Here it is, our penultimate end-of-the year list (Most Popular Beers of 2017 comes out tomorrow).
With five holdovers from last year, this year's list holds many familiar faces. But that also means there are 5 new breweries on the list. 3 (or maybe 3.5?) of these came from Europe, a first for this list.
Enough preface: here's the list. Enjoy, and congrats to those who made the list!
Other Half Brewing Company | Brooklyn, NY
OH's caption from this Instagram post: "The line is real."
These guys keep growing and continue churning out some of the best hoppy beer on the planet. That, combined with the country's palate trajectory (juicy to the moon and back), means it's little wonder that they're at the top of the list. Congrats to OH on the new taproom, and best of luck as they continue plodding along toward world domination, one green-themed hazy IPA at a time.
Grimm Artisanal Ales | Brooklyn, NY
Lauren and Joe Grimm in their soon-to-come brick and mortar brewery. Photo courtesy of The New York Times.
Joe and Lauren Grimm remain two of the kindest folks we've ever met, so we're thrilled to once again see them on our most popular breweries list. Another great year of killer hazy IPAs and solid sours. Like the rest of the beer world, we're all eagerly awaiting the taproom opening.
Interboro Brewing Company | Brooklyn, NY
A recent bitchin' release from Interboro. Photo courtesy of @interboronyc.
"Interboro's on the list? That's great—I'm so happy for Jesse, Laura, and the crew!"
That's a quote from Gage, our head of customer success, who's come to know the Interboro crew pretty well over the years. These folks have come on strong since opening a couple summers ago, making hazy IPAs that confidently stand their ground against Other Half, Grimm, and, frankly, anyone. Whether its Stay Gold, Here Come the Drums, Mad Fat Fluid, or something else, we're always happy drinking an Interboro IPA.
We might as well mention this: we're big fans of the canned G&T they put out last summer, too!
Hill Farmstead | Greensboro, VT
Photo courtesy of @hillfarmstead.
Another year and even more traction gained for this legendary brewery. Good Hill Farmstead memories endure for each of us at BeerMenus—not much can beat enjoying an Everett on a cool night or a Double Citra on a not-so-cool one. And now that HF is canning with some regularity, it makes it much easier to head up to Vermont and haul some goodies back to wherever you came from. Cheers to Shaun and the gang for continuing their climb!
Evil Twin Brewing Company | Brooklyn, NY and Copenhagen, Denmark
Photo courtesy of @eviltwinbrewing.
Since we're headquartered in New York, we're very familiar with both the beer and the bar, Tørst. A favorite memory from the summer: surreptitiously cracking a few Citra Sunshine Slackers at the Rockaways. Progress is also being made on the brick and mortar brewery—will 2018 be the year? We hope so!
Samuel Smith's Brewery | Tadcaster, North Yorkshire, England
The old Samuel Smith brewery.
We were pleasantly surprised to see Samuel Smith turn up on the top-10 list this year. The Oatmeal Stout and Organic Chocolate Stout are legendary, of course—no matter how many bourbon barrel aged imperial stouts you have, you still have to marvel at the subtle, creamy, balanced perfection Samuel Smith captures with these flagships. Cheers to the UK crew leading the European contingent's charge up the list!
Maine Beer Company | Freeport, ME
Photo courtesy of @mainebeerco.
Another repeat performance from last year's list, and it's hard to be disappointed about it. Who could be, when the company's slogan is “Do what's right”?
These folks also put their money exactly where their slogan is: they're part of the 1% Percent for the Planet initiative, which sends 1% of their sales directly to one or more nonprofits in the 1% for the Planet network. The result: a meaningful amount of the price you pay for that Another One, Lunch, or Dinner (if you're lucky!) goes straight to helping our planet. Cheers to that.
Goose Island Brewing Company | Chicago, IL
The legendary Bourbon County series. Photo courtesy of @gooseisland.
No surprise here, especially for those that know what happens every year on Black Friday: the release of Bourbon County Stout and its many variants (e.g. Barleywine, Coffee, etc.). This delicious, viscous slime unofficially marks the beginning of winter for many beer drinkers. Given it's ability to warm the soul, it's little wonder so many search for it.
Chimay | Baileux, Belgium
The barrel aged Grande Reserve. Photo courtesy of @chimayusa.
As we all know, Chimay is a certified Trappist brewery, so all their beer is made by monks. No matter how many times you hear that, it still doesn't seem to compute.
Of course, Chimay has pretty much had the same beer lineup for more than a century. Given that, its sudden surge in popularity didn't seem to fit in this era of can releases and 6+ hour wait times. But after a little brain racking we think we know why Chimay made a charge this year: for the first time, they began offering special barrel-aged versions of their Grand Reserve (AKA Chimay Blue), which drove a lot of traffic.
Rekorderlig Cider Company | Vimmerby, Sweden
Photo courtesy of @rekorederligusa.
One alcoholic beverage maker on this list is not like the other. It's Rekorderlig. The Swedish cider makers made a serious splash in 2017, driving the kind of traffic that's usually reserved for the big wigs of the beer making industry. Congrats to them!
Check back tomorrow to see the list of the Most Popular Beers of 2017!