Beer Rankings Can Be Boring

March 28, 2011 at 3:02 am

Tom Keith


Three Floyds, in nearby Munster Indiana, is the best brewery in the world for 2011. Out of more than 10,000 brewers worldwide.


That’s the same thing Ratebeer said last year, 2010. That’s what they said in 2009.

This is getting awfully repetitive.

It is based on nearly three million reviews – and some of these reviewers actually sound like they know something about beers.

For example, they also rated Revolution Brewing among the top five new breweries world wide to open in 2010. (Humbly, we’ll note that we predicted great things here.)

Grand Rapids, Michigan’s Founders Brewing moved up to #2, its Michigan neighbor, Bells ranked #7, and local fave, Chicago’s Goose Island, made it into the top ten. Among others in the region, New Glarus came in at #35, and Chicagoans Half Acre and Piece earned the #75 and #82 spots, respectively.

Goose also had a good showing for its individual beers. Overall, surprisingly, Goose’s Rare Bourbon County Stout edged out Three Floyds Dark Lord Russian Imperial Stout, coming in as the fifth and seventh best beers in the world respectively (although note that Ratebeer has a strong bias toward big, strong beers — 17 of the top 25 beers are Imperial Stouts, with the others all being similarly powerful beers). Founders Kentucky Breakfast Stout also made it into the top ten (#9).

Other notables in the top 50 include Bell’s Hopslam (#12), Founders Canadian Breakfast Stout (#14), Goose’s “Regular” Bourbon County Stout (#19), Coffee version of the same (#23), Three Floyds Vanilla Bean Barrel Aged Dark Lord Russian Imperial Stout (#35), Goose’s Vanilla Bourbon County Stout (#37), and Founders Breakfast Stout (#47).

So, I’m not yawning. It’s a great time to be a beer drinker in these parts. I’ve got my Dark Lord Day tickets, so all’s well with the world (well, maybe if your world is limited to the Western Hemisphere).

Full results can be found at