Finally a good Top 10 Cities list

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by MacNCheese, Jan 30, 2013.

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  1. leedorham

    leedorham Crusader (701) Apr 27, 2006 Washington

    What really keeps me out of these discussions is that I have not been to most of these cities since becoming of legal drinking age. It amuses me how people will argue their favorite to death having never been to many of the others.

    For all I know, Kalamazoo is the greatest beer city since beer and cities were a thing. Haven't been there. Can't comment.

    What I can say: Portland is awesome, Bend is awesome, Seattle is awesome, Denver (area) is awesome, San Francisco is awesome.

    Of those, Portland is probably my favorite based on quality of beer alone. I enjoy the overall vibe in Seattle much more though.

    Edit: Also, how many of you have been to Madison? I like that place a lot, and I really don't like Wisconsin that much.

    Edit 2: P.S. Steve Body is a douchebag.
  2. patto1ro

    patto1ro Defender (627) Apr 26, 2004 Netherlands

    Hwat, no Bamberg or Brussels?
  3. MacNCheese

    MacNCheese Initiate (0) Dec 10, 2011 California

    I visit Portland 2x a year (last year was 3x) and have done the coast/bend/portland extensively, I dated my fiance while she lived in Denver so we've hit nearly 100% of the breweries between the Springs and Ft Fun (overnight stays) and I've been to SF/RR enough.

    For the west coast, San Diego is still my #1, the beer is simply better and has the accolades to back that up.

    Now...that being said, for the last several years I work the competition side of GABF and I avoid westcoast breweries while there so I can focus on other regions. While I haven't been out to visit them, I'm happy to report the quality of beer overall is increasing everywhere. Not only is there an incredible craft boom but also a quality explosion as well. In the future I fully expect to see medals being distributed more evenly geographically and not see 1 region dominate.

    This is a positive for everyone who enjoys good beer.
    libbey, beertunes, SalukiAlum and 2 others like this.
  4. vurt

    vurt Crusader (753) Apr 11, 2004 Oregon

    Looks like the #1 and #2 cities are swapped. Must be a typo.
    Lordkrystic and draheim like this.
  5. rousee

    rousee Meyvn (1,032) Aug 13, 2004 Massachusetts

    To paraphrase Longshanks of Braveheart fame, the problem with Philadelphia is that it is full of Philadelphians.
  6. jampics2

    jampics2 Meyvn (1,475) Dec 19, 2008 Ohio
    Beer Trader

    I have been to both so I will bash them. The best thing I can say is that both are within a block of GLBC.
  7. bramsdell

    bramsdell Aspirant (278) May 27, 2011 North Carolina

    This is the funniest thing I've read on BA in a while.
    thenamestsam likes this.
  8. SFACRKnight

    SFACRKnight Meyvn (1,105) Jan 20, 2012 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    I love living in colorado. Five cities listed from my state? I'll take it all day long...
  9. FishPondManager

    FishPondManager Aspirant (235) Feb 28, 2012 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    Agree. I'd say they should have just put "CO Front Range" as number one.
    KevinMc79 and SFACRKnight like this.
  10. Monsone

    Monsone Initiate (196) Jun 5, 2006 Illinois

    While this list isn't bad, you can tell that the writer is from Seattle and phoned in his research. The criteria listed B) Outstanding, nationally recognized breweries and then raked Seattle 3 listing off a bunch of breweries that are NOT nationally know (regionally at best) and then Pyramid and Redhook. I highly doubt many on this site will tout the virtues of Pyramid and Redhook?

    And then when he describes Chicago he lists off Hopotheisis who has one beer that is contract brewed AND "the stunning" Local Option (a bar that colaboration brews and has some stuff brewed for them out of state). Then on top of that neglects to include Three Floyds with Chicago (which is closer than Boulder is to Denver). Let alone Two Brothers, Solemn Oath, 5 Rabbit, Spiteful, Begyle, etc.

    So, yeah the list is ok but was written by a lazy homer.
    Beerandraiderfan and Docrock like this.
  11. Number45forever

    Number45forever Initiate (0) Jan 6, 2012 Vermont
    Beer Trader


    This is the key to solving the Vermont city/state argument going on here. The answer: Vermont can be its own COUNTRY again! Then we can charge all ya flatlanders a heavy tax for traveling in to buy all of our Heady Topper.

    Step 3: Profit.
    brewsader likes this.
  12. leedorham

    leedorham Crusader (701) Apr 27, 2006 Washington

    I thought Vermont was a Canadian province. You learn something new every day.
    DrtyBvrJuce likes this.
  13. FishPondManager

    FishPondManager Aspirant (235) Feb 28, 2012 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    Canada, eh? Almost made it
  14. zach60614

    zach60614 Aspirant (204) May 1, 2012 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    Yeah, sure
  15. FishPondManager

    FishPondManager Aspirant (235) Feb 28, 2012 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    Yes, sir?

    Oh man, I could go on for days.
    Beerandraiderfan and hopsbreath like this.
  16. DrtyBvrJuce

    DrtyBvrJuce Initiate (0) Jan 17, 2013 California

    But then the east coast would lose their one good IPA. It'd be an import. Like Moosehead.
    Beerandraiderfan likes this.
  17. kinopio

    kinopio Disciple (329) Apr 30, 2009 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    WHen I was in Portland I didn't seen BMC anywhere. Not in movie theaters, fancy Italian restaurants, Turkish restaurants etc. It was very impressive and nothing I've seen on the east coast is like that.
    Beerandraiderfan likes this.
  18. magpiemarie

    magpiemarie Initiate (120) Dec 30, 2009 Massachusetts

    VT needs to be on it as well as Chicago should be...Boston? maybe in top 20 but not 10...
    Boston= zero beer specials, not as many good bars as Chicago that always has great micro tabs...even at a hotel bar
  19. lemongelo

    lemongelo Initiate (0) Jan 14, 2008 North Carolina

    BeerCity USA winner of the last 3 years is honorable mention with Sierra Nevada and New Belgium coming to town? lol...
  20. cjoc83

    cjoc83 Aspirant (282) Jul 31, 2010 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    Probably wishing you mentioned this in the thread title, huh? Lol. If it's a top ten cities based on breweries, then yeah, I get it. The Philly AREA has some amazing breweries (Weyerbacher, Troegs), but most of them are outside the city. There are some very good breweries in the city (Yards, PBC, Triumph, etc), but I'll be the first to admit they're not "world class".

    And to all the people smack talking on Philly, we love it. We love it because we (in all likelihood) have way more access to way more crafts than you do, have an amazing beer scene, and your ill-informed trash-talk is probably based on nothing more than common stereotypes and stupidity. No one is "whining" about Philly...we're proud of our beer scene, and we should be. It's one of the best in the country (debate-ably the best, but that's a discussion for a different thread). In short, quit your bitching. Thanks. :slight_smile:
    RobertColianni and InspectorBob like this.
  21. draheim

    draheim Poo-Bah (2,431) Sep 18, 2010 Washington
    Beer Trader

    Um. I guess if I'd posted this thread I would be.
    Beerandraiderfan likes this.
  22. MacNCheese

    MacNCheese Initiate (0) Dec 10, 2011 California

    The BeerCity winner thing is a joke. Vote early and vote often = desperate for attention. It's going to take the big boys moving in to really put you on the map.

    No not really, this thread has been hilarious to read! I haven't been to PA in a decade, but the whole 'you have to buy a case of beer' thing is pretty weak.
    Beerandraiderfan and cjoc83 like this.
  23. bleakies

    bleakies Disciple (381) Apr 11, 2011 Massachusetts

    Step 4: Patchouli poisoning.

    I'm a big fan of beers brewed in and around Boston, but I certainly wouldn't put Boston Metro among the nation's top ten brewing cities. It's hardy worth commenting, though, because these kinds of lists are always nutty.
  24. cjoc83

    cjoc83 Aspirant (282) Jul 31, 2010 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    It has been quite funny, actually. That was kind of just a gut reaction thing I posted when I got home from work (although I still stand by everything I said in the post). And I totally agree, PA has some seriously effed up liquor laws. The case thing is definitely one of the worst offenders. We are making progress, finally began selling in supermarkets a while ago (maybe a year or so ago?), so that's a plus.
  25. OMsweetOM

    OMsweetOM Aspirant (277) Feb 1, 2011 California

    I agree with most of the list but not particularly the order. Even living close to SD I prefer to be in Bend, OR for craft brew.
    Lordkrystic and beertunes like this.
  26. Blanco

    Blanco Devotee (458) Oct 11, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    Our beer laws are confusing no doubt, but more often than not you do NOT have to buy a case a beer at a time. I'd say less than 10% of what I buy is by the case. It's a common misconception (though it can be true in some parts of the state with limited access to bottle shops and grocery stores). I'd get into it, but it's hashed over and over again in the midatlantic forums and is a separate topic altogether.
    RobertColianni likes this.
  27. whiterabbit

    whiterabbit Initiate (0) Jan 24, 2010 Ohio

    Go to Market Garden. Go to the Bier Market. Trust me, OUTSTANDING.
  28. whiterabbit

    whiterabbit Initiate (0) Jan 24, 2010 Ohio

    This list is full of outstanding choices, but sadly misses way to many great craft Cities for me to take this seriously.

    It is subjective and opinionated, and like everyone else, agree with a few but can easily replace several on this list with better.
  29. kdb150

    kdb150 Devotee (485) Mar 8, 2012 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    You don't HAVE to buy a case, although you will pay exorbitant prices if you don't.

    It's actually not that bad of a list, but while you can argue whether Philly should take its place, Boston simply doesn't belong. I'd choose Portland, Maine WAY before I ever said Boston. Portland would be a cornerstone destination in just about any New England beer adventure, while I wouldn't even stop in Boston. I'd also choose Portland, Maine over Seattle, San Francisco, or anywhere in Colorado on that list.

    It's also a bit dodgy to amalgamate metro areas or smaller towns the way he did. I mean, Grand Rapids/Kalamazoo? Really? I like Bell's and Founders too, but this is stretching things a bit too far to include them. Hell, going by that logic, Harrisburg/York/Lancaster deserves a spot solely for Troegs, along with the host of other smaller breweries and brewpubs of varying quality that one finds out there.
  30. NickyDee21

    NickyDee21 Devotee (467) Dec 23, 2011 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    I stand corrected, then. I can admit I was wrong! Haha, never seen anything like that before. Will def have to make my way out there once I'm out of the service and got some time to myself.
  31. solargoat

    solargoat Aspirant (226) Dec 31, 2008 Wisconsin

  32. cbeer88

    cbeer88 Crusader (719) Sep 5, 2007 Massachusetts

    The problem with lists like this is they are always written by people who clearly haven't been to every city on their list (or even half of them).

    Leaving Philly off any Top 5 beer city list is criminal, and putting Boston above Philly is a clear illustration of never having visited at least one of the two cities. Boston is a craft beer friendly city, but it is also still largely dominated by faux-Irish pubs serving up a healthy dose of BMC and Guinness. In fact, you have to go to the city outskirts/subburbs just to get to any of the high end craft bars. Contrast that with Philly, on the other hand, where you can't walk two blocks downtown without running into an awesome little corner bar chock full of craft beer.
  33. the_beerist

    the_beerist Disciple (363) Jul 23, 2005 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    Been drinking in every city on list (including Philly) with the exception of Grand Rapids. Philadelphia is definitely #3 and NYC belongs on the list as well. Portland also gets the nod ahead of San Diego in my book. Embarrassingly bad list.
    RobertColianni likes this.
  34. beertunes

    beertunes Poo-Bah (4,794) Sep 24, 2007 Washington
    Beer Trader

    Thanks for that. But still, (as a former OTR commercial driver) I know that the feds are very strict about transporting across state lines. It seems that they're home free once they're back in DC, but crossing from Indiana-Ohio-West Virginia-Maryland into into DC would cause problems were they ever to pulled over. Maybe they've got a loophole, otherwise it seems they wouldn't want to get a lot of press about it. Oh well, yet one more mystery in the beer world.:confused:
  35. Chaney

    Chaney Initiate (0) Apr 20, 2006 District of Columbia

    Did you read the link I sent in its entirety?
  36. beertunes

    beertunes Poo-Bah (4,794) Sep 24, 2007 Washington
    Beer Trader

    Yeah, unless I missed something, it seems to say that once they have it, they're good to sell it. It doesn't seem to address how they get it into they city, other than dude takes rent a truck and goes and get it. As long as you're under 18,000lbs gross weight, you don't have to stop at scales or for inspections, so the odds of them getting randomly pulled over are slim.

    For example, a commercial driver cannot have any alcohol in their vehicle that is not on their BoL. Which means we couldn't even have mouthwash in the sleeper berth. Now, I've never heard of a driver actually getting that ticket, but the company I drove for back East was vehement about us drivers not even taking that chance. Another example, in Pennsylvania there was (maybe still is, IDK) a law that says to even transport alcohol through the state, each specific truck had to have a certain permit. My company had about 300 trucks, and about 120 or so of our trucks had that permit. So when we took Budweiser from Syracuse to the docks in Newark, only the trucks with that permit could carry the beer through PA. There's a metric shit-ton of obscure shit dealing with the transportation industry, and when you add alcohol it gets even more intricate. I'm just curious is all, I'm all for everyone having all the beer they can get!
    Chaney likes this.
  37. miketd

    miketd Zealot (524) Mar 2, 2006 Ohio
    Beer Trader

    This point is very often overlooked.
  38. miketd

    miketd Zealot (524) Mar 2, 2006 Ohio
    Beer Trader

    Beer culture is one thing, but I can't think of one Seattle brewery that wowed me during my visits. I love Chuckanut and Boundry Bay... but that's far from Seattle.

    And this post isn't to bash Seattle, I absolutely love the place, but Cleveland is a great city to get great local beer.
  39. frenchblood21

    frenchblood21 Disciple (321) Nov 22, 2011 Ohio
    Beer Trader

    Believeland!!! (OH-.................IO!!!!)

    If Cleveland isn't on the list, then it's a bogus list.
  40. Chaney

    Chaney Initiate (0) Apr 20, 2006 District of Columbia

    Cool man. Yeah, in terms of distro, we have it pretty good. The kind of "bootlegging" I'm talking about is not even on the radar in terms of truck weight, alcohol content, etc.. The stores in DC who really know the system often load up their SUV and head to places out in New England or the far Midwest. They basically load up their vehicle(s), stay in a cheap motel or with family, then head back. They pay the $5, add a tax to it, then the beer magically appears in a store in DC. Please understand that this is ABSOLUTELY commonplace out here. The DC motto is "Taxation Without Representation" and it works like a charm in the beer world.

    Hope all is well bro!
    beertunes likes this.
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