Once upon a time far far away at the other end of the world, in Patagonia, a fox served us craft beers better than most of what you can get in Europe. How is that possible ?
El Calafate in Patagonia is primarily living from its touristic activities. It is indeed the gateway to Patogonia’s main glaciers (including the famous Perito Moreno) and to an incredible wildlife and landscape.
From a 6,000 head-counts in 2001, El Calafate more than tripled its population in 2014 with 20,000 inhabitants.
Mass tourism is harmful and we did not want to contribute to further encourage a mass consumption threatening local environment and traditions. Our willingness to resist a frenzy of consumerism was however badly shaken when we spotted at least two craft breweries in such a small city.
At first we thought only it was another trick to push us tourists to spend our money on imported and tasteless beers.
I gave away after a long hike in the mountains where we heard local guides talking about a brewpub serving beers produced directly on the spot. They named this taproom La Zorra . It means female fox in Spanish.
Fox hunt in El Calafate
First surprise on our way to track this legendary fox:
we bought an IPA produced by El Calafate’s Cerviceria Artesanal Chopen.
This beer is fresh with a generous foam and a nice cereal taste who reminded us of a great Belgian Saison type beer. In such a beautiful natural environment with pure water we understand we can get high quality beer.
After struggling our way to a painful shopping and restaurants area we reached our goal without spending money on souvenirs. We finally entered the local taproom the guides were talking about: la Zorra.
A taproom with 12 draft beers brewed on site
It was simply a delight. This lovely fox serves at least 12 draft craft beers produced on site. From a light refreshing pale ale with local hops to a thick and strong stout, a double IPA and a Belgian tripel beer, we found what we needed.
The local IPA impressed me the most. It has a slight amber color with a nice floral nose and a sweet passion fruit aftertaste. After several sips, the fine notes of caramel give a lovely balance to the beer.
You know now where to go if you have the chance to pass by Patagonia!