After La Tropical's private re-launch party this week, craft beer-lovers can expect to see La Tropical's “La Original ”amber lager, "Nativo Key” Suave IPA and “Tropiflaca” lite lager distributed in cans and on draft at local restaurants, bars and supermarkets throughout Tampa Bay.
Tampa will be the first city outside of Miami to get a taste of La Tropical's revamped brews, which haven't been in town since its Ybor City brewery closed in 1961. La Tropical's "welcome back" party takes place at Florida Brewing Co.'s former building in Ybor City—the first brewery in the Sunshine State to be granted its brewing license back in 1896.
La Tropical, with its factory in historic Ybor City, maintained strong ties between Cuba and Florida until the revolution in 1959. After Cuban companies were nationalized and the United States enacted its embargo on Cuba (which is still in place today), La Tropical could no longer able to manufacture its beer on the Caribbean island. The embargo, in addition to competition from other beer brands, contributed to the shutdown of Ybor City brewery in 1961, ending 65 years of production.
The beer was first brewed in Cuba in 1888, towards the tail end of the Spanish-American war. Its website states that by 1958, La Tropical produced 60% of beer on Cuba.
For more information on La Tropical's deep history and upcoming return to Tampa Bay, head to its website cervecerialatropical.com.