And the Best Beer in America Is…

Pliny

Well, no surprises in the 2010 Zymurgy Best Beer in America Poll, I guess.  For two years in a row now it’s Pliney, Pliney, Pliney!  I haven’t had Pliney the Elder (feel free to send me some), but I have had Bell’s Two Hearted and can attest to its tastiness.  Other than the fact that the top of the list is packed with IPA’s, this is basically a collection of 50 really good beers.

1. Russian River Pliny the Elder
2. Bell’s Two Hearted Ale
3. Stone Arrogant Bastard
4. Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA
5. Sierra Nevada Pale Ale
6. Stone IPA
T7. Bear Republic Racer 5
T7. Guinness
T7. Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine
T7. Sierra Nevada Celebration
11. Stone Ruination
T12. North Coast Old Rasputin
T12. Sierra Nevada Torpedo
T12. Rahr Winter Warmer
T12. Rahr Ugly Pug
T12. Rahr Iron Thistle
T17. Oskar Blues Ten Fidy
T17. New Glarus Belgian Red
T17. Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA
T17. Duvel
T21. Lagunitas IPA
T21. Samuel Adams Boston Lager
T21. Rahr Storm Cloud
T21. Saison Dupont
T25. Founders Kentucky Breakfast Stout
T25. Rahr Bucking Bock
T25. Ommegang Three Philosophers
T28. New Belgium Fat Tire
T28. Alaskan Smoked Porter
T28. Anchor Steam
T31. Ayinger Celebrator Doppelbock
T31. Dogfish Head Palo Santo Marron
T31. Rahr Summer
T31. Rahr Red
T31. Rahr Blind Salamander
T31. Rahr Blonde
T31. Rahr Octoberfest
T31. Victory Prima Pils
T31. New Belgium La Folie
T31. Russian River Consecration
T41. Oskar Blues Dale’s Pale Ale
T41. Rahr Buffalo Butt
T41. New Belgium 1554
T41. Orval
T41. Lagunitas Hop Stoopid
T41. Rogue Dead Guy
T41. Unibroue La Fin Du Monde
T41. Deschutes Black Butte Porter
T49. Surly Furious
T49. Dogfish Head Indian Brown
T49. Rahr Whiskey Warmer
T49. Rodenbach Grand Cru

Check out the rest of the results from the American Homebrewer Association site, including brewery rankings and which breweries have the best portfolios of beer.  I have to say the #1 brewery is a bit of a head scratcher, at least if you’re not from Texas.

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Categories: Beer, Poll

Author:Jim

Craft beer nerd, frequent beer blogger and occasional home brewer.

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23 Comments on “And the Best Beer in America Is…”

  1. June 29, 2010 at 8:17 am #

    Interesting list, but who/what is Rahr? Seems they have half the list locked up and well, I’ve never heard of them!

    • June 29, 2010 at 8:32 am #

      Exactly. I dunno who they are, but I think they know how to mobilize their fanbase to vote.

    • Ryan Means
      May 10, 2011 at 5:41 pm #

      Rahr and Sons is a brewery out of Fort Worth, Texas. The best brewery in Texas if you ask me!

      • May 10, 2011 at 8:03 pm #

        I hear lots of other folks feel the same, even if the place doesn’t have a roof!

  2. June 29, 2010 at 8:26 am #

    I think Bells is good, no doubt…I’d hardly put it at number 2 though. The arbitrary nature of “best beer lists” always cracks me up. It’s hard for me to take them serious.

    • June 29, 2010 at 8:33 am #

      Agreed. Two Hearted is terrific, but there are several beers I’d put ahead of it and Pliney.

  3. June 29, 2010 at 9:37 am #

    They must be in cahoots with Pennsylvania. 😉

    • June 29, 2010 at 10:15 am #

      Well, it looks like they have the same thing going on Facebook (5000+ fans and a very active page: http://www.facebook.com/rahrbrewing ). That’s how Victory skewed the best beer state vote for PA. Just goes to show the whole world is rigged and the only thing that matters is your opinion (unless it’s been manipulated by a clever social networker).

      Also, if I ever open up a sports bar, I think I’ll name it “Cahoots!”

      • Don
        June 29, 2010 at 10:32 am #

        You’ll have to open it somewhere other than Idaho…We already have one.

      • June 29, 2010 at 11:05 am #

        Really? I’d go for “Spuds!” if I were in Idaho.

  4. June 29, 2010 at 10:20 am #

    I just read this on Rahr and Sons Brewing Co’s Facebook Page:

    “Our roof collapsed during the February 12, 2010 snowstorm. We’re rebuilding and will be back in production as soon as possible. Thank you so much for your support!”

    First off, I wish them well and hope for a speedy return to production. But I find it odd that the number one brewery on Zymurgy’s list only brewed beer for two months this year. I know there’s a supply on the shelves, etc., but it still strikes me as weird.

    But still, a little good publicity probably makes the sting of rebuilding hurt a little less.

    • June 29, 2010 at 3:39 pm #

      Who knew a little brewery in Fort Worth, TX would be represented on that list so well?!?!

      • June 29, 2010 at 4:10 pm #

        Yeah, especially one without a roof, which was caved in during a February snowstorm. I hope their anointment puts a spring in their step, as I imagine it’s gotta suck having your world collapse like that.

  5. June 29, 2010 at 1:13 pm #

    Look at that list. Tons of IPAs and Pale Ale. Who says that Americans aren’t still in that phase. Come to think of it, 90 min was voted bet 2 years in a row before Pliny. This list really does stay fairly similar year to year and you can tell people are sticking with the tried and true. By the way, Stone IPA has no business on the list at all, let alone number 7.

    • June 29, 2010 at 1:13 pm #

      Number 6…my bad.

    • June 29, 2010 at 3:41 pm #

      While I like pale ale and IPA, I would rather see a greater variety in that list. I wonder… what were the parameters for compiling such a list?

      • June 29, 2010 at 4:11 pm #

        Votes. and only about 2700 of them, mostly from readers of Zymurgy (you know, those unwashed homebrewer types) 😉

    • June 29, 2010 at 4:06 pm #

      When I started drinking good beer, I was pissed that so much shelf space was dedicated to IPA’s, which I saw as hipster soda. This iluustrates why – the stuff is popular, even if its not my favorite style.

      Stone was the first IPA I ever really liked, but I agree that it’s up a little too high. But then again I wouldn’t have most of these in my Top 10.

  6. Kevin M
    June 29, 2010 at 3:42 pm #

    I take absolutely no stock in these kind of lists. I have never even heard of Rahr, and I’ve been in this industry over half my life. It seems really odd that a list like this comes out filled with 11 beers from a Texas brewery that hardly distributes anywhere… there’s not even a single Rahr brew on RATEADVOCATE’s Top Billion Best over-rated list.

    It looks like ballot-stuffing by Rahr and Sons… kind of funny, since the last time a recount was needed involved a governor from Texas and his brother in Florida!

    • June 29, 2010 at 4:12 pm #

      Al Gore wants a recount! And a happy ending!!

      • Kevin M
        June 29, 2010 at 5:13 pm #

        Why does it seem like everytime something needs to be recounted, it involves Texas or Texans???

        • June 29, 2010 at 5:29 pm #

          I have lots of clever answers for you, Kev, but I bet a boot in my butt that you shouldn’t mess with Texas!

      • Big Tex
        June 29, 2010 at 11:06 pm #

        Kevin, you should have seen the gubernatorial race here in WA back in 2004… no Texans involved.

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