Sunday, January 28, 2007


From time to time, I want to post what I consider to be vital info for the visitor to Honduras. One such topic is Honduran beer. I used to poo-poo Honduran beer because I found the quality to be very inconsistent. Instead, I used to buy Heineken, the real stuff imported from Holland. It was a real bargain compared to the States. A bottle of Heineken was normally only $1.50-$1.80 in a restaurant. But now things have changed. The Cerveceria Hondurena was bought a few years ago by SABMiller, and the quality has markedly improved. At the same time, Heineken is no longer imported from Holland and is now imported from Costa Rica where it is bottle under license. One swallow and you will know its not the 'real' thing.

So now I proudly drink Honduran beer. In general Honduran beers are quite light and contain 4.5% - 5% alcohol.

What are the local brews? Here's my take on the Honduran brands:

Barena- Think Honduran Corona. It's in a clear, transparent bottle with a light flavor and very easy to drink.

Port Royal- Think Honduran Michelob. The namesake comes from Roatan. It's a cold filtered beer, and the one most people are familiar with since it's the one that's exported. This is considered the Honduran quality beer

Salva Vida- Think Honduran Budweiser. It's a very light tasting beer. Personally, I find it has very little flavor, but then I don't think Budweiser has any flavor either. This is probably the most popular Honduran beer.

Imperial- Think Honduran Heineken. This is a pilsner style beer with a little more intense flavor. This classic formula has been brewed since 1930, and is sometimes considered Tegucigalpa beer. While all the beers are brewed in San Pedro Sula, Imperial is more widely distributed in the capital.

Imperial is my personal preference, but when its not available I drink Port Royal.

Finally, beer in Honduras is quite a bargain, generally selling for about 20-30 lemperas ($1.00- $1.50). With prices like this, one can afford to, as they say in New Orleans, 'laissez les bons temps roulez!'


La Gringa said...

Hey Don Godo, I see that you've made the big time! This post is linked on Global Voices. Congratulations.

I found it an interesting article even though I don't drink beer. El Jefe's drinking Barena these days.

More, more, more! (articles, that is, not beer)

Anonymous said...

Salva Vida is my personal favorite, the oldest beer in the country by the way.....Id like to add that Imperial will give you a killer hangover...youll prefer listening to your mother in law all week than waking up with an Imperial hangover.
real strong stuff folks, stay away from it!

Anonymous said...

Can you order it in the states? Or maybe get it shipped?

Anonymous said...

Recently I was in Honduras. Saying that you are proud to drink Salva Vida is like a hells angel saying he was proud to ride a scooter while in Roatan.

Dave Walker said...

I make art from beer bottle caps and recently got a box of caps from Honduras. This helped me identify a couple, thanks. Maybe you can help me with these:
Gold cap with compass rose and green ring
Gold & blue, red ring, 2 palm trees, says "export beer"
These may be soda pop, I have gold and purple caps each with just the word "tropical"
You can check my art out at

RDfernandez said...

gold cap with compass is PORT ROYAL beer, gold and blue with palm tress is BARENA beer, and tropical is soda pop