Your Top 5 Brewers in the World

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by edthehead, Nov 16, 2019.

  1. beardown2489

    beardown2489 Devotee (428) Oct 5, 2012 Illinois

    With all due respect Jack, i can’t confirm what you’re saying. My store typically receives FW between 3-6 weeks old and it goes directly to cold storage. I know you and i have talked about these issues before but I’ll continue to chime in and remind people that is is possible if you have a store that educates people on good beer and cold storage. It’s not a fair fight in a lot of stores/markets because these distributors and retailers typically over order and refuse to store beer cold. But if you’re ever in the west suburbs of Chicago, I’ll get you some fresh FW.
    rgordon likes this.
  2. SFACRKnight

    SFACRKnight Poo-Bah (1,804) Jan 20, 2012 Colorado
    Society Trader

    Take that nonsense to restaurant advocate.
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  3. alucard6679

    alucard6679 Initiate (0) Jul 29, 2012 Arizona

    Sierra Nevada
    St Bernardus
    Firestone Walker
  4. Affinity

    Affinity Aspirant (258) Nov 24, 2018 Missouri
    Society Trader

    1. Side Project
    2. Hill Farmstead
    3. 3F
    4. SARA
    5. DeGarde
  5. Clibb

    Clibb Initiate (67) Jun 23, 2013 New Jersey

    My list at this very moment in time stream of consciousness would go like this.

    Allagash- number one with a bullet, bangers every time, consistently purchase
    Cantillon - The times I have had their beers it was truly special and stood out. Inspirational
    Treehouse - Gorgeous brewery and sets the standard
    Tired Hands - Romanticized from visiting, beers and food created a lasting memory.
    Carton- geography bias and really respect the culinary approach to beer.
    Bells- have not had a bad beer from them and keep coming back to them over and over.

    Of course there is no right answer, it’s an opinion and if you asked me in a week it would be different.
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  6. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,836) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania


    beardown2489 likes this.
  7. KingforaDay

    KingforaDay Crusader (716) Aug 5, 2010 New Jersey

    Appreciate the NJ list but Kane does not crack your top 5?
  8. mogulskier

    mogulskier Initiate (118) Feb 3, 2019 California

    Alvarado Street
    Tree House
    Russian River
    JayORear likes this.
  9. dennis3951

    dennis3951 Initiate (0) Mar 6, 2008 New Jersey

  10. Domingo

    Domingo Poo-Bah (2,681) Apr 23, 2005 Colorado

    Kloster Andechs
    Het Anker
    Hill Farmstead
    Sierra Nevada

    #5 I'm not sure about. I have a lot of faith in the process that Cantillon and 3F use, but I don't know if their brewing techniques have much to do with it. Their success is more about the process afterward.
    If we're counting their process as brewing, then I'll go with either one of them. If not, I'll choose La Cumbre instead.
    DiUr and herrburgess like this.
  11. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,240) Feb 15, 2010 New York

    Yeah. It’s all good. I’m gently teasing. Please use your own criteria. I read your list as if you thought more highly of The Bruery’s beers but ranked Trillium higher because of their food - which I find odd on a list of “top brewers.” It’s fine if you feel that way. Personally, I couldn’t care less if a brewery even had a taproom for me to consider them, especially considering how selective one needs to be in the exercise. If they only served Doritos, it wouldn’t be a factor at all. That’s just me. Cheers.
    dennis3951, skiking70 and rozzom like this.
  12. jhavs

    jhavs Poo-Bah (1,947) Apr 16, 2015 New York
    Society Trader

    At some point I hope you get to try some of their lagers from the philosophical series (e.g. Poetica, Memoria, etc.)
    They are excellent and as special as their saisons.
    thebeers likes this.
  13. MAS

    MAS Initiate (0) Apr 4, 2006 California

    Firestone Walker
    Russian River
    Schneider in Munich
    Christian Moerlein
  14. B_Horne

    B_Horne Initiate (33) Jun 12, 2014 California

    Trying to go with Breweries I have more experience with and places where I have enjoyed multiple styles of beers.

    Sierra Nevada
    The Bruery (Terreux/Off Shoot)
    Casa Agria
    Alvarado Street

    My 5th should probably be Hill Farmstead but I haven't had enough from them to add them to my list. I also left off some like DeGarde and Rare Barrel due to only having one main beer style.
  15. jzlyo

    jzlyo Poo-Bah (2,400) Mar 4, 2012 Iowa

    Sierra Nevada, Paulaner, Fullers, Half Acre and New Glarus.
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  16. thebeers

    thebeers Poo-Bah (3,298) Sep 10, 2014 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    Would love to try them. HF is definitely in my Top 5 regardless.
    jhavs likes this.
  17. hopley

    hopley Meyvn (1,336) Feb 24, 2010 Massachusetts

    Hill Farmstead
    Drie Fontenein
    Other Half

    So much rests in the eye of the beholder, beer preferences and location. Nothing more needs to be said about Hill. I love Drie but believe it or not, do NOT love Cantillon. While I could argue Allagash has more of a national presence and reputation than Oxbow, I could also argue Oxbow is one of the best farmhouse / wild ale breweries on the East Coast and deserves mention on this list. Allagash, as @beardown2489 said - has never let me down -- but adding on to this, they most always impress me and inspire endless devotion from me (this would seem to be a common theme for breweries that make this list for me as I could probably expand to a top 10...). And while Other Half can be mentioned along with the likes of Tree House, Trillium, Tired Hands, etc. - I'd put it a notch above all of them. Tree House - great IPAs but if you don't like milk stouts as much... Trillium - my local - while I've easily had more of their beer than any others and still really do love their beer - their wage-gate history, etc. still looms large for me... Tired Hands - love them to death and almost put them in place of Other Half but just haven't had the consistently excellent hops from them, and haven't tried enough of their wilds to put them on the list. I could add more but there you have it! Cheers!
    beardown2489 likes this.
  18. DiUr

    DiUr Initiate (195) Aug 14, 2014 Spain

    Nice that you mention Het Anker as I´ve been giving them some love lately, both in the 'beers I inexplicably haven´t had' and 'just revisiting' categories. I took advantage of the (@zid) dubbel tasting and (of course) got out of the Abbey to explore around a little bit, and see what those secular bastards in Flanders were at.


    If talking Het Anker I must say Ambrio is a pretty damn fine beer, and possibly my favourite from them. Not just one of the very best that day against the dubbels, but somehow managing to get into my late Belgian rotation (once on tap in France included, right after the 'discovery'). It is also worth having a look;



    These Flemish families have been making great beer for ages under the long shadow being cast by the Trappists. I´ve been tempted by the (GC) tripel this very same week, so after reading your post I can see myself fixing this tomorrow, plus maybe another Ambrio!
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  19. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,836) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania


    Pardon me as I go to make some :popcorn::wink:

  20. DiUr

    DiUr Initiate (195) Aug 14, 2014 Spain

    The '3rd Best Restaurant in the World' (whatever that means) is less than an hour from home, and he 'just' does grill in the end, the smoke kissing the very best raw products in a balanced, enhancing manner...A bit like Schlenkerla. :wink:
    herrburgess likes this.
  21. hopley

    hopley Meyvn (1,336) Feb 24, 2010 Massachusetts

    I guess pretty much apologies to everyone; my tastebuds are still maturing...
  22. unlikelyspiderperson

    unlikelyspiderperson Poo-Bah (1,639) Mar 12, 2013 California
    Society Trader

    don't worry, this is a safe space, and no one will hold your objectively incorrect opinion against you :wink:
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  23. Ice_Cream_And_IPAs

    Ice_Cream_And_IPAs Initiate (0) Jul 16, 2016 New York

    My (subjective top 5):

    Hill Farmstead — domination across so many categories + I hear the location is beautiful.

    Weihenstephaner — might be a basic pick for a German brewer, but for my taste, their stuff is the best

    3F — could have easily been Cantillon, but this 3F is my preference, based on the stuff I've been able to try so far.The Framboos is my favorite lambic.
    SN — what more could you ask for from a brewer of SN's size? Properly dated bottles and cans, great style variability, community impact, never sold out.

    Tree House — New England IPAs and DIPAs are my favorite types of beer, so I had to include THE brewery for this style. Tree House may not be the "it" brewery IPA brewery anymore, and objectively, there might be stronger hazy contestants, but these are the guys that have turned neipa into NEIPA. Still a bar for other beermakers accross the country to catch.

    Honorable Mention: Russian River. Supplication is my favorite beer of all time. I had found a way to insert these guys in my list

    HOPTOMIC_BOMB Disciple (318) Feb 18, 2014 California

    Hill farmstead
    Hair of the dog
    Toppling Goliath
  25. socon67

    socon67 Poo-Bah (2,324) Jun 18, 2010 New York

    I'm interpreting this as "*Your* Top 5 Breweries", which to me means I've had multiple beers from them, I've been to their brewery\taproom, and factoring my feeling of their products. Using this, I will be filtering this down quite a bit.

    1) Russian River
    2) Jester King
    3) Brasserie Dieu du Ciel
    4) Tree House
    5) Firestone Walker
    sweetLew and Trull like this.
  26. Insomniac

    Insomniac Aspirant (237) Nov 5, 2019 Canada (ON)

    In no order.

    1) Brasserie Dieu du Ciel - Consistently high quality across a wide variety of styles and a place I get to visit regularly. Péché Mortel is an all-time favorite of mine.
    2) Unibroue - With La Fin du Monde, Maudite and Trois Pistoles, they brew three of the absolute best beers in the world and have several others that are exceptional.
    3) Sierra Nevada - This brewery basically got me started in this area with their Pale Ale and I can’t say I’ve ever been disappointed with something I’ve drank from them.
    4) Samuel Smith’s - A brewery I’ve been drinking from off and on for decades. Half a dozen truly exceptional beers that have stood the test of time for me and as a high standard of brewing quality.
    5) Fuller’s - Similar to what was said above about quality and longevity in my drinking experience. Half a dozen exceptional beers, with the Vintage Ale being a highlight of any year.

    Extremely honourable mentions would go to Rochefort, Chimay, Stone, Dogfish Head and Driftwood.
    ChicagoJ likes this.
  27. Dan_K

    Dan_K Zealot (513) Nov 8, 2013 Colorado

    Hard for me to pick but maybe:

    Drie Fonteinen
    Casey Brewing & Blending
  28. ChicagoJ

    ChicagoJ Meyvn (1,258) Feb 2, 2015 Illinois

    If I can bring five brewers to an island (alpha order)

    AleSmith (San Diego, California)
    Bell's (Kalamazoo, Michigan)
    Cantillon (Brussels, Belgium)
    Revolution (Chicago, Illinois)
    Rochefort (Rochefort, Belgium)

    Many arguments for a dozen plus more, this list covers many styles including my favorite styles over a breadth of offerings, and my favorite breweries to visit and or drink. A Top 10 or 20 would be easier to come up with, including many offered above, but these are my five.

    I haven't been to the two Belgium breweries, but I really want to rectify that in the next year or two.
    JBogan likes this.
  29. laketang

    laketang Meyvn (1,297) Mar 22, 2015 Arizona

    Hill Farmstead #1 (anna)
    Cantillon #2 (gambrinus de rose , iris )
    Firestone walker #3 ( parabola, sucaba )
    Russian river # 4 ( pliney the elder, blind pig )
    Bells # 5 (black note, hopslam )

    Tough to compile, could easily change list and or order.
    JBogan and ChicagoJ like this.
  30. shadyside

    shadyside Disciple (348) Feb 27, 2011 Georgia

    Unibroue, Ommegang, Bell's, Service, St. Bernardus in no particular order.
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  31. TheIPAHunter

    TheIPAHunter Poo-Bah (2,868) Aug 12, 2007 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    John Kimmich
    Steve Dresler
    Shaun Hill
    Nate Lanier
    Paul Molitor
  32. rozzom

    rozzom Meyvn (1,008) Jan 22, 2011 New York

    which one were you drinking when the boks beat england
  33. Blogjackets

    Blogjackets Zealot (576) Nov 22, 2017 Ohio
    Society Trader

    Molitor beat out Yount?
  34. TheIPAHunter

    TheIPAHunter Poo-Bah (2,868) Aug 12, 2007 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    Molitor is more consistent with his wort times.
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  35. RacerX5k

    RacerX5k Devotee (400) Feb 11, 2013 Pennsylvania

    I'm just going to go with 5 all time best ... I'll add current notes.

    1. Goose Island (2012), certainly not since.
    2. Alewerks (2014) my all time favorite beer. 5 or 6 trips to Northern VA that Aug thru Sep walk into several Total Wines buy a case. Before the masses realized how good the Bourbon Barrel Porter was. At one time the BBP was even distributed to Philly. And, funny, the Virginia Gentleman bourbon actually stinks. And the base Rapadou, amazing. Wish I could get these again, not driving to Williamsburg.
    3. Founders, #1 brewery in the world right.
    4. Lagunitas. #2 right now. The 2015 High Westified and 2018 Willettized so good.
    5. I don't really have a number 5. Many good beers, but my all time list is dominated by 1-4.
    #75 RacerX5k, Nov 21, 2019
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2019
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  36. shadyside

    shadyside Disciple (348) Feb 27, 2011 Georgia

    That would have been Teufel Hunden, the Octoberfest from Service.
  37. Sheppard

    Sheppard Meyvn (1,353) Mar 16, 2013 Virginia

    I guess there's a distinction to be made between preferring one and liking/loving one but not the other. They aren't exactly carbon copies of each other and do some different things really well.

    Obviously, I'm in Oxbow's corner for this, but I would also add, since your comment about wild ales reminded me, that Oxbow's Native/Wild is the best American spontaneous beer that I've had.
  38. jhavs

    jhavs Poo-Bah (1,947) Apr 16, 2015 New York
    Society Trader

    These are my 5 favorite, my personal top five in the world, not necessarily the 5 that I think should be considered the best in the world. Some would be in both lists.

    • Hill Farmstead. A place I go all the time and probably makes up a majority of the beer I drink.
    • Lawson's Finest. Another old favorite, never disappoints and a great business.
    • Side Project. Love all their brews that I have tried. I seek them out via trade most often. #1 on my list of next places to visit.
    • River Roost. Close, great beer, nice employees, on tap at all the places I hang out, new guy on the block. Volume wise creeping up on HF for my consumption.
    • The Alchemist. I'll probably never take them off my list. Every once in a while I crack a Heady can and remember how great my first one was. Always quality.
    Honorable Mention:
    Jester King. Great beer, great location, reminds me of really fun trip.
    Allagash. Always great quality, great company.
    Oxbow. Fun place to hang out (only been to Portland), great brews.
    Trillium. Not sure if anything is better than Congress St circa 2015 in the bomber bottles. I still enjoy everything.
  39. Blogjackets

    Blogjackets Zealot (576) Nov 22, 2017 Ohio
    Society Trader

    Well if it’s a brewery then you need a Cooper. Cecil was good.
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  40. readyski

    readyski Aspirant (267) Jun 4, 2005 California

    In addition to the OPs qualifiers of quality, notoriety, history, creativity, craftsmanship, and maybe even diversity of styles and brewery/taproom experience, I add access and affordability (and not all weighted equally), I have the following:
    Sierra Nevada
    Russian River
    Firestone Walker

    I know, label me homeboy :flushed:
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