10 Most Popular Craft Beer Brands In The United States - My Survey

Crossing The Ocean

Crossing the ocean to have my first incursion into The United States I was nervous to say the least. I was born and lived all my life in Barcelona, which is, as most know, an awesome cultural city. Despite that being the case, I expected the United States to blow my mind, and it didn´t disappoint me at all! I went to see some of the best event I´ve been to in my life, but what really surprised me was the food and drinking variety everywhere I went.

I truly believe that craft beer is the real beer and the only one we should drink. Sadly, in The United States, the sales of the most popular alcoholic beverage in the world are ruled by factory-bottled beer. The most sold beer for 2017 was the Bud Lite with more than two thousand million dollars of profit. This statistic shows that the market in the United States is largely in the hands of the biggest brands.

Being the craft-beer defender that I am I decided to break with it and try as many of them as I could in every city I was. This is my humble selection.

Founder´s Brewing All Day IPA

This beer is exactly what I needed. A beer tailor-made for my staying in the big northern country. How so? Easy, it is a session beer that is really tasty and you can drink all day long. The people at Founder´s were a go-to in my list because of their strong beers and because all materials used on the making are fresh and healthy. That being said, it took me only a moment to try this IPA and fall in love with how light and how tasty it is. That is a difficult balance these people definitely nailed.

Cigar City Jai Alai

Imagine my face when I saw a name of a beer written in euskera, which is the original language of my people! I had to try it immediately even if it was awful. As a pleasant surprise, it was not only not-awful, but quite good indeed. This beer is more of an Indian Pale Ale and hence is a little stronger, more complex in the flavor. Also a little heavier to your body, it is not for drinking at lunch and then walking 10 miles sightseeing. For a change, the malt flavors almost melt in your tongue and you´re left with a nice bitteresque sensation in your throat.

Founder´s Brewing Kentucky Breakfast Stout

Going down the line of heavier-flavored beer, this stout is as good as the category gets. It is not a beer for everybody; it takes some time to get to enjoy the hidden tastes in a barrel-aged beer. It is a delight of a beer, especially when you are aiming for that wooden final taste to last behind your back teeth. It is not as heavy as I expected, but is one of the best-smelling and rounder-tasting beers I´ve had. If you´re into stouts, you will love this one.

Brew Dog Punk IPA

Well, I don´t really like fruity beers all that much, but I really have to make an exception with this one. It has a big body for being an India Pale Ale and also some bitterness, specially at the end of your sip. Before that flavor catches your tongue, you get a splash of grapefruit, lychee and pineapple that are festive, moderate and well-tailored. This beer jumps all your prejudice like an Olympic athlete running for gold and leaves your mouth ready for the next. It is the perfect beer to drink in the middle of the night to cleanse your senses and move on.

Stone Brewing Stone Ripper

Have I stated above that I don´t really enjoy fruity beer? Well, this is another exception. I guess breweries in the USA have a better notion of when to stop than we do back in Spain. Fruity beers this side of the world are more moderate and with this one, you feel the Aussie hop even before the fruity aspect. It is fresh and juicy but also with a strong character. I loved the fact that it also came in a can I could have in my backpack.

Stone Brewing Ruination Double IPA 2.0

Some nights your palate asks for some stronger flavors. This double IPA is exactly that, a stronger version of a great-tasting IPA. With alcohol reaching to about 8.5%, it is not a beer to drink all day, but with a slight citrusy flavor behind the bitterness, it can be the best start for a beer-drinking night. I loved the way the strong flavor mixes perfectly with the aroma and the weight. It is not heavy; it is intense and powerful, drink consciously!

Anchor Porter

I couldn´t do a top-ten list and not include a Porter in it! This was my absolute favorite because of its chocolate and caramel roasted flavor. It is a creamy, thick beer that is a bomb for the senses. It is very dark when poured to the glass, this was intimidating to me the first time, but everything changed in the first sip. There is no bitterness, just strong-flavored, smooth porter at its best.

New Belgium Fat Tire

Amber Ale beer has a divided fan base. There are people who love it and people who hate it in the same percentage. To me, it depends largely on the balance that the brewers can achieve of bitterness and lightness. It has to be light if it is an Ale, but also a little stronger in spirit than the traditional Pale Ale. This beer has it all and is ideal for any moment of the day.

Allagash White

I´m particularly fond of wheat beers. There´s a fine line between malt and wheat that if it is crossed, they are acid. The Allagash White is completely the opposite. Based on the original Belgian recipe I have tried countless times (Spain is close to Belgium), this perfect blend of materials is festive to the mouth. A great beer to have lunch with.

Honey Brown Original Lager

Finally, honey beers are not at all what I´m used to drinking, but they make a great ending for any long night. This is a light incarnation with only 4.5% of alcohol and the honey taste perfectly blended with some malt-flavored notes that stick in your palate. It is golden amber and not at all a watered-down version of a different beer, but a great taste on its own.