where there’s evidence of early pottery in the Andean region used as vessels to carry and store chicha.