Beer - Pub - Food
There are loads and loads on the horizon for FrogBeer with expansion plans, exclusive 2017 releases and an eye on evolution, but what is now a series of 13 locations throughout France was once the only place a Rosbif could get a proper pint.
Frog & Rosbif
You may not know this but, the French call the English 'Roast Beef' while the English called the French "Frogs." There is a long history between the two countries so when Paul Chantier's yearning for English style brews turned into a Parisian brewpub, the name choice was simple. A French bar serving English style beer? Frog & Rosbif! Now, 23 years later with the name it's customers bestowed up it, FrogBeer is Paris's largest group of locally crafted beer and burgers.
I put on my 'stupid Yank' pin and went to visit the production facility in Saint-Denis to get a better sense of what goes into making these award winning beers.
FrogBeer Looking Forward
“Have I told you lately that I love you?”
When Kate Hyde, brewer, brewing trainer and part of the sales and marketing team for FrogBeer, started outlining plans for future beers, I felt inclined to remind her how very much I personally adore her. Here are some of the things her and the team have in the works for 2017 :
- Launch of Empire pale ale, based on a traditional English Export Ipa from the 19th century which they've tweeked ever so slightly by adding Target hops to the mix. Target is a newer hop variety from England that has a really lovely herbaceous, piney, and grassy quality to it.
- "Beery-beer" a tasty low alcohol beer that isn’t super hoppy or acidic but actually tastes like malt and hops and water and yeast in equal proportions.
- Fermentation tests are going on right now with fresh fruit and concentrate, “there will be no syrups!” Kate assured me, for a cherry porter or stout, apricot white, strawberry or raspberry saison, and a rhubarb something, possibly a rhubarb rye.
You can understand now why I was buttering her up! She added that, of course they were looking into barrel ageing and getting involved in collaborations but they also want get themselves settled in terms of managing supply and demand because they are currently brewing at full capacity.
The Revolution Will Not Be Pasteurized
FrogBeer isn't filtered or pasteurized, the branding is fun and the team behind the company are outstanding but, despite it's multi-award winning beer, FrogPUBS sit in a place between beer geek and ground level. It's what I like to call fine.
The locations are fun looking and well designed with free wifi and convenient hours. The friendly staff, if not always well educated in what they're serving, are jolly and mean well. The commercial brand ketchup and mayonnaise on the table may get lost in the ocean of menus upon arrival but once you've waded through the lists of burgers, salads, tacos and whatever other manner of things they have on special for that time of day, you're free to enjoy the deco and chat with friends. It's a common ground not unlike a Red Robin, Chili's, or TGIF.
In one of our talks Kate told me that they brew with the idea to, "give people beer they are used to and also something a bit adventurous." The pubs always have the classic blonde, blanche, something dark but also something hoppy and a few extras.
Maybe one month it will be the Maison Blanche a very traditional European style Belgian white ale with coriander and orange peel or the next month it could be Ker... Splat! Their American style wheat ale made with (the usual) excessive amount of American hops.
This is all fine. Who can complain when something is what it says it is? FrogBeer is accessible to a great movement of people honing their wine loving palates in on something other than beer plus syrup while thrill seekers like myself nudge brewers toward barrel ageing. I may not enjoy the manufactured coolness of the FrogPubs but I respect their place in Paris as an outlet for the middle ground movement and am grateful that they are making proper beer.
We have a necessity for them. They're not to be overlooked or underestimated. Keep an eye out for the new beers as it seems they get better with each cycle!
Carry on drinkers, cheers to you!
- You can find out more about FrogPubs and their locations through out France here : http://www.frogpubs.com/
- But for purely beer related updates check the FrogBeer Facebook
- I would suggest getting your updates on their many events and special releases from their facebook page
- If you're looking to avoid tourists traps in Paris, give My Parisian Life a look over
- and here is what I'm drinking while writing this