Brewers Association’s Top 50 U.S. Craft Brewing Companies

The Brewers Associationjust came out with its list of the Top 50 U.S. Craft Brewing Companies. This isn’t my list but it’s worth sharing.

1 Boston Beer Co. Boston MA

2 Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. Chico CA

3 New Belgium Brewing Co. Fort Collins CO

4 Gambrinus San Antonio TX

5 Lagunitas Brewing Co. Petaluma CA

6 Deschutes Brewery Bend OR

7 Bell’s Brewery, Inc. Galesburg MI

8 Duvel Moortgat USA Kansas City MO &

Cooperstown NY

9 Brooklyn Brewery Brooklyn NY

10 Stone Brewing Co. Escondido CA

11 Matt Brewing Co. Utica NY

12 Harpoon Brewery Boston MA

13 Dogfish Head Craft Brewery Milton DE

14 Shipyard Brewing Co. Portland ME

15 Abita Brewing Co. Abita Springs LA

16 Firestone Walker Brewing Co. Paso Robles CA

17 Alaskan Brewing Co. Juneau AK

18 New Glarus Brewing Co. New Glarus WI

19 SweetWater Brewing Co. Atlanta GA

20 Great Lakes Brewing Co. Cleveland OH

21 Anchor Brewing Co. San Francisco CA

22 Long Trail Brewing Co. Bridgewater Corners VT

23 Summit Brewing Co. St. Paul MN

24 Oskar Blues Brewery Longmont CO

25 Full Sail Brewing Co. Hood River OR

26 Founders Brewing Co. Grand Rapids MI

27 Rogue Ales Newport OR

28 Victory Brewing Co. Downingtown PA

29 Ballast Point Brewing Co. San Diego CA

30 Ninkasi Brewing Co. Eugene OR

31 Southern Tier Brewing Co. Lakewood NY

32 Cold Spring Brewing Co./Third Street Brewhouse Cold Spring MN

33 Flying Dog Brewery Frederick MD

34 Odell Brewing Co. Fort Collins CO

35 Stevens Point Brewery Co. Stevens Point WI

36 Bear Republic Brewing Co. Cloverdale CA

37 Lost Coast Brewery and Cafe Eureka CA

38 Left Hand Brewing Co. Longmont CO

39 CraftWorks Restaurants & Breweries, Inc. Chattanooga & Louisville TN/CO

40 Breckenridge Brewery Denver CO

41 Karl Strauss Brewing Co. San Diego CA

42 Blue Point Brewing Co. Patchogue NY

43 Sixpoint Brewery Brooklyn NY

44 BJ’s Chicago Pizza & Brewery, Inc. Huntington Beach CA

45 North Coast Brewing Co. Inc. Fort Bragg CA

46 Uinta Brewing Co. Salt Lake City UT

47 Allagash Brewing Co. Portland ME

48 Saint Arnold Brewing Co. Houston TX

49 Gordon Biersch Brewing Co. San Jose CA

50 21st Amendment Brewery San Francisco CA


I’ve tried beers from twenty-two of these breweries, and that’s not bad. It’s not impressive, but it’s definitely not bad. I’m pretty happy that a few of my favorite breweries made the list. I’ve been going to 21st Amendment for years, and I’m pleased that they were able to crack the list and gain a little more exposure. I’m a big fan of Bear Republic, Stone Brewing, Ninkasi, Anchor Brewing, and Lagunitas, so seeing these breweries make the cut just reaffirms my taste in craft brews. I like Sierra Nevada, but I’m really surprised to see them so high on the list. Stone and Lagunitas make much better beers with a lot more variety. There are a few breweries that are decidedly overrated and undeserving of a place so high up on this list (Rogue Ales and New Belgium, I’m looking at you). There are a lot of breweries that I can’t wait to experience and Critically Rate. This isn’t just a list of top U.S. craft breweries, this is a bucket list. And really, no Russian River brews? No Pliny the Elder? No Pliny the Younger? Seems like a pretty incomplete list to me.

Critically Rated at 12/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Youngurl

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