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Cacique

Rating: 2.25

Another beer that I had been on the look out for on my recent trip to Cuba, this is a beer that I’d seen a couple of pictures of before arriving in the country and then spotted the odd empty can of sitting on the beach on day in the country but locating a can to buy proved more troublesome. After trying numerous ‘peso shops’ over the course of my first week in Cuba, I finally stumbled across this one for sale in a bar on the main street in Cienfugos and quickly wondered in to buy a can. I thought when I’d seen the few old cans lying about in Cuba that they were faded as a result of sitting in the sun too long but as it happens, every can of Cacique has quite a faded look to it which make the beer seem even cheaper than it actually is. The beer is yet another from Cerveceria Bucanero, my fifth in total from the brewery and very likely my last from them for some time since they only brew one or two others and with the exception of Cristal and Bucanero Fuerte, none appear to be exported out of the country.

cacique

Appearance (2/5): Quite a bright looking beer, this one is a yellow to straw colour in the glass and has a lot of bubbles rising to the surface as well. The head is a thin, half centimetre one that is bone white and bubbly looking with fairly poor retention that results in most of it disappearing after about thirty seconds to leave a tiny bit of lacing around the edges of the glass.
Aroma (4/10): A relatively weak beer on the nose, this one opens with a somewhat skunky aroma initially before being backed up by a combination of corn and vegetable adjuncts. There was some maize and cheap lager malts coming through around the middle and there was a faint touch of citrus in there too to see things out. This one was pretty much what I’d been expecting from a local Cuban beer, it was definitely lacking in a lot of areas and was quite bland on the nose.
Taste (4/10): Opening with some lager malts and a slight citrus tang, there was thankfully a little more to the taste that there was with the nose but it still wasn’t a great one. I got some corn adjuncts and a cereal like taste that also featured some bread malts but very little else. It wasn’t an offensive tasting beer at least and the skunky flavours were kept to a minimum but it was definitely quite bland and a little boring at times.
Palate (3/5): Quite a light and thin beer, this one was quite a basic and cheap offering that seemed bland for the most part. There was a faint citrus tang coming through at times and these were just about the highlight of the beer, there was also some standard adjunct type flavours and a subtle, almost earthy bitterness nearer the end. The beer also proved to be quite a clean and crisp one too which helped it down some.

Overall (9/20): Definitely a cheap and basic one but then that was exactly what I was expecting from this one going in, especially considering it isn’t one of the main ‘tourist beers’ in Cuba and therefore the quality was always likely to be worse; the fact that every can of the stuff also looks quite faded doesn’t help its case either. That being said, the beer was actually a little better than I’d imagined (in a strange sort of way) and despite being a bland, basic offering it was easy to drink and refreshing at the same time. It’s not a beer I’d pick up again outside of Cuba other than for the novelty of it but it was an okay beer when judged against other cheap pale lagers.

Brewed In: Holguín, Cuba
Brewery: Cerveceria Bucanero
Type: Pale Lager
Abv: 4.5%
Serving: Can (355ml)
Purchased: Complejo La Princesa, Cienfugos
Price: 20 CUP (approx. £0.63)

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