Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Bottled Bia Hanoi

My beer of choice these days is Bia Hanoi, well, because we live in Hanoi. It's like if you were to live in St. Louis - if you have any sense of civic pride, you drink Bud. Bia Hanoi is only brewed in one local brewery, which I pass on the commute every day.

I usually drink my Bia Hanoi in a can, as opposed to the draft Hanoi Beer (Bia Hoi Ha Noi) that is very popular. So popular that there is a Vietnamese language wiki on it. Who knew?

The other day we were at the local grocer to stock up. Bia Hanoi in a can, 6000 VND. Bia Hanoi in a bottle, 7500 VND. Cans are 330ml, bottles are 450ml. As a consumate comparison shopper I see that the bottles are cheaper, so I load some up.

It's a pretty nice discount; drinking out of bottles is better than cans; 'having to finish' 450ml is better than downing 330 and going back for another.. what's the catch?

Curious, I spoke to the checkout woman and she told me that the bottles have a 3k VND deposit on them. She also laughed a bit at me cause she wasn't sure I understood. Am I really gonna lug empties back to the store? How good is the factory really with the sterilization? Do want to think about the latter while trying to enjoy a beer?

Ah, forget the discount, I paying premium to have a clear mind while attempting to cloud it with liquid sustenance.

[edit: on a more recent shopping trip the cans are actually 7k VND and the bottles are 7.5K VND. Darn, I really should go the glass bottle route.]