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Mexican beer is muy popular. Here’s why

A brief history of Mexican beer

When you pop the top of that clear bottle with its all-but-clear contents, low IBU, less-than-mild but all-too refreshing flavor, you might not have realized you were drinking German beer.
But before that – yes, there was a time before beer in Mexico – when more native adult beverages like pulque or tesgüino, made from fermented agave or corn, ruled. Though beer as we know it has been brewed in Mexico since the 1500s – its production and distribution limited by European colonialists and limited supplies – the evolution of Mexican beer didn’t gain momentum until the mid-1800s, when German immigrants began making their way south. Soon, brands such as Victoria, which claims to be the oldest beer in Mexico, began popping up. Getting their inspiration from darker Vienna styles, captured in Mexico today in a beer like Modelo Negra, they were bit different from what we now know as a Mexican-style lager.
With the expansion of the railroad came the import of brewing supplies and ingredients but also competition from U.S. brewers. Though U.S. Prohibition in the 1920s was a win for Mexican breweries near the border, increased competition forced consolidation and mergers that lasted into the 21st century, with AB InBev now owning basically every Mexican beer you can readily find around here, including Corona, Pacifico, and Modelo.
David Holub

Colossal Sanders for DGO; image via Adobe Stock
A brief history of Mexican beer

When you pop the top of that clear bottle with its all-but-clear contents, low IBU, less-than-mild but all-too refreshing flavor, you might not have realized you were drinking German beer.
But before that – yes, there was a time before beer in Mexico – when more native adult beverages like pulque or tesgüino, made from fermented agave or corn, ruled. Though beer as we know it has been brewed in Mexico since the 1500s – its production and distribution limited by European colonialists and limited supplies – the evolution of Mexican beer didn’t gain momentum until the mid-1800s, when German immigrants began making their way south. Soon, brands such as Victoria, which claims to be the oldest beer in Mexico, began popping up. Getting their inspiration from darker Vienna styles, captured in Mexico today in a beer like Modelo Negra, they were bit different from what we now know as a Mexican-style lager.
With the expansion of the railroad came the import of brewing supplies and ingredients but also competition from U.S. brewers. Though U.S. Prohibition in the 1920s was a win for Mexican breweries near the border, increased competition forced consolidation and mergers that lasted into the 21st century, with AB InBev now owning basically every Mexican beer you can readily find around here, including Corona, Pacifico, and Modelo.
David Holub