Beer Prices in Croatia 2018: A Cost-Conscious, Inebriated Guide To Getting Hammered

By 6 June 2018
Now listen, listenlistenlisten! This article required careful [hiccup] painstaking research.
Ey, brnterndner! Gimme 'nother to keep me company while I write this... What is this??? Ah yeah, the intro!
Sorry, wasn't s'ppose to type that. [hiccup]
Uhhh, where's the delete key? Whatever. Leave it.
Here's an article about how much beer will run ya in Croatia.
[high-fives self]
Nailed it.
Passing through on your first visit to Croatia and feeling a bit parched?
Could go for a beer but you're not sure if the price list in your hand is reasonable or a total ripoff?
We looked into the matter from a cozy little perch at a cafe on an island nobody's ever heard of. Most of it researched and written in real time.
[writer takes a swig of beer]
You probably can't even pronounce the names, right? Like, what the hell is a "Grička Vještica" anyway? Answer: It's a witch; in this case, a bottled, crafty witch casting a liquid spell that refreshes, eliminates thirst and...
[writer orders a Grička Vještica]
Guests used to choose between two mass-produced local brews, Ožujsko and Karlovačko, and a third brand name like Heineken or Becks.
[sip, aaahhhhh]
Things are different now. Croatia's blossoming craft beer scene offers variety, though the products haven't been developed well enough to provide consistent qualityThis beer-volution happened alongside a tourism boom, sparking inevitable price inflations. Some are worth it. Others, a ripoff.

[gulp gulp]

Still, expect to pay a baseline of about 20 kuna and higher for a bottle of craft beer. Note: You'll know it's a craft beer if its name isn't on the bar's refrigerators or parasols. Those usually advertise Ozujsko or Karlovacko. If you see Coca-Cola advertisements anywhere, in any form, leave immediately and find a real drinking hole.
The beer drinker's frothy conundrum gets worse when considering geographic variations in price. In short: The more glamorous the location, the higher the prices.
[gulp gulp gulp, orders another]
Ok, look. The maths here are simple. [hiccup] Assume the starting price for a pint (~.5L) of any draft lager is about 16 kuna. Many hours of research produced this figure. Don't question it.
Add about 15 percent to this baseline price if:
A) You're in a town featured in a high-end glossy travel magazine such as Travel + Leisure or Conde Naste Traveller.
B) You can see the Adriatic Sea from where you're sitting (add five percent if you spot a megayacht somewhere out on the water)
C) The cafe, bar or restaurant has a TripAdvisor sticker displayed somewhere near the entrance
D) You can't smell cigarette smoke
E) Your waiter speaks textbook English
That'll get you somewhere in the ballpark of whatever you'll pay for a beer.
By that math, a draft of the local hegemonic beer in tourist magnets like Dubrovnik comes at a base-level markup of up to...
[takes another swig, then scribbles several semi-inebriated attempts at grade-school level algebra on a napkin]
Comes at a markup of up to 55% per .1L of beer.
[bottoms-up, orders a different beer, immediately drinks it, orders another]
Meaning a half liter of basic lager in Dubrovnik will run you in the 30 kuna range, minimum... unless you're at some fancy schmancy [hiccup] seaside bar or cafe with a glamorous name attached to it. Then you'll probably face a serious markup.
Just know that the locals are quietly mocking you for paying more than 35 kuna for a half-liter of a paltry lager which sells for one-fifth the price at the grocery store.
In case you did shell out more than 50 kunas for a lager, you'd also be wise to notice there's probably very little Croatian being spoken among the other guests. Because basic economics means rrrrrrrrrrraaaaaa. What was I saying? No listen, wait.
[accidentally knocks over glass]
[Editor's note: The text at this point veered so far off topic we cut it from the piece. But we stand behind the basic maths. To wit:
3.2 kunas per .1L of draft beer, prices increasing with proximity to hotspots
20-40 kunas, sometimes higher, for craft beer
The writer also asked we mention he spent 96 kunas 'researching' the subject of this article. TCN will not be covering those as business expenses.]