Three Floyds Brewery Listened. Thanks, Nick. I owe you a beer.
Another open letter to Nick Floyd:
Hey Nick. Yeah, it’s me again. And I owe you a beer.
In my letter last year, I pleaded with you to give up the spotlight, and end your four-year run as Ratebeer’s World’s Greatest Brewery. My letter ended with “So, please, give it a rest. I’ll make it worth your while. If you come in #2 next year, c’mon up here to Evanston and I’ll buy you a beer. Do you like PBR?”
Nick, or somebody else at Three Floyds, listened. (Reality check – they probably didn’t listen. They’re probably not even aware of this tiny little blog. But then, you know how those Northwest Indiana types can be…)
Nick, you and your guys at Three Floyds did come in at #2 out of over 13,000 breweries in this year’s ratings, based on over 4.5 million reviews by hard-core beer enthusiasts. Hill Farmstead Brewery, out of Greensboro, Vermont, received the top title. And I know you’ve welcomed them to have the title.
[As an aside, Hill Farmstead was awarded Best New Brewery in the World last year. So, Nick, watch your back. Pipeworks, in Chicago at North and Western, will be a challenge next year for World’s Best. This year, Pipeworks got the Best New Brewery in the World title. Although, among all breweries, Pipeworks came in at only #39 out of the 13,000+ breweries.]
Looking at the ratings, though, Nick, you located your brewery well. The Local Beet region seems to be the place to be for anyone who wants to explore the fine beer scene. Of the top five of Ratebeer’s Best Breweries in the World, three are relatively local. Founders, of Grand Rapids, Michigan, known especially for its Kentucky Breakfast Stout (Ratebeer’s #1 Imperial Stout) came in just behind you, at #3. Again, watch your back.
And Bell’s, nearby in Kalamazoo (actually, the production brewery is in Comstock), came in at #5 out of 13,000. I still have a few bottles of Bell’s limited-edition Hopslam (Ratebeer’s sixth best beer in the world) in the trunk of my car – if you happen to run into me this weekend, I might share one with you.
Others of your brethren also deserve a pat on the back. Warre, Michigan’s Kuhnhenn Brewing made #11, New Glarus ( a personal favorite) was rated #25, and Dark Horse, out of Marshall, Michigan came in at #29.
An unusual choice was Ferndale, Michigan’s B. Nektar Meadery, at #31. I suppose it could be considered among the best breweries that don’t brew beer.
Among the rest in the top 100, Goose Island came in only at #60, although Bourbon County Stout, which may be becoming its fine beer signature brew, was rated the world’s eight best brew. Jolly Pumpkin, from Dexter Michigan, rated #64, Chicago’s Half Acre (probably driven by its signature Daisy Cutter Pale Ale) made #66, Chicago’s Revolution was #90, and Central Waters, just outside of Stevens Point, Wisconsin, in Amherst, made it into the top 100 out of 13,000, at #95.
As you might expect, a few regional breweries dropped out of the top 100 this year. Nick, don’t let that happen to you. Please don’t repeat your Bully Guppy, Euro Trash, or Dolemite Malt Liquor. All of us beer lovers in the region want you to stay at the top of the ratings.