The last five years have seen increased interest in beer, wine, cheese and other foods that are produced and grown in small batches. The “micro” brew segment of the beer market in the United States, in a generally sluggish economy, has grown and become a very lucrative segment of the beverage market. And now… the French have arrived.

The Chamber of Commerce, Northern France the Lille Region, recently organized an event that introduced and re-introduced twelve breweries to the New York City market. The following is a brief stroll through that event.

The first stop was the Brasserie De St. Sylvestre and a taste of their “3 Monts Golden Ale”. This is a refreshing brew with a deceptively high alcohol by volume of 8.5%


Next was a taste of the beers from Les Brasseurs De Gayant. The beer I was most interested in was their “Amadeus” a wheat beer with a touch of citric. At 4.5% alcohol by volume it was refreshing and could be considered a “session” brew.


After those two samples, and most informative conversations with the brewers and their local representatives, the event was starting to get crowded. The photo above shows folks from the Brasserie Castelain serving samples to members of the press.


This is what it looks like when members of the beverage media cover an event. Yes, all of these folks eating and drinking are actually working very hard.


And here is where my note taking became impossible. The selection of food presented by the host restaurant DBGB was a credit to the restaurant and to the Lille Chamber of Commerce.

Tomorrow, a conversation with the folks behind the French beers…