BeerAdvocate's Top 10 from 2006 is almost entirely displaced.

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by MichialTanner1, Feb 22, 2016.

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  1. MichialTanner1

    MichialTanner1 Devotee (402) May 17, 2009 Texas

    There have been a few threads over the past few years referencing former "Top Beers" as ranked on the BA site. Using the Wayback machine, here were the Top 10 from Feb. '06:

    1. Trappist Westvleteren 12 (now #10)
    2. Stone Imperial Russian Stout (now #202)
    3. Dark Lord Imperial Stout (no longer in Top 250; Bourbon Barrel Aged Vanilla Bean version at #9)
    4. St. Bernardus Abt 12 (now #99)
    5. Trappistes Rochefort 10 (now #58)
    6. Trappist Westvleteren 8 (now #55)
    7. Dreadnaught IPA (now #129)
    8. Victory Storm King Stout (no longer in Top 250)
    9. Founders Breakfast Stout (now #57)
    10. Masala Mama IPA (now #198)
    Only the #1 beer from 2006 remains in the current Top 10, Westy 12 currently at #10. Other notes of interest:
    • 2006 list consists of 3 Quads, 3 RISs, 1 Dubbel, 1 American Double/Imp Stout, 1 American IPA and 1 American DIPA
    • 2016 list consists of 1 Quad, 1 RIS, 4 American Double/Imp Stout, 4 American DIPA, with the 4 DISs and 4 DIPAs making up the Top 8.
    • Up-and-comers PTE and PTY were at #39 and #40, respectively, with ratings of 4.25 and 4.27 that wouldn't crack the Top 250 today. In 2016, ratings have increased significantly to 4.6 and 4.66.
    Any thoughts on trends for the next decade or why some of these beers/styles have fallen so far out of favor?
    #1 MichialTanner1, Feb 22, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2016
  2. anth0ny

    anth0ny Initiate (0) Jan 5, 2012 Michigan

    We discovered barrel-aged stouts
  3. johnnybgood1999

    johnnybgood1999 Disciple (332) Oct 31, 2008 Virginia

    It's blowing my mind that I haven't had a single beer from the current top 10 list.
  4. chrisjws

    chrisjws Champion (836) Dec 3, 2014 California

    The top 10 today has five rare annual releases, 3 relatively rare rotating releases, one that requires going to Belgium or paying out the nose for, and one that is gettable by trade but not found in stores unless you just happen to live in Vermont. Scarcity hype has taken over. In the next ten years I expect continued emphasis on extremely rare whales and hoppy beers that taste like orange juice.
  5. ramonallones

    ramonallones Initiate (0) Feb 2, 2016 California

    Those 4 Trappist/abbey are still in my personal top 10. Prob my personal taste preference. While I think its fun to try and chase down new beers, i haven't found much that can replace those. Founders is a go to as well, just prob not top 10
    VTMLB, jtk, Premo88 and 1 other person like this.
  6. thepenguin

    thepenguin Devotee (456) Aug 8, 2010 Massachusetts

    Hype, rarity, barrel-aging and a general move away from Belgians.
  7. JayWhitson

    JayWhitson Champion (844) Feb 25, 2015 Montana
    Society Trader

    I've had 11, 20, 39 and 45 of the top 50
    VABA likes this.
  8. Beef_Curtains

    Beef_Curtains Devotee (471) Oct 14, 2013 Ohio

    This really shows how rarity has become a ratings booster. I've bought 6 out of the 2006 top 10 off the shelf around here multiple times but have never seen any of today's top 10 in a store.
    UrbanCaveman, Ranbot, Bung and 7 others like this.
  9. vileplume

    vileplume Initiate (0) Sep 27, 2015 Arizona

    so it is homers just giving out 5's for their local hypebeast wateringhole.

    all snide comments aside, i think thepenguin said it best, people are moving away from belgians.
  10. AndrewK

    AndrewK Aspirant (271) Oct 20, 2006 California

    More rating inflation. In ten years a beer will need a 4.5 weighted just to break the top 250.
  11. HighWine

    HighWine Initiate (0) Dec 11, 2010 Illinois

    The hype and trade value trend will only get worse. Of the current Top 100 beers, 29% have fewer than 100 reviews. Some home brews would probably be best in the world if rating them were allowed.
  12. HighWine

    HighWine Initiate (0) Dec 11, 2010 Illinois

    It's getting ridiculous. I used to laugh when I'd read a harsh review of a beer that ended with a score of 3.95. Now I cringe because they are all too common.
    BDEE, ONovoMexicano, machalel and 3 others like this.
  13. johnnybgood1999

    johnnybgood1999 Disciple (332) Oct 31, 2008 Virginia

    So close, yet so far away. I've had a few off the top 50. Looking at what chrisjws said, I doubt I try many top 10 brews if this scarcity trend continues. Oh well, I just had barrel aged yeti for the first time and it was great. Plenty of good beers for the masses!
    JayWhitson likes this.
  14. vileplume

    vileplume Initiate (0) Sep 27, 2015 Arizona

    quoted for truth!
  15. JayWhitson

    JayWhitson Champion (844) Feb 25, 2015 Montana
    Society Trader

    totally agree, taste is subjective
    johnnybgood1999 likes this.
  16. eldoctorador

    eldoctorador Defender (615) Dec 12, 2014 California

    Beers of fame, the only list I care for
  17. ElChuques

    ElChuques Initiate (90) Oct 8, 2014 Arkansas

    I've had 33 of the current top 250 and 33 of the top 100 Beers of Fame.

    Staying power over hype/fads.
  18. Groenebeor

    Groenebeor Initiate (0) Feb 14, 2009 California

    I find that looking at the top beers for the styles you enjoy the most is far more useful, at least if you prefer something other than DIPAs and other over hyped styles.

    I don't think we're going to see a lot of change in the 2026 top ten other than shifts in which 10%+ ABV styles are the most popular at the time.

    I'd love to see a list of the top beers under 7% or so.
    Gaddabble likes this.
  19. jzeilinger

    jzeilinger Poo-Bah (6,587) Dec 4, 2004 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    IPA's. Then along came Tree House. ( :rolling_eyes: ) Although the sours and session beers are getting more notoriety, not predicting the barrel aged Imperial Stout and hoppy IPA trend to change any time soon.
    #19 jzeilinger, Feb 22, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2016
  20. Josholson666

    Josholson666 Initiate (0) Mar 21, 2015 Minnesota

    Wow. Cool to see Masala Mama used to be in the top ten back when I was in middle school! Still one of my favorite IPAs, and am lucky enough to live close enough to get it whenever I want!

    Fuck scarcity!
    lester619 and cavedave like this.
  21. Premo88

    Premo88 Poo-Bah (1,804) Jun 6, 2010 Texas
    Society Trader

    I've only had 3 of those 4 Trappists/abbeys, but it's not just your personal taste preference. No offense meant to the current Top 250, but Rochefort 10 is still No. 1, Westy 12 probably belongs in the Top 5 and many would argue St. Bernardus 12 is better than both.

    Of course, all of that is IMHO. :slight_smile:
    HighWine and icetrauma like this.
  22. davidperez

    davidperez Aspirant (268) Dec 3, 2015 Mexico

    It's the New World taking over the Old World.
    Perhaps if the hype fades and the beer world ceases to be seized by IPA's and BA RIS's then it might reach an equilibrium.
    I have no idea but I would like to see that happen, being enamored by trappist beers as much as I am.
    #22 davidperez, Feb 22, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2016
    Groenebeor likes this.
  23. doktorhops

    doktorhops Poo-Bah (1,686) Jan 12, 2011 Australia

    Yeah of the 2006 top 10 4 were reasonably acquirable whereas f@#k the 2016 top 10! I'll never get my hands on any of those bar Westy XII (and even that was a hell of a mission to get my hands on).

    Seriously getting sick of these small US brewers with their impossible to obtain ego beers.
  24. Hallu

    Hallu Initiate (0) Feb 2, 2016 France

    The current number 1 has a lot of poor written reviews like "oh my god I love this, 5/5", and it's 100% American reviews due to the exclusivity. Plus as a general rule, imperial stouts are very generously graded compared to other styles. 9 out of 10 of the top 10 are exclusive American beers, mostly only tasted by Americans. The issue is with the quality of the reviews in my opinion. Perfect grades are given too easily.
  25. drtth

    drtth Poo-Bah (3,932) Nov 25, 2007 Pennsylvania

    Over the 10 years there are at least 4 things that could have changed: the breweries/beers, the way the rankings and ratings are calculated, the people doing the reviewing/rating, the number of beers in contention for being on the list. All can and do impact the popularity contest known as The Top 250 List.

    Since we know the last 3 have all changed more than once over 10 years....
    #25 drtth, Feb 22, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2016
  26. David_Deas

    David_Deas Initiate (0) Jan 26, 2016 North Carolina

    Gift and a curse. Ratebeer is much more international, which is annoying at times when you have to skip past reviews done in foreign languages. Added to that, the occasional foreign beer that cracks the top ten from sub saharan Africa that you can rest assured you will never get your hands on.

    Perfect scores are fine. I think a beer can get a perfect score just as long as its flawless. On the opposite end of what you mention with imperial stouts, in many cases even if a beer is technically flawless it won't earn a perfect score just because of bias against the style. Like a pilsner for example. No matter how well executed a pilsner may be the members on this site will always pan them because subconciously they think all beer should be more of a flavor bomb like an imperial stout.
    #26 David_Deas, Feb 22, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2016
  27. Hallu

    Hallu Initiate (0) Feb 2, 2016 France

    Yeah if you find a pilsner or lagger rated 4.2 to 4.4, it's one of the best in the world. For a stout ? It's not even gonna be in the top 50... Enjoying the current stouts done today, which are strong on the chocolate and coffee notes is a lot easier than enjoying a bock, a gose, or a sour beer. But 25 years ago strong hopped IPAs were not enjoyed at all and had BA existed at the time, I'm sure they'd have gotten poor ratings. Green Flash IPA would have been quite low I imagine. I don't mind seeing Tree House or Trillium up there in the top 10, and I could even live with the fact that it's almost all American. But I don't like that it's all beers that are impossible to find outside of the US (or even outside of the state it's brewed in sometimes...).
  28. dennis3951

    dennis3951 Savant (902) Mar 6, 2008 New Jersey

    I agree on all 4 points. I also think that the membership of BA has changed over the last 10 years.
    SinjaminBentek, steveh and AlcahueteJ like this.
  29. David_Deas

    David_Deas Initiate (0) Jan 26, 2016 North Carolina

    Any idea why? I think thats a strange question.

    You mean beyond the obvious fact that the current top ten list has better beer on it than the top ten list from 2006? Because if you ask me, thats the principal reason for the shift. Go back even further to 2002:

    1 Storm King Stout Victory Brewing Company 4.8 10
    2 Hennepin Brewery Ommegang 4.76 10
    3 Celebrator Doppelbock Brauerei Aying 4.65 16
    4 Duvel Duvel Moortgat NV. 4.62 25
    5 Don de Dieu Unibroue 4.6 20
    6 Trappistes Rochefort 10 Brasserie Rochefort 4.6 11
    7 Celebration Ale 2001 Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. 4.55 17
    8 Maudite Unibroue 4.55 15
    9 Alpha King Pale Ale Three Floyds Brewing LLC 4.52 10
    10 Chimay Première (Red / Rood)

    Is that maybe a better list?

    Your question assumes that there must be some other forces at play. So let me ask you, which beers in the current top ten do you believe should not be there, and maybe would not be there if not for these other forces?

    (*) Westvleteren was top ranked in 2002 on Ratebeer and in 2003 on Beer Advocate. Nobody cared. In 2006, for some reason, people started to pay attention. And the fact that even in 2016, when your average imperial stout is more adjunct than fermented malt, it still cracks the top ten list on both Beer Advocate and Ratebeer I think is a testament to the fact that the beer was truly ahead of its time.
    kevanb, ebin6, Thecalmdrinker and 3 others like this.
  30. tmbgnicu

    tmbgnicu Devotee (490) Mar 15, 2014 Pennsylvania

    You should take this opportunity to go buy a Stone RIS and remember how incredibly great that beer is.
  31. fredmugs

    fredmugs Meyvn (1,483) Aug 11, 2012 Indiana

    Overall I think it's a great thing. My friend who got me into higher end craft beers told me the first time he went to Dark Lord Day there wasn't 10 people in line. It was huge and there wasn't anything like it. Now there may be 100 or more places doing better. It deserved it's rating then and has fallen accordingly.

    I chased the Beers of Fame back when there were 100 listed as a learning curve. Now that they are up to 250 it's not worth the hassle.
  32. Dentist666

    Dentist666 Poo-Bah (2,548) Dec 21, 2009 Russian Federation

    Current DIPA and IS hype blows my mind away.
    Groenebeor likes this.
  33. bbtkd

    bbtkd Poo-Bah (2,549) Sep 20, 2015 South Dakota
    Society Trader

    Perhaps too many inexperienced hands in the review/rating game? I saw a new review the other day (probably couldn't find it again) where the narrative seemed well thought out, they rated the beer 4.25+, but then the bottom line was that they were disappointed and might not get it again. What? Why in the hell would you rate something that high if you hadn't found a new favorite? Maybe not your style? Then don't review it if you can't be objective enough to overcome style preference.
  34. Hallu

    Hallu Initiate (0) Feb 2, 2016 France

    Duvel doesn't deserve top 10 IMO... It doesn't even deserves top 50. Celebrator Doppelbock is great, but again not a top10 beer, I'd probably put around 40 or 50. Rochefort however should be in the top 20 all day long.
    R3ason likes this.
  35. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Meyvn (1,037) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts

    Yes, these five points are all factors. I think the two largest factors are the newer(est) members likely joined because they love the styles America does best, and are widely available. Barrel-aged stouts, but obviously a litany of IPAs. The other largest factor, is that there are exponentially more US breweries/beers available than 10 years ago. And US brewer's are brewing what people want.

    If you look at the 2002 list, I don't think you'll find many users who joined in the past few year's raving about Celebrator or Rochefort 10...chances are they may never have even tried either of them, or maybe even heard of them. Click on any IPA-themed thread and you can probably count on one hand the users who have been on the site for 10+ years.
    meefmoff likes this.
  36. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Meyvn (1,037) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts

    Would you put any Doppelbock in the top 10?
  37. Uconnelmo

    Uconnelmo Zealot (525) Jan 2, 2015 Connecticut

    Tell em why your mad
  38. chuckgietzen

    chuckgietzen Crusader (725) Nov 10, 2014 Michigan

    I have had 17 beers from the Top 50...
    Of that, only 2 are from the Top 10 (however I have 2 more from the Top 10 in my possession that I will be having soon)

    43 from the Top 250 List
    42 from the Beers of Fame List
    Beersnob724 and johnnybgood1999 like this.
  39. Hallu

    Hallu Initiate (0) Feb 2, 2016 France

    Doppelbocks don't "wow" me to be honest. They're very good, just like the white beers the German make, but they're all tradition beer that are pretty monodirectional. I'm pretty sure that if an emerging and bold microbrewery decided to make a more modern doppelbock it could be a contender. But with "tradition" beers, the Belgians are above the Germans I think. You can't compare the Celebrator Doppelbock with the wine-like complexity of a Rochefort 10 for example.

    This may open another debate : German beers (and English beers as well) are generally more balanced than "in your face" beers. And American tastes are towards bold tasty beers right now. In 2006 it looks like it was more towards sweet and traditional belgian beers. I wonder what it's gonna be in 10 years ? Is it gonna be more weird ingredients, a bitterness contest, a contest on the number of fruits you can taste in an IPA ? I'm hopping instead it's gonna be directed to more ancient beer styles revivals (like the gose or saison at the moment), because we can't only have stouts and IPAs.
  40. lateralusbeer

    lateralusbeer Aspirant (213) Feb 7, 2010 North Carolina

    The reality is that we are still collectively a very, very young craft beer scene. When someone is new to anything, they are constantly in the mode of "What else ya got?" and skew hard towards trying the most difficult to get. As craft beer drinkers mature, they become more comfortable with their own palates, and return to tried and true favorites. In the last five years I (and several people I know) have gone from constantly looking for what's new in the beer shop to looking for consistency and value. I can't remember the last time I bought something in a bomber.

    Add in the psychology of waiting hours in line/traveline/paying a trade random for a rare bottle, and thus not wanting to be thought a fool (even internally) by not liking it, and the state of the list is no surprise. The list is basically meaningless right now; it might as well say "Top 250 beers ranked by trade value."
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