Colombian Drinking Games

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I’ve spent the past week in Colombia, mostly road biking and backpacking in the country’s national parks testing gear (look for full reviews next week), but I’ve also had some opportunities to explore Colombia’s beer culture. The craft beer scene is in its infancy down here, and doesn’t have the depth of craft beer in the U.S. Few countries do. The only craft beer option I could find was from the Bogota Beer Company, which has a number of brewpubs all over the Colombia. If you’re ever down here, seek out their Roja, a balanced amber.

But even if you never set foot in Colombia, there’s plenty we can learn from our South American friends. First of all, why the hell don’t we have these personal tap systems in bars in the U.S.?

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It’s called a “giraffe,” and it holds something like three liters of beer. The waitress puts it right there on your table. It’s like your own personal tap. And it’s beautiful. You finish a pint, you just pour yourself another one. You don’t have to get up. You don’t have to raise your hand and try to catch the waitress’ attention…you are the master of your own destiny.

The second thing I’d like to import from Colombia is the drinking game, Rana. It’s like cornhole, but so much better.

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So, there’s a box with holes in it and three frogs. You get some metal discs, stand about 12 feet away from the box, and try to throw those discs into the holes and frogs mouth. Get a disc into the mouth of a frog, and it’s 100 points. Hit one of the holes on the side, and it’s 15 points, or 40 points, or more or less, depending on the hole. It’s a simple game, but it’s addictive as hell. I think the trick is in the wrist, kind of like with horseshoes. Also, the more you drink, the better you get. Like horseshoes.

I’m an amateur at it now, but I’d like to think that with the right amount of training, I could really up my game. And that’s what traveling is all about—absorbing tiny pieces of foreign culture to become a more well-rounded individual.

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