About Italian Beer

About Italian Beer
While beer is still far behind wine in terms of popularity in Italy, things are slowly changing. For years, beer in Italy meant good, if unexciting products from large breweries; that is still the case at most pizzerie or large restaurants throughout the country.

However, high quality microbrews have been making quite an impact over the past decade. Menabrea, a high quality lager from Piedmont, is served in many of the finest hotels and restaurants in Italy and is now exported to more than twenty countries. Buoyed by that success, dozens of microbrew pubs have opened in various areas throughout Italy; most are in the north, but you can now find one on the island of Sardinia as well.

These artisan brewers craft all type of beers, from lagers to amber ales to Belgian-style dubbels. These brews work pair well with the tremendous array of local foods in Italy, so that combined with a trend of younger Italians slowly moving away from wine and toward other beverages, should provide a healthy future for beer - from large and small breweries - throughout the country.

Top Picks for Italy

Fabbrica della Birra Tenute Collesi Srl Collesi "Triplo Malto"
93 points
Bright light gold color. Lively, toasty, fruity aromas of panettone and candied yams and mango with a bright, effervescent, fruity sweet medium body and a warming, complex, medium-long banana bread pudding, toasted pretzel bread, and sweet and peppery spices finish. A delightful and engaging spicy malty golden ale.
Collesi IPA
92 points
Cloudy old gold color. Aromas and flavors of lemon herb banana bread pudding, fine lavender soap, and sautéed lentils and greens with a satiny, bright, finely carbonated, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, medium-length finish imparting nuances of meyer lemon-pineapple salsa and spiced banana-pear custard finish. A delicious, sweet puffy cloud of an IPA that will appeal to all types of beer drinkers.
Birra Moretti La Rossa Doppelbock
92 points
Clear reddish mahogany color. Roasted aromas of roasted nuts, cocoa-dusted dried fruits, and salted rye cracker with a satiny, bright, finely carbonated, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, compelling, medium-long roasted carrot and parsnip, chocolate fudge cake, and hint of lemon pepper finish. A very tasty and appetizing bock that is sure to please.
Peroni Gran Riserva Doppio Malto
91 points
Brilliant gold color. Aromas and flavors of egg sandwich, dried stone fruits, roasted nuts and grains, and peach blossoms with a supple, bright, finely carbonated, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a warming, captivating, long finish with accents of mixed lettuces and greens, lemon pepper, and buttered raisin rye bread finish. A zesty, flavorful bock with nice depth, balance and warm.
Peroni Gran Riserva Rossa
91 points
Clear copper color. Toasty aromas and flavors of honeyed toast, butter roasted nuts, and rose hips with a supple, lively, effervescent, dryish medium body and a tingling, interesting, medium-length finish that shows notes of frisee, pepper, dried citrus, and clay and wax finish. A rock solid, dry earthy Vienna lager that will cover a lot of bases.
Fabbrica della Birra Tenute Collesi Srl Collesi "Nera"
91 points
Bright medium brown color. Delicate, dusty, curious exotic savory aromas and flavors of dark rye raisin bread, fruit cake, and sarsaparilla with a soft, vibrant, bubbly, fruity sweet medium-to-full body and a smooth, stimulating, medium-long finish imparting suggestions of honeyed nuts and yams, arugula, and delicate spices finish. A rich malty, creamy Belgian ale with great fruit and spice.
Collesi Rossa Belgian-Style Amber Ale
90 points
Reddish mahogany color. Aromas of caramel-drenched coffee beans, lemon peel preserve, molasses, and chinese 5 spice with a velvety, bright, spritzy, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a warming, interesting, medium-length chestnut honey, palo santo wood, rum raisin, chocolate-malt, and espresso bean finish. A very roasty take on a Belgian-Style amber ale.
Fabbrica della Birra Tenute Collesi Srl Collesi "Rosso"
90 points
Bright reddish mahogany color. Rich, fruity, floral aromas and flavors of caramelized figs and orange, chocolate, and fruit cake with a satiny, bright, spritzy, off-dry medium body and a warming, interesting, medium-length finish displaying notes of spiced bananas and yams, watercress, and honeyed nuts finish. A nicely layered and appetizing amber ale.
Peroni Gran Riserva Puro Malto
89 points
Clear gold color. Funky aromas and flavors of succotash, creamed spinach with buttered croutons, and canned asparagus with a supple, crisp, finely carbonated, dry light-to-medium body and a tingling, brisk finish that shows notes of roasted corn cakes and yams, salted nuts, frisee, and wet grain finish. A savory, earthy quaffer.
Tenute Collesi Triplo Malto Belgian-Style Specialty Ale
89 points
Brilliant hazy gold color. Herbal, spicy aromas and flavors of herb muffin, delicate spiced nuts, and dried flowers and bananas with a satiny, bright, fruity medium-to-full body and a warming, interesting, medium-long finish with nuances of delicate pepper and mint, radicchio, and caramelized spiced apples and pears finish. A very inviting and satisfying Belgian ale with rich malt and spicy hop notes.