18 Must-Try Nepali Beers for Your Trip to Nepal

Visiting another country provides the opportunity to experience local brands and products not readily available elsewhere. While some find novelty in exploring foreign grocery stores, sampling regional beers holds particular interest given their influence by local culture and ingredients.

In Nepal, a wide selection of Nepali beers exists for discovering, some exclusive to the country. The variety surprised me despite Nepal’s size but highlights how integral beer features in cultural celebrations, which occur frequently.

This article explores several prominent Nepali beers and their distinguishing qualities, which may inspire curious visitors. Those prioritizing responsible enjoyment often favor Barahsinghe Dark Wheat, Gorkha Premium, or Everest.

Gorkha Beer (Gorkha Brewery)

Gorkha Beer is produced at Gorkha Brewery. Their flagship Gorkha Premium contains 5.0% alcohol while Gorkha Strong has 6.0%. Both debuted in 2006 and utilize high-quality hops, barley malt, and water. Gorkha Premium offers a smooth malt profile with low esters whereas Gorkha Strong has medium esters in a similar smooth malt character. Their name honors renowned Nepali warriors.

Barahsinghe (Yak Brewing Co.)

Barahsinghe Dark Wheat Craft and Barahsinghe Premium Strong Craft from Yak Brewing Co. have 6.0% alcohol. Brewed with imported malted barley, natural spring water, and hops, they exhibit a crisp, balanced flavor profile with a floral aroma and refreshing taste.

Kathmandu Premium (Himalayan Breweries)

Kathmandu Premium Lager by Himalayan Breweries contains 5.5% alcohol. Produced from natural spring water, Australian/European malts, and German/Czech hops aged over two weeks, it has a mellow, smooth character and clean crisp taste as Nepal’s first beer exported to the UK.

Namaste Classic Beer (Raj Brewery)

Namaste Classic Beer by Raj Brewery aligns with the German Purity Law by using only European ingredients and no additives/preservatives. With 5.5% alcohol, its malty fruitiness and balanced bitterness deliver a refreshing experience echoing its name meaning “the light in me salutes the light in you.”

Commando Super Strong Beer (Himalayan Breweries)

Commando, a strong ale from Himalayan Breweries, packs a 6.5% ABV punch. Natural spring water forms the base, brewed with a blend of Indian and Australian malts that hint at biscuit or caramel flavors. German hops add floral, herbal, or spicy notes, while Danish yeast may contribute subtle fruity esters. The result? A smoky malt character balanced by a smooth finish, making it surprisingly drinkable for a stronger beer. Aged for at least 10 days after fermentation, Commando offers a taste of Nepal’s brewing traditions.

Mountain Ice Premium Strong Beer (Raj Brewery)

Brewed with pure Himalayan water and European barley malt, Mountain Ice (6.5% ABV) is a strong lager for those seeking a refreshingly crisp experience. Raj Brewery uses a combination of European hops and rice to create a smooth, medium-bodied beer with a balanced bitterness and carbonation. The lack of added sugar, preservatives, and enzymes makes it a popular choice for those who appreciate a more natural taste.

Sherpa Khumbu Kolsch (Sherpa Brewery)

Paving the way for Nepal’s craft beer scene, Sherpa Khumbu Kolsch is a refreshing choice at 5% ABV. This light and easy-drinking Kolsch utilizes ale yeast, a departure from the typical lagers found in Nepal. Expect a crisp and clean taste with subtle hints of German hops in the aroma, making it a perfect beer for enjoying the Himalayan scenery.

Nepal Ice Beer (CG Brewery)

Since 2008, CG Brewery’s Nepal Ice has been a popular choice for Nepali beer drinkers. They offer three varieties:

  • Nepal Ice Premium (5.5% ABV): This light and refreshing lager boasts sweet malty aromas and a smooth, medium-bodied taste with balanced carbonation.
  • Nepal Ice Strong (7.0% ABV): Looking for a bolder option? Nepal Ice Strong packs a punch with its higher alcohol content while maintaining the signature sweet malt character and easy-drinking nature.
  • Nepal Ice Natura (5.5% ABV): A true innovator, Nepal Ice Natura takes the crown as the first all-barley beer in Nepal. Brewed with 100% barley instead of malt, it offers a unique taste experience for craft beer enthusiasts.

Everest Premium Lager Beer (Mt. Everest Brewery)

Reaching new heights since 2003, Everest Premium Lager Beer (5.0% ABV) is a refreshing lager with a touch of history. Released to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first summit of Mount Everest, it originally featured an image of Tenzing Norgay Sherpa, a legendary mountaineer. The aroma offers hints of malt, leading to a slightly bitter taste with a light to medium body – a perfect accompaniment to exploring Nepal’s wonders.

Mustang Premium Strong Beer (CG Brewery)

Adventure awaits in every sip of Mustang Premium Strong Beer (8.0% ABV) from CG Brewery. This bold brew is a tribute to Mustang, a remote region in Nepal known for its preserved culture. Once off-limits to foreigners, Mustang’s isolation has allowed its traditions to thrive. Mustang Premium Strong Beer reflects this unique heritage with a blend of imported malt, exotic hops, and pure water, resulting in a light-bodied beer with surprising apple undertones and a smooth, velvety mouthfeel.

Tensberg Premium Beer (Tiger Breweries)

Hailing from Tiger Breweries (established in 2014), Tensberg beers offer a distinct taste of Nepal.

  • Tensberg Premium (5.5% ABV): This brew starts with a malty aroma interwoven with toasty notes. The double dose of hops creates a unique interplay between bitterness and tartness, making it a refreshing and interesting choice.
  • Tensberg Strong (7.5% ABV): Looking for a bolder option? Tensberg Strong ups the ante with a 7.5% ABV. Despite its strength, it remains smooth and crisp, with an attractive amber color and a fluffy, creamy head.

Arna Beer (Yeti Brewery)

Yeti Brewery’s Arna beers cater to a range of preferences.

  • Arna Light (4.6% ABV): Perfect for health-conscious beer lovers, Arna Light is Nepal’s first and only low-calorie and low-carb beer. Brewed for 25% longer than standard beers, it achieves a refreshingly crisp taste without the extra calories.
  • Arna Premium (5.5% ABV): A go-to choice for many, Arna Premium offers a balanced and satisfying beer experience at 5.5% ABV.
  • Arna Strong (6.5% ABV): For those seeking a bolder brew, Arna Strong delivers a robust flavor at 6.5% ABV.

All Arna beers are crafted with malted barley, European hops, and the clean waters of the Himalayas.

Sherpa Himalayan Red (Sherpa Brewery)

Calling all hopheads! Sherpa Himalayan Red (5.0% ABV) is a full-bodied Extra Special Bitter (ESB) brewed with the finest 2-row malts, top-notch hops, and the crystal-clear waters of the Himalayas. Expect a pronounced malt character balanced by distinct bitterness and subtle hop notes, making it a satisfying choice for those who enjoy a bolder beer experience.

Iceberg Extra Strong Beer (Himalayan Breweries)

A true Nepali classic, Iceberg Extra Strong Beer (7.0% ABV) has been making waves since 1982. This strong beer boasts a dark color and a pronounced bitter taste, a testament to its high-quality ingredients – Indian and Australian malts, German hops, and pure Himalayan spring water from Kunakhola. German yeast contributes to its unique character, and a 7-day maturation period ensures a well-rounded flavor profile. This award-winning brew even claimed the Gold Medal – the Certifie quela Medaille D’Or by the Institut Inter’l Pour Les Selections de la Qualite in 1987.

Nepal Tiger Beer (Tiger Breweries)

Tiger Breweries (established in 2014) brings us Nepal Tiger (6.5% ABV), a well-balanced and smooth brew that’s a favorite among many. This medium-bodied beer is crafted with a unique blend of hops and barley, resulting in a satisfying taste with a hint of bitterness and surprising apple undertones. Nepal Tiger is a refreshing choice for exploring the wonders of Nepal.

Khukuri Premium Lager Beer (Gorkha Brewery)

Sharpen your taste buds for Khukuri Premium Lager Beer (4.7% ABV), brewed by Gorkha Brewery since 2003. Named after the iconic curved blade used by the Nepali army (khukuri), this medium-bodied and refreshing lager boasts a crisp finish. Expect subtle sweetness and fruity notes balanced by a light bitterness, making it a popular choice for easy drinking. Fun fact: Khukuri went on to win the prestigious Gold Monde Quality Award.

Shikhar Super Strong Beer (Yeti Brewery)

Adventure awaits in every sip of Shikhar Super Strong Beer (7.0% ABV) from Yeti Brewery. This robust brew packs a punch, offering a bold flavor profile for those who enjoy stronger beers. While details on the specific taste are unavailable, Shikhar Super Strong is sure to satisfy those seeking a more intense Nepali beer experience.

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