Official Publication of the St Lucia Hotel & Tourism Association
LA BIERE STE LUCIE
As omnipresent as the sweltering heat that envelops everything when disembarking from the air-conditioned comfort of an aircraft in St. Lucia, is the promise of immediate relief from the heat with a drink of the island’s local ‘Mountain Brew - Piton Beer’; guaranteed to quench the most stubborn of thirsts.
And if that does not convince you, that while in St. Lucia you should forsake your taste for all other lagers you have grown accustomed to, then as you drive around the country, small huts housing roadside bars proudly bearing the signature colours of the indigenous brand – yellow, white and blue entice you to ‘taste the secret’. Just dive into the country’s number one selling beer which in the last year alone sold close to half a million cases or nearly 12 million bottles! A clear indication of how popular the beer has become on the island after just 13 years in existence.
Piton Beer known in the local patois as La Bière Sent Lisi (The Beer of St. Lucia) was launched in 1992, at a time when nationalistic feelings and pride in all things St. Lucian was running at an all-time high — St. Lucian Derek Walcott had just received the Nobel Prize for
Literature, following in the footsteps of another St. Lucian, Sir Arthur Lewis who received the Nobel Prize for Economics 13 years earlier.
Since its launch, Piton beer named after St Lucia’s famous Twin Peaks, Petit Piton & Gros Piton, now a World Heritage Site, has become the pride and joy of St. Lucians, and is now deeply rooted in the culture and way of life of the local populace, capturing the vivid imagination of all who dare sample the “Mystic Mountain Brew “ .
“See the mountain, drink the beer” is the most recent tagline in the beer’s ‘in-your-face campaign’ by local brewers, Windward & Leeward Brewery Limited, an operating company of Heineken International B.V. Piton has won two Monde Selection International Beer Awards in Brussels& France. For the visitor its: “Taste the Secret” encourages one to
experience everything St. Lucian.
Meanwhile, one unwavering argument that is sure to brew every time local beer drinkers get together and one that is served up with bottles and bottles of beer, providing sustenance to the debaters, who often carry on sometimes way into the wee hours of the morning, is the superiority of Piton Beer versus any other. This is one argument that is actually taken very seriously, so unless one is given to public flagellation, silence should be observed as the golden rule.
So intrinsic has Piton Beer become to all things St. Lucian with the makers sponsoring major events like Carnival, Piton Party Stand Cricket, Community Days, and many other sporting and cultural activities around the island, that locals have adopted the beer’s logo as personal wear, on their heads, on T-shirts, skirts, shorts and even braiding their hair in the colours of the label – yellow, blue and white, also some of the major colours of the national flag.
So while in St. Lucia be sure to sample a Piton and enjoy the experience of a truly St. Lucian beer.
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