The Daily Meal is a well-known food and drink lifestyle site that covers a complete epicurean experience for cooks, food lovers, wine, beer and spirit connoisseurs, discerning diners and everyone in-between. The Daily Meal also likes a good list, some of which include the 50 Most Powerful People in Food, America’s Most Successful Chefs, 101 Best Restaurants in America and 150 Best Bars in America.
We at Craft Brewing Business also like a good list; so when The Daily Meal folks sent over the 2015 edition of the 50 Best Craft Breweries in America ranking, we figured we’d pass it along. The Daily Meal asked readers and craft beer lovers to weigh-in with a survey unlike any other they had curated before.
“With hundreds of American craft breweries to choose from, it felt like an impossible task to determine the best,” said Lauren Gordon, managing editor at The Daily Meal, who spearheaded the project. “It’s like asking folks to choose their favorite star in the sky or their favorite petal on a flower; each is beautifully unique and appealing in its own way.”
The list started with last year’s roster of best craft breweries, enhanced with more than 4,000 write-in submissions from Daily Meal readers for breweries that didn’t make the list. The list was winnowed down to 585 breweries from more than 20 states. Some 2,200 beer lovers voted on their choices, with an eye to taste and variety. When the results were tabulated, California was still king of craft brews, as it was last year, but there was a rise in Michigan spots, as well as those from Ohio and Colorado. Another cool trend? Out of the five New York-based breweries, three of them call Brooklyn home.
Actually ranking these breweries against each other is admittedly a silly, subjective exercise. For us, they’d all tie for first (read: don’t be mad at us if your brewery didn’t make the list!). But, having said that, it’s still pretty fun to think and argue about.
Anyway, if your brewery didn’t make the cut, take to the comments section to make your case, or tweet using the hashtag #50bestbreweries.
The 50 Best Craft Breweries in 2015
50. Tallgrass Brewing Company, Manhattan, Kan.
49. Toppling Goliath Brewing Co., Decorah, Iowa
48. Brewing Company, Abita Springs, La.
47. Uinta Brewing, Salt Lake City
46. Yuengling, Pottsville, Pa.
45. Elysian Brewing Company, Seattle
44. Terrapin Brewing, Athens, Ga.
43. Prairie Artisan Ales, Tulsa, Okla.
42. Alaska Brewing Company, Juneau, Alaska
41. Dark Horse Brewing Company, Marshall, Mich.
40. Smuttynose Brewing Company, Hampton, N.H.
39. Flying Dog Brewery, Frederick, Md.
38. Jester King Brewery, Austin
37. AleSmith Brewing Company, San Diego
36. Sixpoint Brewery, Brooklyn
35. Tröegs, Hershey, Pa.
34. Great Lakes Brewing Company, Cleveland
33. Boulevard Brewing Company, Kansas City, Mo.
32. 21st Amendment Brewery, San Francisco
31. The Bruery, Anaheim, Calif.
30. Bear Republic Brewing Company, Healdsburg, Calif.
29. Evil Twin Brewing, Brooklyn
28. Ninkasi Brewing, Eugene, Ore.
27. Great Divide Brewing Company, Denver
26. Brewery, Brooklyn
25. Odell Brewing Company, Fort Collins, Colo.
24. Goose Island Beer Company, Chicago, Ill.
23. The Alchemist Brewery, Waterbury, Vt.
22. New Glarus Brewing Company, Green County, Wis.
21. Southern Tier Brewing Company, Lakewood, N.Y.
20. Green Flash Brewing Company, San Diego
19. Brewery Ommegang, Cooperstown, N.Y.
18. Left Hand Brewing, Longmont, Colo.
17. Three Floyds Brewing Company, Munster, Ind.
16. Avery Brewing Company, Boulder, Colo.
15. Victory Brewing Company, Downingtown, Pa.
14. Allagash Brewing Company, Portland, Maine
13. New Belgium Brewing Company, Fort Collins, Colo.
12. Cigar City Brewing, Tampa, Fla.
11. Firestone Walker Brewing Co., Paso Robles, Calif.
10. Oskar Blues Brewery, Longmont, Colo.
9. Sierra Nevada Brewing Company, Chico, Calif.
8. Ballast Point Brewing Company, San Diego
7. Russian River Brewing Company, Santa Rosa, Calif.
6. Bell’s Brewery, Kalamazoo, Mich.
5. Founders Brewing Co., Grand Rapids, Mich.
4. Deschutes Brewery, Bend, Ore.
3. Stone Brewing Co., San Diego
2. Lagunitas Brewing Company, Petaluma, Calif.
1. Dogfish Head Brewery, Milton, Del.