Years ago, while working as a newspaper writer and reviewer in North Carolina, I was asked by a friend with another newspaper to compose my list of all-time favorite movies. This was going to be in print, with my name attached, so I got borderline obsessive about it; revised it maybe fifty times, and still wasn’t satisfied. So, in frustration, late one evening, I got up and poured some Scotch in a glass and called up my best friend, a noted music reviewer. I told him how crazy I was getting and he said, “Don’t think. That’ll tie you up in knots. Just think of the movies that pop into your head most often; the ones that stay with you and keep challenging you. There’s your list.” And he was right. Using that method, I did the list in twenty minutes and would stand by it to this day.
I’ve been trying, for the past ten months or so, to get to all the little tasks that readers have been asking for in emails since this bloglet debuted in may of 2009…but this is the Big Enchilada. More than any other single request, “What do you think are the best beers in the US?” has been a solid Numero Uno, practically since the beginning. It’s sometimes even tucked away at the end of another subject, as with this one from PollyEnna30:
“…maybe you could recommend some Imperial Stouts that I could try, that aren’t too bitter and heavy? And. maybe, what are your favorite beers, period?”
I haven’t counted the requests, as I have with others that are more searchable, but they’ve been constant. I got one today:
“Hey, did I miss your Top Beers List? For America, I mean? I searched it every way I could think of and all I got was your Best of The Northwest, which does me no good, since I’m in New Jersey.”
So, finally, here it is. This is the list as of today, Sunday, November 9th, in rainy Seattle, after going to the Seahawks vs. the Giants…which means I’ve eaten tailgate food and may well be fat-addled. But, as lists of this type go, I’ll be delighted to stand by this one. Some of the names will be unfamiliar to you, since I live in one of the states that’s produced the least packaged beer for broad distribution of any of the top five major beer states. (Colorado, California, Oregon, Washington, Michigan) But, in the attempt to be completely honest, those obscure beers you’ll find here do actually stand toe-to-toe with any beers of their types made my those breweries that get all the awards and critical buzz. You’d just have to try them to see for yourself and, short of traveling to the brewery, you may be outta luck.
As always, please remember this:
The naked Truth with ANY list of the “Best Of” is that the beers mentioned are One Guy’s Opinion. You won’t agree with all of them; maybe none of them. And that’s as it should be.As one smart-ass friend of mine, here in Seattle, said to me today, “One man’s ‘best” is another man’s drain pour.” Irritating but precise. The reason I resisted doing this for so long is that I think lists are largely crap. But people like lists and my refusal to do it started to seem sorta perverse, to me; ungracious, at very best. So, I just sat and thought of all the beers that haunt me; that pop into my head at odd moments…and doing it became a lot easier, quickly.
Last Note: Don’t waste your time and mine in telling me anything on this list is “wrong”. Taste is subjective and there is no such thing as right or wrong. If you want to suggest a beer I left out, great. But, like it or not, out of what I’ve tasted in the past two years, this is my 25…with some that are just bubbling under.
These, then, are The Pour Fool’s “America’s Top Twenty-Five”
(IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER)
Deschutes “The Abyss” Imperial Stout: C’mon, now, did you really expect me to compile a list of the best beers in America and not include The Abyss? I’ve made no secret of the fact that I consider this one of the top two or three beers in the world and my own favorite Stout…but there are ambitious contestants for that crown, lately. Dark, impossibly rich, hideously complex, near-perfect…just a True Classic of American Brewing. Right behind/beside it, though, are…
Lost Abbey “Serpent” Stout: I don’t spend nearly enough time telling people how hysterically effin’ great Tomme Arthur is. Suffice it to say, if I was asked to carve my own Mt. Rushmore Of Brewers, he’d be on there with Sam Calagione, Larry Sidor, Tonya Cornett, and about twelve other people. (It would be a pretty crowded monument) The only problem with naming this elegantly sinister concoction, though, is that it makes it look like I’m saying this is better than The Angel’s Share or Red Poppy or Deliverance or Cuvee de Tomme. Which it is NOT, except in terms of my Wanna. Dry as the Sahara, inky, dense…this is the ale that House of Slytherin would use for its Alumni Beer Bash.
River North “Avarice” Belgian-Style Imperial Stout: God Almighty…I was standing at the bar at River North when I tasted this and I saw all my dead relatives and Amelia Earhart and can now tell you where Jimmy Hoffa is buried. This stuff was such a stunning surprise that I literally ran out to the car and told my Gorgeous Domestic Partner, “You GOTTA taste this!” The description promised what all the other Belgian-style Stouts did: those hallmark yeast notes of tropical fruit, bubble gun, bananas, cloves and yadda-yadda-yadda. I’d tasted about twenty of ’em, at that point and none was an unqualified success. But this was dry, balanced, elegant, showing the yeast character as grace notes, instead of a marching band. Texture like rich coffee, complex and palate-coating…an obscure masterpiece!
Perennial Barrel Aged “Abraxas”: Similar story to the RiNo, I got a bottle of this via UPS, cracked it without having read a word about it, and took ONE sip. Holy Cats! A near-literal explosion of every Dark Charm I look for in a great Stout – chocolate, molasses, coffee, figs, fudge, caramel, vanilla, smoke, wood, licorice…you name it, it’s lurking in the bottomless depths of Abraxas. The texture is pure hedonism: silky and viscous and yet not ponderous. This was yet another delightful shock and has now put St. Louis squarely on my “Must Revisit” list.
Upright Brewing Oyster Stout: I swooned hard the first time I tasted this and it’s even better, now, five years later. Good Lord, does it Work: oysters and their liquor injected into a base ale of a brilliant, black, road tar-colored Stout and then barrel aged. Lots of breweries have tried it but most have missed. As I’ve said many times before, if something is called an infused ale, I want to taste that infusion without needing a GPS and bloodhounds to find it. Here, the briny, meaty oyster character is front ‘n’ center; bottled evidence of why Stout and oysters are one of the food world’s greatest pairings. Brilliant ale from a real under-the-radar Rock Star brewery.
Logsdon Peche ‘n’ Brett: Ripe, fresh peaches are crammed into every available square inch of the tanks for this mind-bending ale. Most peach-flavored anything I taste – except for, y’know, peaches – come off a bit artificial or stale. This is vibrant and the uber-funked Brett character adds a compellingly-earthy chewiness and breadth to this beer. In it’s short life, P’n’B has become a wildly sought-after Northwest cult fave and I freely admit to using my beer trade connections to get my own supply, each release. It is easily, IMHO, the single best Brett ale ever made in the Pacific Northwest and is rivaled only by what Paul Arney is producing at The Ale Apothecary for stylistic uniqueness and substance. What former Full Sail brewer and founder of Wyeast Labs, Dave Logsdon, is doing on his remote farmstead outside of Hood River, OR, is changing the face of Northwest and American brewing.
The Alchemist “Heady Topper”: I can’t possibly say anything about this stuff that hasn’t already been said, so I’ll just add this: YES, by golly, it actually IS that freakin’ good! As opposed to the former Universal Crush, Pliny The Elder, Heady shows a magnificent balance of its parts, while sparing nothing at all in its hoppy smack-down of your taste buds. Where Pliny was quite accurately described to me by one Denver beer geek as “lickin’ a pine tree”, Heady is a smidge of the tree with some spruce tips and rosemary tossed in, and some chewy, light-caramel malts that show toasted bread, nuts, and ample citrus. It’s wildly drinkable, complete, and impossible to resist. Best beer in America? I’d maybe dispute that but…in the conversation? Definitely!
Three Floyds “Zombie Dust” APA: I unabashedly love Three Floyds. Love ’em…but maybe not for the reason you’d think. It’s not for Dark Lord, although the thought of that ale makes me light-headed. It’s because they have this tremendous rep in craft brewing and seem to have never gotten the memo that says that big-deal breweries are supposed to make Pale Ales mostly for reference. 3Fs tries to make great Pales…and they By God do it! Zombie is flawless. Along with Deschutes Red Chair, Maine Beer Co’s MO, and the Tamarack Pale Ale you’ll find below, ZD is the new standard for what is possible with an American Pale Ale. It’s stunningly complete, much like their collabo with Gigantic Brewing, “Axes of Evil”. It’s substantial, chewy, malty, hoppy – make that HOPPY – nicely complex, and just bursting with flavors.
Laurelwood “Workhorse” IPA: This ale became the Northwest’s IPA icon about two seconds after it hit the palates of all us Northwest IPA fans and it’s never wavered a millimeter. Zesty, relentlessly refreshing, beautifully bitter and immaculately balanced, it’s a virtual template for how to make a crowd-pleasing yet “serious” basic IPA. The sheer straight-forward appeal of its flavor profile hides a wonderful complexity and depth, making it a beer that the most devout HopHeads can enjoy and admire, right along side of the greenest newbies. Consistent, wildly drinkable, available(!), and Cool, Workhorse is, to me, one of these beers that comes as close as is humanly possible to Perfect.
Hair of The Dog “Adam From The Wood”: One of the true American Classic ales, Alan Sprints’ signal achievement – out of many in his legendary career – is as close as any beer in America comes to being universally admired. HopHeads love its aggressive bite. History buffs love its roots. Strong Ale and Barleywine fans love its muscle and balance and stunning creativity. And this barrel-aged version – with a realistic life-expectancy rivaling the world’s great red wines – is its highest expression. This is gorgeous, game-changing ale, the kind of beer that makes you remember where you were, who you were with, what you were wearing, and what music was playing when you first Experienced it. If you claim to be a craft beer geek and have never tasted it, you DO NOT deserve that title.
Sound Brewery “Monk’s Indiscretion”: This is one of the three inclusions on this list for which I’m going to hear calls of “Homer!“. In each case, I absolutely stand behind the choice. This stylistically non-specific Belgian-style ale marries the yeast-driven fruitiness of a big Saison or Witbier with the caramel and spices of a Red/Amber. It’s one of the most purely delicious beers that I have ever tasted. This is lively, ridiculously complex, damnably easy to drink, and has already proven its amazing adaptability with several barrel-aged variations, the most notable a Gin barreled miracle called “Monk’s Gindiscretion”. This is a certifiably brilliant ale and one of the Northwest’s true stand-outs.
Cigar City White Oak “Jai Alai” IPA: This indescribably delicious can of IPA has been aged in white oak barrels, which would normally give it a nice, toasty vanilla character and, if that’s all it had, it would still be an outstanding basic IPA. But…Holy Cats, what the hell happened in those barrels? This is one of the two or three most unusual beers – of any style – that I’ve ever tasted and it very nearly defies description. Coconut cream pie with dark caramel sauce – THAT’S what this tastes like! And, trust me, if you’re frequently frustrated with tasting notes and find that you can’t detect what the reviewer says is there, you will have NO such problem here. That coconut cream caramel is stated without more than a hint of sweetness, is followed immediately by figs, pears, and buttermint, and marries beautifully with big floral/citrus hops. I could drink this stuff all day and would…if CCBC would quit screwing around and find a Washington distributor.
Crux Fermentation Project “Freakcake” Oud Bruin Ale: If I had to name a favorite beer on this list, it would be a toss up with five or six others but this would probably win out. I can’t even begin to tell you how much I love this stuff. Aside from – maybe – one or two actual Belgian Ales I’ve tasted, this is the best ale made in the Oud Bruin genre that I’ve ever tasted. I reviewed this back in December of last year and still daydream about it. As I said then, “…a Cognac-like depth and opulence that fanned out on my tongue like ink, delivering barrel-driven vanilla, smoke, and red berries with notes of candi sugar, fruitcake, red currants, roasted nuts, dried figs, bread pudding, and a wonderfully boozy intensity that recalled a great Barleywine, without a trace of excess.” If that sounds scrumptious...IT IS. Larry Sidor, Crux brewmaster, is well known to serious craft fans as the long-time brewmaster at Deschutes and, as it turns out, he was just warming up there. Freakcake is, IMHO, the single best American Belgian-style ale ever made. If you doubt that, just Try It.
Bell’s “Hop Slam” Double IPA: With six different hops in the brew kettle and a whoppin’ dry-hop addition of Simcoes, Hop Slam could just be a one-note Resin Fest…but Bell’s values balance, which is why I value Bell’s. A fat, sumptuous malt bill gives this hoppy wonder a sweet-ish backbone of caramels and toasted bread and roasted nuts and figs and…WOW! If you have a wonky side, you can sit and mine this ale for flavors and grace notes for a solid hour as it warms but I’m betting that, like me, you’ll be totally seduced by the sheer, undeniable drinkability of it. If Bell’s never made another beer, this would still cement their reputation. As it is, Bell’s is such a profound cornucopia of outstanding ales that this is just the best of a landslide of Earthly Pleasures.
Crooked Stave “Surette Reserva” (Chardonnay Barrel): A Limited Edition from the other-worldly Crooked Stave, this Surette is funkier than a Kool & The Gang concert but mellowed out nicely by aging in some well-soaked Chardonnay barrels that give it a sweet/tart tanginess and almost stately feel. I first tried this while in Denver for GABF and I don’t think I have ever nursed a six ounce glass of beer that long in my life. (My nipples ached for days!) It was so odd and so different and so undeniably delicious that I just didn’t want it to end. White grapes play off light nuttiness and a lovely yellow apple character, with a huge wallop of earthy brett funk that recalls a horse blanket lying in a bed of hay. It’s a fascinating ale and, even for those who drink sours and bretts regularly and love the style, it’s going to be whole different experience. Chad Yakobsen and his crew can make a serious claim to the title of Best Brewery in America and this could easily be their thesis paper.
Kuhnhenn Bourbon Barrel “Fourth Dementia”: 13.5% alcohol, almost NO heat at all, complexity rivalling differential calculus, and a freakish smoothness that seems impossible upon first sip, 4D is one of those barreled ales that’s not just about the barrel but about an ale as master of the barrel it came from. This is stunning stuff; so shockingly good and flatly delicious that it made me, at first, think, “Okay, what the trick?” BIG Bourbon, vanilla, wood, cashews, Demerara sugar, maple syrup, Brandied raisins, caramel, sweet dark fruits, malt, and vanilla are just what I got in the first 30 seconds and after that…well, I ain’t stupid. I just unhooked my brain and enjoyed! This is a wildly appealing Strong Ale with an shocking complexity and nearly irresistible charm that takes zero advanced beer knowledge to appreciate.
Boneyard “Notorious” Triple IPA: Staggering…immense, behemoth, stunning: pick your adjective. I don’t believe for a second that any brewery, anywhere, has ever created a massive – almost an extreme – IPA that delivers hops impact of this scale and yet remains so amazingly drinkable that you could serve it to a craft newbie and have at least a 50/50 chance that they’d love it from the git-go. The hops, of course, take center stage but there’s a fine and firm backbone of chewy malts behind it that manages to sorta tame the Ravening Resin Beast. I’ve become the sworn enemy of ridiculous “test of manhood” extreme IPAs, over the past few years, but the freakishly fine appeal of RPM and Hop Venom made trying this mandatory and, man, am I glad I did. This is a modern Masterpiece and among the best Imperial IPAs ever made.
Great Divide “Old Ruffian” Barleywine: As a certified, card-carrying Barleywine Freak, I’ve tasted every blessed one I could find for the past 20+ years, and had almost come to the conclusion, at several points, that it’s just not possible to bottle this style of ale without losing what makes them so special. But Great Divide – which already made me eat my words after saying the same thing about Imperial Stouts – dispensed with that prejudice within two seconds of this entering my pie-hole, one blustery November day, at their Denver taproom. No, it is NOT built like a traditional British Barleywine but it carries that feel and completeness, just on a far larger scale. Fruitcake, roasted nuts, a boozy warmth, dates, caramel, Brandied cherries, horehound candy, fruit leathers, and big, edgy hops give this immense muscle while sacrificing zero charm and nuance. Make no mistake, this is not for the faint of heart…but for any veteran Barleywine freak like me, this is the Amber-Golden Grail of American-style BWs.
Jack’s Abbey Barrel-Aged “Framinghammer” Baltic Porter: “Porter”…Ah, that very word makes me thirsty! I’m a Porter geek from way back and I like ’em big and strappin’, like a junior varsity Stout. Great Lakes “Edmund FItzgerald”, Snoqualmie “Steam Train”, Speakeasy “Prohibition”, Deschutes “Black Butte”…there’s no shortage of great ones but, over the past five years, there’s been a glut, at least on my tasting table,of really flaccid, ordinary ones. So it was that, when I sat down to taste Framinghammer, I had few expectations…which made it all the more shocking. It was simply…Perfect. It’s sweet, of course, as are all Baltics, and the style lends itself beautifully to Americanization; that up-scaling of proportions in weight, depth, and viscosity. Rich coffee, molasses, dark chocolate AND milk chocolate, anise, prunes, dates, vanilla, coconut, figs, citrus, and black cherries give it Stout-like weight, while assertive hops give it a lovely Edginess – and the damned stuff is a LAGER! This is an astounding beer; one that defies accurate description. Do yourself a favor and find it, taste it, and see if you don’t absolutely love it.
Ninkasi “Tricerahops” Double IPA: Ninkasi brewmaster, Jamie Floyd, is a big goofball who seems to take only one thing dead-seriously: brewing. And that, he does so well that he’s become one of the country’s most respected young brewers and a frequent, enthusiastic collaborator for a bewildering number of breweries and individuals. Those who know Ninkasi know of their uncanny, unfailing quality across the board, from light beers to pitch-black Darks but the real gem of their catalog is this stuff, a flamboyant, vivid, impossibly-delicious bottle of tangerines and pear butter and Asian spices and sugar cookies and wildflowers and tropical fruit galore, all leading to a divinely-inspired gamut of hops that run the spectrum, from savory herbs to citrus peels to spruce/pine bitterness. MY own favorite DIPA, Tricerahops never gets old, never disappoints, and never has been surpassed by any DIPA I’ve ever tasted.
Wild Earth Brewing “Tamarack Pale Ale”: Okay, right here is where the accusations of “Homer!” begin. Wild Earth just opened on the day the Seahawks won the Super Bowl, in february of 2014. It’s located in Roslyn, Washington, which is famous only for having been the location set for the legendary TV series, “Northern Exposure”. The town is smaller than Imelda Marcos’ shoe closet and Wild Earth is easily the most obscure brewery on this list. Most beer lovers in Seattle have never heard of it. But brewer/owner Dave Kilgour came to Roslyn from Maine and New Hampshire and apparently brought some of that Allagash/Smuttynose mojo with him because, since the moment I first tasted this flat-out brilliant American Pale Ale, I knew damned well that, if I actually did this list, I had a real Problem. NOBODY is going to believe that some guy in a 900 square-foot microbrewery in rural Roslyn could make a beer that would rival Mirror Pond and MO and Zombie Dust and Axes of Evil and Sierra Nevada Pale Ale…but he has. This is Sex In A Bottle: gorgeous malts, drenched in malted milk and toffee and whole-grain toast and pears and fig jam, meld seamlessly with bright, citrusy hops and a tangy resin bite that’s exactly in scale. It is absurdly smooth and as beautifully balanced as any beer I’ve ever tasted. As of this writing, Dave isn’t distributed anywhere but right around Roslyn, Cle Elum, Ellensburg, Yakima and some points in between. If you visit Washington, you’ll love Roslyn, anyway, even if Wild Earth wasn’t there but with it, that sleepy setting where Doctor Joel wooed Maggie O’Connell is now a Beer Destination, as word of this and Dave’s other stunning brews gradually seeps out. Of all the APA-style ales I’ve ever tasted, Tamarack is really only seriously rivaled by one beer: Deschutes “Red Chair” and, on any given day, I’d have a hard damned time trying to say which one is better.
Cascade Barrelhouse “The Vine”: On a grey March evening in 2012, I first sat in Cascade’s taproom on Portland’s eastside and, on a whim, ordered The Vine. It was another of those signal experiences that sticks in the memory for the total shock and awe that resulted. I’d tasted, by that time, quite a few sours, many European, of course, but quite a few American ones, too, from names like Lost Abbey and Russian River and Jolly Pumpkin…but none of those prepared me for this: tart, vivid, expressive, and Different – completely different. Cascade describes their beers as “NW sours”, a category that really didn’t exist before they decided to invent it. They age this stuff in oak barrels for 12 months before extended aging on freshly-pressed white grape must before bottling. The result is a soft, appealing layer of overt fruitiness behind the sour; a cotton-candy impression, gilded with grace notes like anise and those sultanas and buttermint and sweet herbs. This is a Game Changing ale; one that is as unlike what went before it as a 2014 Volvo is to an Edsel. This will be the very devil to find…unless you want to order it from the brewery, which, happily, does ship!
Maine Beer Company “MO” Pale Ale: Along with the above-mentioned Zombie Dust, Deschutes Red Chair, Wild Earth Tamarack, Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, and Deschutes Mirror Pond, this has to be considered as a serious contender for the title “Best Pale Ale In America”. You may never have seen it (They, too, do NOT have much distribution on the West Coast) but it is as flawless, sumptuous, and compulsively drinkable a Pale as has ever been brewed within our borders. The basics – chewy, agreeable, mellow malts and a punchy stratum of resiny hops – are both there, naturally, and this is NOT one of those modern Pales that the brewery has decided to turn into a HO Scale IPA. This is about Balance, Judgment, Knowing When To Quit and these Mainers can teach us all about that. Golden cereals, toasted wheat bread, three or four varied citrus peel notes, buttermint, sweet herbs, and a lovely suspicion of coconut(!) round out the flavors, giving MO something Pales almost never have: complexity. They could call it Curly or Larry, if they wanted; whatever the name, this is one of America’s iconic Pale Ales.
Almanac “Valley of The Heart’s Delight”: Just…beautiful; like a sunny California sunrise, bottled and served Cool. Almanac recently made the decision to go all sour/brett, a move which would scare me if some other breweries did it but, for them, makes me do a little Happy Dance. Their Sourdough Ale is probably my favorite to just sit and sip but this beauty is so undeniably unique and special that it steals all the spotlight. It’s NOT as aggressively sour as many current sours, a category which, WILL, without doubt, devolve into another of those stupid arms races like extreme IPAs did. But this almost defiantly goes in the opposite direction. Soft, pretty notes of apple cider, ripe pears, tropical fruits, gummy bears, apricots, white grapes, baking spices, and a firm but pliable sourness that flatters the beer instead of whacking you out. Almanac is absolutely killin’ it, these days, and this is an excellent choice for any newbie who wants to ease into the world of sours without getting bit too hard.
Anchorage Brewing “A Deal With The Devil” Barleywine: Gabe Fletcher chooses to live in Alaska, for a LOT of good reasons…but he’s nobody’s fool. He’s made a real effort to get his beers down to the Lower 48 and they hit the mainland like a smart bomb. Anchorage’s beers are just different. Style by style, they don’t taste like anybody else’s and I don’t know why, except that they may have to improvise more – not being within easy shipping distance of some ingredients they might need – and , undoubtedly, because of Gabe Fletcher’s brain; a strange and wonderful Neverland where odd-duck Notions turn into beautiful swans – that you can drink! Deal is smooooth, complete, and even subtle, delivering its cornucopia of fruitcake and fig and Brandy-ish booziness and dried fruits and molasses in an easy-to-understand profile that invites (make that “compels”) each successive sip. This is a prodigious American Barleywine and one that fans of the style CANNOT miss.
THE NEXT 25…OR SO…
21st Amendment “Hop Crisis” / Black Diamond “Rampage” / Deschutes “Hop Trip” / Pelican Brewing “The Mother of All Storms” / The Bruery “Black Tuesday” / AleSmith “Speedway” Stout / Stone “Lukcy Basartd” / Reuben’s Brews “Blimey, That’s Bitter!” / Three Taverns “A Night in Brussels” / Wicked Weed “Dissident” IPA / Cigar City “Hunahpu’s” / Lawson’s “Double Sunshine” / Deschutes “Red Chair” / Green Flash “West Coast IPA” / AleWerks “Bitter Valentine” / Green Man “Snozzberry” / Jester King “Montmorency vs. Balaton” / La Cumbre “Project Dank” / Westbrook “Double Barrel Mexican Cake” / Dark Horse Bourbon Barrel Aged “Plead the 5th” / Founders “Backwoods Bastard” / Jolly Pumpkin “Biere de Mars – Grand Reserve” / Half Acre “Galactic Double Daisy Cutter” / Revolution Brewing “Unsessionable” / The Lost Abbey “Duck Duck Gooze” / Societe Brewing “The Pupil” / Lagunitas “Brown Sugga” / Odell “Myrcenary” / Great Divide “Hoss” / Upright “Engelberg” Pilsner / The Ale Apothecary “Sahalie” / Boneyard “Suge Knite” / Almanac “Sour Dough” Wild Ale / Old Schoolhouse “Ruud Awakening” / Fort George Rum Barrel “Cavatica” Stout / Burnside Brewing “Spring Rye” / Fort George “Tender Loving Empire” Northwest Pale Ale / Deschutes “Foray” Belgian IPA / Renegade Brewing “Bedwetter” Barleywine
I LOVE these top XX lists. Of course it is one man’s opinion, as you point out, but it gives me a shopping list of new things to look for and try, and often a bunch of new suppliers to bug my local beer store about.
Respectable list, lots of great beers on there so thanks for sharing.
Sound Brewery’s double IPA….”Humulo Nimbus” is awesome too!! Right up there with “Monk’s”!!!
Yep, if it were not in a stronger category than Monk’s, I could have listed it but it gets beat – by a hair – by Three Taverns “A Night in Brussels”.
Homer!!! Wild Earth IS THAT GOOD. Cheers