Zymurgy Magazine asks its readers each year to rank their 20 favorite beers that are commercially available in the United States. Unsurprisingly, 15 of the top 20 beers are IPAs or Pale Ales. I don't disagree with most of the IPAs and Pale Ales on the list being amazing beers, but enough with the IPAs already, people. Expand your drinking repertoire, please. There is a whole wide world of beer out there that isn't all hop bombs.
Lists like these also make me wonder how many people out there actually think these are the best beers in America versus how many rank these beers as the best because they've been told they're the best.
I would love to see rankings by smaller geographical locations - how much fun would it be to see a ranking of North Carolina's 20 best beers as culled from North Carolinians? One of the first things I do when I'm traveling to a new area is Google the breweries, bottle shops, and beer bars there. While a listicle of best beers in the area wouldn't be my sole resource, it would definitely inform my decisions on where to go.
You can find the complete list here, but here are the Top 20 beers:
- Russian River Pliny the Elder
- Bell's Two Hearted Ale
- The Alchemist Heady Topper
- Ballast Point Sculpin IPA
- Ballast Point Grapefruit Sculpin IPA
- Founders Breakfast Stout
- Three Floyds Zombie Dust
- Bell's Hopslam Ale
- Goose Island Bourbon County Brand Stout
- Tie - Deschutes Fresh Squeezed IPA
- Tie - Stone Enjoy By IPA
- Founders KBS
- Sierra Nevada Pale Ale
- Lawson's Finest Liquids Sip of Sunshine
- Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA
- Tie - Founders All Day IPA
- Tie - Sierra Nevada Celebration
- Cigar City Jai Alai IPA
- Boulevard Tank 7 Farmhouse Ale
- Firestone Walker Wookey Jack
What do you think about rankings like these? Do they influence your decision on what to try next?