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Beer (and wine) in Quercy (Lot)


Merchien pigeonierDavid & Sarah Meakin at the Domaine du Merchien at Belfort-du-Quercy (46 Lot, Occitanie) have already demonstrated their prowess at making some excellent Coteaux du Quercy wines – and are now branching out to produce Quercy beers – some English-style beers, including:-
a Porter Stout (bière noire) “a dark and very rich beer with six different types of grain and two types of hops Fuggles and Goldings producing a complex taste – strength 6.5%”
an India Pale Ale (IPA) (bière blonde) “a traditional British beer with a light colour, a strong hop taste – strength 5.4%”
and a Bitter (bière dorée)“Light Bitter or light ale for those long summer days and evenings uses Fuggles, Goldings and Progress hops – strength 4.3%”

It will be interesting to see if the local French population take to these beers – French beer tends to be a light refreshing and fizzy lager style – although in recent years you do see more of some of the stronger and darker beers (Leffe for example, which is Belgian) – and certainly in the north there are an increasing number of micro-breweries. However, initially I suspect the Meakin’s market will be the expatriates and summer tourists – especially as they plan to sell the beer (and wine) at local Sunday markets in Limogne-en-Quercy( 46 Lot, Occitanie) and St Antonin-Noble-Val (82 Tarn-et-Garonne, Occitanie).

Although a little off the beaten track the Domaine is well worth a visit, situated on the “Causse” the sprawling high moorland south of Cahors, not far off the N20 and the A20 autoroute. Their wines are veru good (forget the local Cahors sytle – these are quite different, using mainly Gamay, Cabernet Franc and Merlot with the more local and tannic Cot (Malbec) and Tannat grapes in supporting roles).

See their website at http://www.merchien.com

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  • Update on the beer
    After understanding what the French market was looking for, we now sell a good 90% to French customers many of which are local and with the increased interest in the beer,three shops now stock it,we have found it difficult to keep up with demand!! We also belived ,like the piece above, that a large part of our sales would be ex -pat and tourists this has not proved to be the case!

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