Some of you might think I have been slipping on my duties to faithfully report on beers around the world. I could agree with you somewhat, but Ecuador has only two “national” beers, so there was much work to be done. This does not mean we lacked in our obligation to sample them whenever possible. After all, how can you write a review about beer without fully testing the palate with many different samples?
Pilsener, the more popular of the two major brands, can be found just about anywhere, even all the way out in the Galapagos Islands. There’s nothing too special about this beer, except that it is by far the country’s favorite, and it is cheap. Being cheap, combined with it being ice-cold, make this an acceptable beer.
I think the exact quote from Kristen was, “I sure hope this town (Baños) has Sushi.” Now, she has been saying this as we have arrived in almost every new place, but magically this time, her wish came true. Samurai Sushi had its grand opening on the same day that we arrived, so we waited a few days for both them and us (Baños was not kind to our stomachs) to work out the bugs.
South America is not particularly known for their sushi, but Samurai Sushi hit the spot. It was a bit expensive by Ecuadorean standards, but we threw the budget out the window, just this once, and enjoyed a nice meal. We figured we deserved it after not being able to eat much for so long.
The sushi was surprisingly good for being in the mountains in Ecuador, and we enjoyed eating something other than beans and rice or rice and beans. The chilly Pilsener was a great compliment to flavorful sushi.
Baños also had a small brewery called La Cascada Brewery which has created a few signature brewskis. The one that caught my eye was the oatmeal stout. Those of you who know me, know I love a stout beer and this one was good. It had a great taste of both oatmeal and barley, which has been hard to find in South America.
Ecuador has been a real adventure with much to see and do, but unfortunately the beer variety has been lacking. We will keep up with our quest to explore the world and try new beers along the way. Peru looks promising.