Good (not great) breweries

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by MetalMountainMastiff, Jan 23, 2013.

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  1. palmdalethriller

    palmdalethriller Initiate (0) Dec 26, 2007 California

    I'm right there with ya. What's the point of this thread? To bash breweries that we like but don't love? What's wrong with being a GOOD brewery? How many GREAT breweries are there? Do we have to like every beer from a brewery to make it a GREAT one? Is that even possible?

    Why did you waste your time posting it?

    What's wrong with Auburn Ale House? You don't like the Isotope IPA? You don't appreciate living in a tiny little foothill town that still manages to have a pretty sweet collection of dive bars, restaurants and even a GOOD (but not great) brewpub? Do you know how many small towns across America SUCK compared to Auburn? How about how many brewpubs SUCK compare to Auburn Ale House? Who cares if it's just good.

    yes. I've got a fever.

    (Just joking Metalmountainmastiff... well, mostly just joking. I still think this thread is kind of stupid.)
    victory4me likes this.
  2. KevinGordon

    KevinGordon Initiate (0) Dec 16, 2012 North Carolina

    Double Dog Pale Ale is terrible, despite the 11.5% ABV. It turned me off to the whole brewery. Also, Raging Bitch has a huge Doggy Vagina on the label. No seriously.
  3. wvsabbath

    wvsabbath Meyvn (1,390) Apr 29, 2010 West Virginia
    Beer Trader

    Victory makes atleast 6 beers id buy and drink over and over, very solid and well respected brewery.
  4. dennis3951

    dennis3951 Crusader (729) Mar 6, 2008 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    So your saying ,if it's easy to get it can't be great?
    fineout and beerloserLI like this.
  5. wvsabbath

    wvsabbath Meyvn (1,390) Apr 29, 2010 West Virginia
    Beer Trader

    I love unfiltered double simcoe but after that, merry monks, blithering idiot, last chance ipa, even old heathen, nothing special or something id seek out to drink again. Even insanity is good but theres alot better out there.
  6. cjoc83

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

    I totally agree. I actually used to work there. It's just when compared with truly great breweries (Founders, Lagunitas, Russian River, etc), it falls a little short. I have a lot of respect for Victory, and as I pointed out, I like a lot of their beers. I would put Victory in the 'very good but not quite great' category.
  7. MetalMountainMastiff

    MetalMountainMastiff Initiate (0) Oct 1, 2012 California
    Beer Trader

    Doesn't bother me..I wouldn't be offended if people disliked any thread I started in the least.
  8. deciding39

    deciding39 Initiate (0) Jun 7, 2005 Massachusetts

    I'll have to second Long Trail. I've never had anything by them that ever "wowed" me, except for a black IPA I had at the Vermont Brewers Festival a few years back. Don't think that one was ever distributed here. Other than that, I usually just find myself nodding in quiet enjoyment when I drink a Long Trail, never shouting its praises from the rooftops.
    fineout and petah12 like this.
  9. GoGators

    GoGators Crusader (724) Aug 5, 2010 New Jersey
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    I'll say 21st Amendment. Love the cans in general, love Hop Crisis and they have some good beers but nothing else that wows me.
    jgluck and jlenik like this.
  10. NickyDee21

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

    Think the

    Think the one New Belgium brew that's done very very well is La Folie.
  11. NickyDee21

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

    I'd have to say Weyerbacher as well.
  12. Whimpers

    Whimpers Disciple (383) Dec 17, 2010 New York
    Beer Trader

    Beer Advocate is all about "splitting hairs." There are only so many things to talk about when it comes to beer.
    fuzzylogic likes this.
  13. Chaney

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

    For every truly great beer Terrapin makes, it seems that about 3 mediocre ones usually follow.
    fullmetal1381 and JohnBender like this.
  14. Providence

    Providence Initiate (0) Feb 24, 2010 Rhode Island

    Follow this:

    Long Trail is a brewery that so consistently puts out good beers that they are a great brewery.
    beerloserLI and ripps1 like this.
  15. strohme2

    strohme2 Crusader (740) Nov 3, 2007 Michigan
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    I'd put in a vote for Sweetwater. Their off the shelf beers are average in my opinion. To be fair I've never had anything other than the off the shelfs but nothing wowed me.
  16. Droogins

    Droogins Initiate (0) Sep 4, 2012 Massachusetts

    Always solid, never below average, but I have yet to try anything from them that I'd actively seek out, except maybe Righteous if Founder's Red's RIPA and Ruthless aren't available.

    They're pretty all right though. Since we're splitting hairs. And I am eagerly awaiting 3Beans.
  17. slim2043

    slim2043 Initiate (0) Jul 23, 2012 Connecticut

    I would kind of agree here although I think these two breweries do A LOT MORE for Craft brewing than some of the GREAT breweries and they both conjur and strike on GREAT ideas. I see these two brewers as Brave experimenters and mad scientists but they don't have a lot of beers that we beer geeks have to have.
  18. jrbuckt

    jrbuckt Initiate (0) Sep 13, 2012 Illinois

    St Arnolds is a great example. Everything is solid, nothing truly exceptional (maybe Pumpkinator).
    JohnBender likes this.
  19. cavedave

    cavedave Poo-Bah (2,161) Mar 12, 2009 New York
    Beer Trader

    I think Sixpoint is a good pick. They strike me as a brewery from which we will be waiting eagerly for them to put out a great beer, and like Blue Point they just never will.
    mjtiernan likes this.
  20. yemenmocha

    yemenmocha Poo-Bah (2,459) Jun 18, 2002 Arizona

    Widmer was good in the 90's when few were 'good' by today's standards.

    Now Widmer is below average.
    I wouldn't shed a tear if they went out of business. And F their "Hefe-Weizen" that is NOT really a Hefe-Weizen.
  21. erog5188

    erog5188 Initiate (0) Mar 16, 2010 Wisconsin

    New Belgium has always been one for me, Goose Island is another...I love their limited release stuff but I feel their others leave something to be desired. (Honkers and 312 come to mind), finally Samuel Adams, I like to grab a 12 pack of Boston Lager from time to time but usually pass it up for others.
  22. fuzzylogic

    fuzzylogic Initiate (0) Nov 16, 2008 Pennsylvania

    I don't mind this thread - ranking shit is a lot of what we do on this site.

    "Good" is nothing to be ashamed of in the crowded craft beer market. For me, these jump out at me:

    Terrapin, Yards, Sam Adams, Dark Horse, Stoudts, Harpoon, Sly Fox, Flying Fish, Arcadia, Anderson Valley
    dbfp210 and jgluck like this.
  23. Revenant

    Revenant Aspirant (280) Aug 8, 2012 Minnesota

    fuzzylogic likes this.
  24. Norica

    Norica Aspirant (232) Feb 2, 2006 Massachusetts

    Widmer O'Ryely might be one of the most underrated beers I've ever had. Would love to see where it would score in blind tastings.
  25. SalukiAlum

    SalukiAlum Initiate (0) Dec 19, 2010 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    Alaskan, Two Brothers and Anderson Valley
  26. ledzeppelin4

    ledzeppelin4 Initiate (0) May 18, 2011 Illinois

    Since it has not been mentioned yet, I'll have to say Sixpoint.
  27. SalukiAlum

    SalukiAlum Initiate (0) Dec 19, 2010 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    Deschutes? Really? Ever had Abyss, Black Butte XXIII, Mirror Pond, Obsidian (even better on nitro), Hop In the Dark?
    denver10 and djsmith1174 like this.
  28. bassofthec

    bassofthec Initiate (121) Aug 7, 2008 California

    If the point of the thread is to list breweries where I would enjoy most of their products, but none come to mind as an "absolute must try" then: Green Flash, Deschutes, New Belgium are the ones that come to mind.
  29. alexipa

    alexipa Devotee (435) Oct 7, 2011 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    I strongly disagree with Two Brothers. Cane & Ebel, Domain Dupage, and Atom Smasher are all amazing brews to me. They don't make a single average beer... all above average.

    I would say Boulder Beer, The Bruery, Green Flash, and I agree with Widmer. There are a LOT of good, but not great, local breweries around as well.
  30. BrownAleMale

    BrownAleMale Initiate (0) Dec 14, 2011 Wisconsin
    ¬°Bad Trader! Beer Trader

    I would just like to say that I like any brewery that is giving me ALL good to great beers. It is hard to find breweries that can do no wrong wether they be good or great. My list of breweries that I havent had a disappointing beer are Cigar City, Smuttynose and Bear Republic are a few that come to mind.
  31. krl2112

    krl2112 Crusader (716) Nov 10, 2012 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    Two Brothers for me.
  32. SalukiAlum

    SalukiAlum Initiate (0) Dec 19, 2010 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    I forgot about The Dissident and Red Chair. But I need my Abyss/Black Butte fix and at the price and availability!! Top tier beers.
    denver10 likes this.
  33. SalukiAlum

    SalukiAlum Initiate (0) Dec 19, 2010 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    I think of these breweries as the type where you try all their beers, maybe grab a pint and your ready to go? (but the beer was GOOD)
  34. pjeagles

    pjeagles Initiate (162) May 29, 2005 New Mexico
    Beer Trader

    Left Coast. Nothing offensive, but nothing I want to buy again. Lost Coast. Lakefront. Maybe some other breweries that start with the letter L that I can't think of.
    And dare I say...aside from Bourbon County and its variants, I don't care to buy Goose Island beers.
  35. slangtruth

    slangtruth Initiate (198) Jan 8, 2012 Massachusetts

    I'll offer up Lagunitas. Everything I've had is good, and I think their setup with the year rounds and constant introductions of short lived specials is smart. I'm up to having "had" close to ten varieties now, all (except Hop Stoopid) bought in sixes, and the only one I've bought twice was Brown Shugga, which I liked more than I thought I would. I'll probably buy more Sucks because I was recommending it to a friend of mine who I'll be sitting around with next month, but just for myself one six would have been plenty. There's been nothing wrong with any of them, just nothing to draw me back once I'd had a couple of any given flavor.
  36. abraxel

    abraxel Initiate (0) Aug 28, 2009 Michigan

    That's exactly the list I was going to post. Arcadia and New Holland both make some really good beer, and I could come to consider them "great" if they improve with time. As for Arbor... I've always wanted to love Arbor, I just wish they didn't make so much mediocre beer. They have a few good options, but their sours are the only thing keeping them in the same sentence as Arcadia and New Holland, IMO. They do seem to be experimenting more lately, though, so I'm hoping they'll step up to the plate and really show what they can do.

    Edit: Another thought on Arbor Brewing: The base beers for most of their (rather good) sours are just the beers from their (mediocre) standard lineup. I wonder how much better those sours could be if they were based on better beer...
  37. Droogins

    Droogins Initiate (0) Sep 4, 2012 Massachusetts

    This thing right here that I said earlier is false. I just had 3Beans. I, uh, will be having it again.
  38. Freggs

    Freggs Initiate (0) Nov 18, 2006 New York

    In Upstate NY we have a few...Ithaca Beer Co. (especially now...), Wagner Valley Brewing, Middle Ages Brewery, Market Street Brewery, and Yorkholo Brewing Company. All have beers I thoroughly enjoy, but others that just don't cut the mustard.
  39. LegalBrew87

    LegalBrew87 Initiate (0) Mar 6, 2012 California

    Coronado Brewing
    jgluck likes this.
  40. BostonHops

    BostonHops Initiate (0) Sep 21, 2011 Massachusetts

    sam adams is my classic example of a good-not-great brewery. i think they put out some reasonably tasty beers (obviously some more so than others) but - utopias aside - it's pretty infrequent that any of their stuff blows my hair back.
    Brew42 likes this.
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