Drinking Green Anywhere in the World
Local, Organic Beer
Ah, one of my favorite topics: beer. Just as with produce and other food, locally-produced and organic is the more environmentally-friendly option with beer. Plus, when you eat and drink organic you’re consuming fewer pesticides so it’s healthier, too. Drink organic when you can.
Here are some organic beer resources to get you started:
- 7 green beer resources from my St. Patrick’s Day post on organic beer
- BeerActivist’s organic beer roundup
- Grist reviews 7 organic beers
And I would TOTALLY be here if I could, but I’m returning from my honeymoon 2 weeks before. It’s my goal to volunteer here next year – the North American Organic Brewers Festival. This year it’s on June 27-29, 2008 in Portland, Oregon.
Local, Organic Wine
I have to admit I’m not a big wine connoisseur (except with Rieselings – thanks for the Mosel tour, Adam and Jason!). Two buck Chuck from Trader Joe’s is generally just dandy, but I always buy organic when possible. But apparently the USDA doesn’t allow sulfites in organic wine – even though they’ve been used for centuries to slow the fermentation process (and make the wine taste good longer). Read more about it at Serious Eats. Gotta love it.
If you’re willing to give it a go, check out these sites:
- Background from the Organic Consumers Association
- Recommended Wines from About.com
- Search for wines by country or type, care of the Organic Vinters Association
- Find more organic wines at The Organic Wine Press, a small, locally-owned store in Oregon
- Get organic wine recommendations from Ideal Biters
I’m not gonna lie. When I studied abroad in St. Petersburg, Russia in college, I drank. Way more than I probably should have. But, hey, I was young and that’s part of the study abroad experience, right? My beverage of choice involved Gzhelka, an amazingly smooth yet incredibly cheap vodka. Coming back to imported Smirnoff sure was a shocker.
During my travels abroad, I also experienced the worst alcohol I’ve ever tasted – Becherovka. It’s a Czech alcohol that tastes like a putrid, strong cough syrup. I don’t doubt that there are ways to drink it that make it taste better – perhaps a 1:50 mix with a sweet juice of choice – I just never found it. But the point is, you’ll never know until you try and experimenting with different local liquors (responsibly, of course) is a fun way to experience a new culture.
Juice and Local Drinks
Some of the best juices I’ve ever had were in Russia and Egypt. Growing up on American “from concentrate” juices, I had no idea what real grape juice could taste like and I’d never even thought about drinking the nectar of peaches and cherries. Even juice from the supermarket was better than anything I’d found at home, short of fresh-squeezed. So go out on a limb and try something new. You never know what you’ll find.
This is the thirteenth post in Go Green Travel Green’s 25 Days to Green Travel series. You can see the complete list of articles in the 25 Days to Green Travel Index.
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