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Best beers from every state

  • Best beers from every state

    If beer is a universal language, Americans have spoken their own version of that language through the best brews in the 50 states and Washington D.C.

    Traveling around the country to discover each state's top-rated drafts brings on a variety matched only by the diversity of the United States itself. Visitors can sip brews aged in bourbon barrels in Washington, or warm up in Alaska with "A Deal with the Devil." Ordering Connecticut's top beer may cause giggles, and seeing double is a side effect in Idaho. There are heavy Russian influences in Nevada, Montana, and Arizona,” and a great "Mexican Brunch" in New Jersey. If you're still hungry, try a "Kentucky Brunch" in Iowa or have "Dinner" in Maine. "Black Gold" can be found in the hills of Wisconsin, and travelers might get lost in "Bourbon Paradise" while trekking through Oklahoma.

    The best beers in each state feature drinks that are rich in flavor, and some, like Indiana's Marshmallow Handjee, that are steep in price. Listed alcohol content ranges from 5.8% to a whopping 17.9% in Alaska.

    To find the best beers in America, Stacker mined January 2020 data from BeerAdvocate, a website that gathers user scores for beer in real-time. BeerAdvocate makes its determinations by gathering consumer ratings for all 50 states and Washington D.C. and applying a weighted rank to them. The weighted rank pulls the beer toward the list's average based on the number of ratings it has and aims to allow lesser-known beers to increase in the rank. Only beers with at least 10 rankings to be considered; we took it a step further to only include beers with at least 100 user rankings in our gallery. Keep reading to find out what the best beer is in all 50 states.

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  • Alabama: El Gordo

    - Score: 4.51
    - Ratings: 137
    - Brewing company: Good People Brewing Company
    - Style: Russian Imperial Stout
    - Alcohol by volume (ABV): 13.9%

    Since locals and Good People Brewing owners Jason Malone and Michael Sellers tapped their first keg in 2008 and began canning in 2011, the Birmingham duo created the state's best beer with El Gordo. Branded as a "muscular" 13.9% imperial stout, the beer birthed Di­a del Gordo, aka El Gordo Day, an annual release party every December that draws locals together for the cult beer, along with music and food.

  • Alaska: A Deal With The Devil

    - Score: 4.38
    - Ratings: 1,096
    - Brewing company: Anchorage Brewing Company
    - Style: American Barleywine
    - Alcohol by volume (ABV): 17.3%

    "A Deal with the Devil," the 12-ounce bottle of the notoriously named ale, is manufactured by the Anchorage Brewing Company. When the six separate barley wine ale series was released in 2017, "causing an overnight tent party,” a reporter suggested the company's owner must have sealed a deal with Satan in order to produce the pleasurably sinful pint. By the looks of the bottle label, a handshake between a demon and human, he just may have.

  • Arizona: White Russian Imperial Stout

    - Score: 4.37
    - Ratings: 104
    - Brewing company: Sun Up Brewing Co.
    - Style: American Imperial Stout
    - Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.2%

    The Phoenix SunUp Brewing Co. saw the light when it produced the 9.2% White Russian Imperial Stout, causing the country to take notice,” and name it the best beer in the Grand Canyon State. The U.S. company reached back into European history to name the type of brew enjoyed by the Russian imperial court. Today, the beer sells out within days of being tapped.

  • Arkansas: BDCS

    - Score: 4.52
    - Ratings: 497
    - Brewing company: Ozark Beer Co.
    - Style: American Imperial Stout
    - Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.2%

    A bottle of BDCS proves there is a lot of power in just four letters. Men's Journal boasts that the aged vanilla and charred-oak bourbon beer "is amongst the truest to its spirited roots," which was proven true at the sold-out 2018 release party. Like the national magazine, the local paper the Fayetteville Flier calls the brew the most sought-after beer.

  • California: Pliny The Younger

    - Score: 4.75
    - Ratings: 3,265
    - Brewing company: Russian River Brewing Company
    - Style: American Imperial IPA
    - Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.25%

    The sister suds to Russian River’s breakthrough double IPA, Pliny The Elder, the triple IPA Pliny the Younger ups the ABV value to double digits. Unsurprisingly from a triple IPA, it’s heavily hops forward with reviewers praising its “Aggressive hops, aggressive maltiness” and saying it’s “absolute perfection!”

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  • Colorado: Ten FIDY - Bourbon Barrel Aged

    - Score: 4.48
    - Ratings: 2,123
    - Brewing company: Oskar Blues Grill & Brew
    - Style: American Imperial Stout
    - Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.5%

    Enjoy beer but want the ABV of wine? Then Oskar Blues’ barrel-aged Ten FIDY is for you. Reviewers report the beer is “sweet and powerful” and “smooth and rich.” However, this beer isn’t for the taste-adverse, the complex flavor includes “espresso, burnt sugar, rich chocolate, caramel...vanilla, oak, bourbon,” a dizzying combination by any measure.

  • Connecticut: Fuzzy Baby Ducks IPA

    - Score: 4.5
    - Ratings: 1,080
    - Brewing company: New England Brewing Co.
    - Style: New England IPA
    - Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.2%

    It's all about branding for this #1 rated beer named after a band of yellow furry birds. Brewer and owner Robert Leonard decided the Citra hops, blended with mango and papaya, should have a silly moniker that would make men feel self-conscious when ordering it. "If [a name or design] makes us laugh, that's the common line," Leonard said of the naming process.

  • Delaware: 90 Minute IPA

    - Score: 4.3
    - Ratings: 16,214
    - Brewing company: Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
    - Style: American Imperial IPA
    - Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9%

    Named after Dogfish Head Road in Maine, the East Coast brewer cornered the market when it became the first to add hops throughout the entire fermenting process. To perfect the 90-minute boil by adding just the right amount of hops throughout, the brew crew used a vibrating tabletop football game duct-taped to a ladder above the cauldron. The game would drop pellets of hops into the beer intermittently over the course of the 90-minute boil, concocting a less bitter brew.

  • District of Columbia: On The Wings Of Armageddon

    - Score: 4.34
    - Ratings: 2,085
    - Brewing company: DC Brau Brewing Co.
    - Style: American Imperial IPA
    - Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.2%

    As D.C.'s own ale, On the Wings of Armageddon was one of the first brewskis to be sent to furloughed workers in January. As a way to score "liquid therapy," all federal employees had to do was show up at the brewery with identification and pick up any donated beer a friend or loved one may have left for them. Though the red copper-colored imperial lager is rated for its fine taste, being given one for free assuredly makes the malt taste that much better.

  • Florida: Hunahpu's Imperial Stout - Double Barrel Aged

    - Score: 4.79
    - Ratings: 1,618
    - Brewing company: Cigar City Brewing
    - Style: American Imperial Stout
    - Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11%

    Double rum barrel-aged beer from 50% rum and 50% apple brandy containers is the best way to describe Florida's spicy stout out of Tampa. To prove it's worth, tickets to taste the beer at Hunahpu's Day, Cigar City Brewing's annual craft release party each March can cost up to $370.

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