Italy is renowned for its excellent wines, which usually means that its fantastic beers can go under the radar very easily. So you should stop thinking about German or Belgian beers, and try some of the best and most popular Italian beer brands that are readily available! You’ll be amazed by the depth of flavor these beers possess.
In the last couple of years, beer production in Italy has taken on new heights and now we have some tasty beers that are not just sought-after in Italy however, but all over the globe as well.
In between meals with an alcoholic drink, why not try refreshing with a delicious Italian beer?
This guide is proudly sponsored by Wynter Stores.
What Are The Best Italian Beers?
What’s the most popular beer in Italy? It varies from Peroni Nastro Azzurro, Cortigiana, Birra Moretti, Quarta Runa, Peroni Gran Riserva to Birra Messina amongst many others.
To assist you in the right direction, when choosing Italian beers these are the 11 best and most popular Italian beers that are available in Italy and around the world, they are all worth trying!
1. Peroni Nastro Azzurro
Peroni is an Italian beer that is well-known throughout the globe. It is thought to be among the oldest breweries in Italy that have been brewing for more than 175 years and enjoys an established position within the beer industry all over the world.
The most popular and best Peroni beer is Peroni Nastro Azzurro. The beer is fresh, refreshing, and distinctive in flavor, with notes of citrus, and a golden-colored color that is like Prosecco.
Peroni Nastro Azzurro has been produced since 1963 and is brewed with the same standards and care for particulars.
The beer is currently going through a brand rebranding, and the bottle of Peroni Nastro is now based on the authentic Italian tradition, as well as the rich history that it has.
Its new design features exquisite curves and designs and the Signature of Giovanni Peroni, one of the founders of Peroni is visible inside the bottle.
Peroni Nastro Azzurro is considered one of the premium beers throughout the world, particularly in the United Kingdom.
It’s a refreshing beer with an incredibly balanced balance of bitterness and a delicate citrus flavor that makes it the ideal beer to enjoy at any time of the occasion.
The amount of alcohol in the Peroni Nastro is 5.1%, and it is a lager type beer. The flavors are crisp and refreshing, and there is a noticeable presence of citrus in the aroma. The color is stunning gold which is reminiscent of that color in Prosecco.
If you’re in Italy or any other part of the globe, Peroni Nastro Azzurro is certainly a must-try beer!
2. Birra Moretti
Moretti beer has gone through changes of ownership recently, and the brewery has been released as an Italian brand.
In 1996 Moretti was purchased by Heineken the Dutch brand. However Heineken’s Italians were unhappy about their beloved Moretti being owned by the Dutch beer company, and they urged the Antitrust Authority to get involved.
In the wake of the unhappy Italian market, Heineken needed to buy the brand name of Birra Moretti and return it in the name of Birra Castello, an Italian brand.
Moretti is still produced by Heineken and is produced in Heineken’s plant in Milan however, it is part of Birra Castello.
All things considered, Moretti is known as an easy drink perfect for a hot day in the Italian sun. It is a genuine high-quality lager made by passion using only the finest ingredients.
A specially formulated mix of hops can make a lager that is well-balanced with some fruity and hoppy flavors. It is rounded off by moderate bitterness, and a fresh, clean aftertaste.
It has an alcohol content of 4.6%. The main ingredients are malted barley, water and malted hop extract, and maize.
Birra Moretti is an excellent beer to go with various Italian food items, like seafood and pasta. The simple and fresh taste of this beer will take you towards the hills in Tuscany!
Throughout Europe and especially in the United Kingdom, Birra Moretti is the second most popular Italian beer brand, just behind Peroni Nastro Azzurro.
3. Cortigiana Beer
Cortigiana is a rich deep beer that is bursting with the rich aroma of cinnamon and vanilla essence. It is a sour beer that, despite its intensity yet refreshing, is perfect for sipping in the summer heat.
Produced by the Borgorose region of Italy Cortigiana is regarded as an ale. It is 5% alcohol content and is a golden ale with a medium body.
Many people believe Cortigiana is the best inexpensive good beer for anyone living in Italy for enjoying, both locals as well as tourists alike.
If you are drinking Cortigiana It is best served in a glass with a tulip However, many enjoy drinking it straight from the bottle because the bottle and label are just too cute and unique to leave out!
Cortigiana is made using different cereals, in addition to the usual barley malt. It is made up of buckwheat and einkorn, as well as a small number of oat flakes.
A small amount of hops is utilized and a large amount of spices is added near the end that boils.
Along with cinnamon and vanilla essence, There is a significant amount of orange peel, ginger, and coriander are included to provide the ale with a refreshing aromatic, smooth, and smooth flavor that is both rich and delicious.
If you’re planning to take an excursion through Italy it is recommended that you try a couple of bottles of Cortigiana that ought to be on your list of things to try.
4. Quarta Runa
Quarta Runa is one of the beers produced at the microbrewery Birra Montegioco located in Piedmont, Italy. The microbrewery is famous for its excellent range of special beers that have exploded into international markets, and are consumed worldwide.
The microbrewery produces a variety of barley-based sour ale as well as wines and all of them are packaged in their unique packaging.
Each bottle is wrapped in bright colored paper which is then bent into a seal. The various types of ales and beers are wrapped in different hues of paper.
This Quarta Runa beer from this line is definitely one you should test. It contains 77% alcohol and is made with the flavor of local baked peaches and notes that can be discerned as your glass of the powerful ale!
Other baking fruits and spices are also present and evident.
The notes of baked fruits and the spices present in the beer create the perfect companion to a desert, camembert cheese, or even an apple pie!
It is a drink that is consumed at times and is considered an exceptional drink. If you are looking to buy Quarta Runa Make sure you choose a yellow-wrapped bottle, which has an orange-colored tip.
5. Peroni Gran Riserva
The Peroni Gran Riserva was released in 1996 and was named after it being the Gran Riserva being a celebration of the brewery’s 15th anniversary. The anniversary was regarded as an important event as a brewery located in the middle of the country that is known for its wine.
Peroni and Gran Riserva are both produced by the city of Rome. The wine is made with Saaz hops along with malts from Prisma Barley. It is then left to brew for 8 weeks and is then ready to drink.
The resultant beverage is sweet and coppery and has a mild acidic tinge, but leaves some lingering caramel notes and toffee.
The beer has an alcohol level of 5.1% which is thought to be fairly acceptable.
The beer is gaining recognition throughout the world due to staying true to the traditional method of serving it, using an adorable wine-like bottle with a long neck that looks stunningly elegant!
It is the Peroni Gran Riserva actually comes in three varieties: Gran Riserva Rossa with an edgier color, Gran Riserva Puro Malto is a light beer along with Gran Riserva Doppio Malto, which is a darker beer. Gran Riserva Doppio Malto is a darker-colored lager.
6. Menabrea Beer
Menabrea is an old and reliable beer brand that is made through Menabrea located in Biella, Piedmont, with the brewery situated in the historic headquarters.
The Menabrea brewery makes a variety of beers. The two most sought-after is two them: the Bionda Lager and the Amber Ambrata.
Bionda Lager Bionda Lager is matured gently in the ideal temperature that is found in cave cellars. which gives the beer the best clarity of flavor. The Bionda has an alcohol level of 4.8% which is a decent proportion for light drinking.
It is well-balanced and is fruity with citrus and floral notes and a few bitter notes too. They all combine to create the same flavor and a refined and consistent taste.
The wine is further accentuated by a complex malty sweet taste that has outstanding retention of head due to the high quality of ingredients and the process of maturation.
The Ambrata is a 5% alcohol content beer. it’s a full-bodied, balanced amber beer. It has a mildly bitter taste that is refreshing and enjoyable.
It’s amber-colored however it has bronze undertones. The beer is thought to be a display of the brewery’s extraordinary skills and experience in making beer.
The two beers mentioned, as well as those Menabrea, is renowned for, are sophisticated and are perfect for beer-lovers who appreciate a fine taste!
7. Messina Beer
Messina Beer is a well-known beer brewed in Sicily. Birra Messina is the most well-known recipe that was brewed with attention to detail and dedication and made with the finest ingredients sourced by master beer brewers.
Messina is one of the lagers and contains an alcohol level of 4.7% which is an acceptable percentage to possess. It’s a beautiful gold color that truly conveys the atmosphere and culture of Sicily the place where it was produced.
Its foam from Birra Messina is affluent smooth, fine, and compact and makes for a refreshing and pleasant drink.
The taste that the drink has is refreshing with a well-balanced bitterness, and a dry dry finish. You can smell the hops and malts in this refreshing and dry drink.
To truly appreciate Sicily and all it offers, Messina created Birra Messina Cristalli di Sale which is a specially-brewed brew that has an extremely special ingredient: Sicilian crystals of salt.
This is also a must-try beer to try in Italy So we have paired these two Messina beer styles together!
Birra Messina Cristalli Di Sale is an unfiltered lager with 5% alcohol content. It is an opalescent, golden beer with a dense and long-lasting foam.
The flavor of Cristalli Di Sale is delightful It is smooth and fine. It is perfectly balanced. It is a fruity and floral scent and is slightly more moist than the standard Birra Messina.
Messina is, just like Moretti was purchased by the Heineken S.p.A group, however, it’s still produced in Sicily and is a tribute to its origins because of the use of Sicilian salt crystals, which create a distinctive beer that is unmatched.
Both Messina beer varieties are well worth trying out.
8. Angelo Poretti
Angelo Poretti Brewery is an Italian brewery that is part of Carlsberg which is a Danish group.
The beers of Angelo Poretti still adhere to the Italian style of beers and are packed with amazing ingredients and distinctive recipes to make them stand out from Italian beers.
There’s a broad selection of beers under the name Angelo Poretti However, the two most well-known is two beers: the Birrificio Angelo Poretti 3 Luppoli and the Birrifico Angelo Poretti 5 Luppoli Bock Chiara.
The 3 Luppoli from the Birrificio angel Poretti is a refreshing lager with the freshness and thirst-quenching characteristics that make it an ideal beer to sip on during the summer months, or to drink with your everyday food items.
It has a light body and a moderate bitterness, making it an excellent beer to enjoy for those who don’t need any alcohol that is too heavy or overwhelming.
It is suggested to drink it with a Mediterranean flavor. Its alcohol level of three Luppoli is 4.8%, and it is a pilsner.
It is the Birrifico Angelo Poretti 5 Bock Chiara a light Bock with plenty of body and personality.
This beer has a sharp flavor and a smooth body that is enhanced by a mildly bitter taste. It’s most enjoyable with intensely-flavored appetizers like aged cheeses and cold cuts.
The beer has an alcohol level of 6.5%. It is a bock beer.
Although Birrifico Angelo Poretti has been purchased from the Carlsberg Group, the history of the brewery goes back to 1877, when it was established at Induno, Olona.
It is still a tribute to the recipes of the past and the ingredients that are used, and it is evident in the wide selection of premium beers that Angelo Poretti can provide.
If you look at the name, it’s hard to think you’re thinking that Forst would be generally an Italian beer. It is, and it’s made in the Bolzano region which is actually an area that is bilingual within Italy. Forst creates a range of beers that are both light and dark.
The brewery has a rich past, having been established around 1857, by two businessmen. The brewery was initially located in Algund and that’s the location it remains today.
It is located in the foothills of the Italian Alps, the brewery is able to make brews using spring water that is naturally sourced from the mountains.
This assures that the standard of ingredients is maintained and above average and that is the reason why it is among the most well-known breweries in Italy.
When you’re trying the Forst beer There are two top choices: Forst Premium Lager and Forst Sixtus Doppelbock. Both are premium beers that have distinct tastes.
The Forst Premium Lager is a lager with alcohol levels of 4.8%, and, as the name implies is a lager. It’s got a wonderful balance of malts and hops and is characterized by a distinctive scent, with an adhering and long-lasting head.
It is a wonderful session beer that you can enjoy however, it also works perfectly with a variety of beers. It is a subtle flavor and notes that don’t overwhelm, yet is still a refreshing drink to sip.
Another Forst beer worth trying can be the Sixtus Doppelbock. It is a more alcohol content, which is 6.5%, making it a smooth and malty drink. It is a warm beer with flavors of spiced toasted as well as caramel. It also offers a powerful scent of malts that are roasted.
It can be softened thanks to a slight aroma of hops. The beer is a dense and long-lasting head.
Each of these beers has distinct flavors and characteristics however, both are produced with the finest ingredients and spring water directly from the Italian Alps!
Ichnusa is one of the beers that is made by the people of Sardinia, Italy. It is a different beer part of Heineken. Heineken group, however, remains Italian by the ingredient list and recipes that are used.
The name Ichnusa from 1912 has been associated with Sardinia since it’s the largest and most sought-after beer in the region. It is a genuine golden-colored larger with an aroma of hoppy, and bitter notes. It goes well with Italian food.
The alcohol content in Ichnusa stands at 47% making it pleasant and simple to consume. The moderately bitter flavor doesn’t allow it to stand out in other lagers. However, it’s an enjoyable bitter that balances perfectly.
The beer was brewed by Amsicora C. Capra, who was a renowned winemaker. He set off on a journey to develop the perfect beer for the people of Sardinia which was Ichnusa was the result.
The brewery had to close for 30 years as the world was fighting However, in 1945 the brewery reopened and beer was the most popular among Sardinians as well as other people in Italy.
Ichnusa Lager Beer is a pale lager that has the appearance of a light color with a pleasant scent. It’s moderately refreshing and refreshing and has a firm foam.
11. Lambrate Ghisa
Lambrate Ghisa can be described as a pleasantly bitter beer that is a refreshing beer that has dark, rich, and dark flavors.
The beer has an alcohol level of 5%, and the appearance of a cappuccino-colored, thick foam. It’s a smokey Stout-like beer that is flavored with aromas of dried fruit such as licorice, cocoa, and licorice.
The flavorful and rich will make you want more after each sip. taking in the dark beer that is moderately tan in the head.
Although the beer is rich and dark, however, it has delicate flavors, which complement the subtle bitterness that is created by toasting malts.
The bitterness is well balanced with a sweet note on the finish. it has a blend of milky sweetness and coffee roast notes.
The beer is produced in Birrifico Lambrate which is a brewery that is craft-based in the Lambrate district in Milan. It’s fairly young, founded in 1996. However, it has grown to become one of the nation’s most sought-after stouts ever since.
The smoky taste, along with the coffee and toffee accents and a soft and soft bitter finish, and its “friar’s-frock” color, make this a unique beer that you must try should you find nearby a bottle.
Interesting Questions & Facts
Now that we’ve covered the top and most well-known beers of Italy, let’s have a look some time to look at some related questions regarding the subject!
What is the most popular beer in Italy?
As of today, Peroni Nastro Azzurro is the best-selling Italian beer in the world, exported to all continents and over 70 countries. The beer brand has been the subject of a recent restyling, aimed essentially at highlighting the Italian character of the product and underlining its belonging to the large Peroni beer family.
What kind of beer do they drink in Italy?
It used to be if you were looking for good beer in Italy, there was only one thing you could drink: wine. The country is dominated by two huge beer brands, Peroni and Moretti.
What is the local beer in Italy?
Famous Italian Beer Peroni and Moretti are the two most well-known Italian beer brands.
Do Any Italian Beers Feature In The Little Book of Beer?
No, The Little Book of Beer features only beers made in the USA.
Is Stella Artois An Italian beer?
No, Stella Artois isn’t an Italian beer. It is a Belgian beer that was first produced in Leuven in Belgium.
What Is The Most Popular Beer In Italy?
The beer that is consumed the most throughout Italy is Peroni.
Peroni alone is responsible for 14% of the beer consumed in Italy that’s a lot when you consider all the other brands’ alternatives available.
What Kind of Beer Is Peroni?
Peroni Nastro Azzuro an lager-style beer. It is a refreshing beer with a lot of flavors and an Italian design.
It is one of the most loved beers available in Italy and for good reason. It is an elegant beer made with high quality.
What Is The Difference Between Peroni Red and Peroni Nastro Azzuro?
Peroni Red is a slightly darker-colored beverage compared to Peroni Nastro Azzuro.
It has more distinct hops and malty characteristics and is packed with fruity and floral notes, providing a smooth soft, silky, and refreshing finish.
Last updated and verified on January 28th, 2023 by our editorial team.