Video: Nicolas Lescieux of l’Échappée Bière, one of the organisers of the Bière a Lille (BAL), talks about the growth of craft beer in France and takes us on a walk among some of the brewers.
Lille, France is a beautiful city and I love going there for the annual Grande Braderie de Lille in September, when one of the biggest flea markets in the world takes of the city’s centre. But my mission in November was to get a sampling of the French craft beer scene at the annual Bière a Lille (BAL),
There I met Nicolas Lescieux of l’Échappée Bière, and one of the organisers of the festival. He took me on a walk among the brewers (see the video above).
The festival 9-10 November at Gare Saint-Sauveur capped off a week of beer festivities at the city’s bars, where the craft beer scene is exploding.Over the two days, brews from 72 brewers originating from France and another 16 countries are poured. Around 25 of the stands are set up by one of France’s big beer distributors, but that does not take away from the fact that great brews are present in the gigantic building.
Thirteen of them were from the Lille region, 10 from the Hauts-de France region, and another 27 from the rest of France. These included some well known names, such as Hoppy Road, Ninkasi, and Piggy Brewing. But there was also the newer brewers such as Effect Pappillon from the Gironde region, and Le Singe Savant from Lille.
The international representation was incredible, with Omnipollo, Pohjala, Founders, Uiltje, Siren, Wild Beer and Pohjala, for example. All in all a festival to revisit next year to see the next progression in the French beer scene.
Photos: Bière a Lille (BAL)