Beer and Pavement

Top 5 Go-To Breweries

Posted in Beer, Top 5 by SM on November 21, 2011

The Beer and Whiskey Bros. provide me with a lot of ideas for beer posts here. This week’s top-5 was inspired by a post on go-to and no-go breweries. I will abstain from calling out the no-go breweries and just give you my top-5 go-to breweries, breweries that I’ll buy whenever I see their product on the shelf, in the cooler, or on tap.

5. Schlafly/Boulevard – These are the two big breweries in Missouri, Aside from that one brewery. Bothe breweries provide us with entry good beers from which to choose. Of special note are Schlafly’s bourbon barrel beers and Boulevard’s Smokestack series. Both breweries also offer nice (A)IPA’s as well as some seasonal favorites.

4. Founders – I’m not sure any brewery gets the intense flavor of every style of beer better than Founders. Their IPA’s are straight bitter with a citrus nose. The stouts and porters are blacker than night and easily some of the best in the business. The only thing I’ve found that Founders doesn’t do well is subtlety. And is that so bad?

3. Jolly Pumpkin – I pretty much always have a JP in the cellar. Whenever they put out a new brew, I am sure to grab one, despite their somewhat steep prices. A Jolly Pumpkin beer tastes like no other as they employ a wild fermentation with all their beers. Even their ESB’s and stouts are funky. We don’t get a ton of JP here, but whenever I can, I grab one.

2. Stone – This was the brewery (specifically Ruination IPA) that turned me on to craft beer. I consider them the Founders of the west (or vice versa), but they can do subtlety. At least when I pick up a Stone beer, I know every time that it will be enjoyable. This was a major get for our market this last year. Now, we have some of the best IPA’s, stouts, and barley wines available for very little money.

1. Mikkeller – Like Jolly Pumpkin, I pay an extra premium for these beers. The trouble is that we only get a few of their brews at a time. Then, one has to decide if $12 for 12 oz. is worth it. Often, the answer is yes. And they do every style imaginable, plus a few they made up. Even if I don’t like a Mikkeller beer, I will at least find it interesting.

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5 Responses

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  1. Lyrics, Libations, and Life said, on November 21, 2011 at 9:50 am

    I’m sad to say I really haven’t had to many Mikkeller. I see their bottles around my area, but I have never actually picked any of their stuff up. I guess I’ll have to get on that.

    • Zac said, on November 21, 2011 at 9:54 am

      They’re a risky buy, expensive and always something that surprises. I think I like the adventure they provide. Often, my faith is rewarded. Never have I been bored or let down my Mikkeller.

  2. Holly said, on November 21, 2011 at 11:27 am

    Can’t disagree with your choices much other than the fact that I’m not as into the funky / sours as you are, so I might axe Jolly Pumpkin in favor of… well, it would probably be Dogfish Head if we could get that here, so I’m not sure what I’d insert there.

    Maybe Firestone Walker but almost exclusively for their Double Jack. I love that beer like no other DIPA and would drink it every day. I haven’t yet tasted Parabola and Abacus, though, and I am meh about the Reserve Porter that is the other choice we regularly get here.

    • Zac said, on November 21, 2011 at 12:07 pm

      Oh, DfH would make the list, if it were available here. Whenever I travel somewhere that has DfH, I buy at least a bottle of something.

  3. […] Mikkeller is my number one go-to brewery. […]


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