No need for much ceremony, I’d guess I drank somewhere around 700 different beers in 2012, and here are the best of the best.
1. Hill Farmstead Society & Solitude #3
I love Heady Topper–my #1 in 2011–but this is the best Vermont IPA I’ve ever had. Maybe even THE best IPA I’ve ever had.
2. Goose Island King Henry
A boozy barleywine aged in a Pappy Van Winkle 23 barrel? What could possibly go wrong? Only the fact I’ll never taste it again.
3. Evil Twin Imperial Biscotti Break
In the running for best coffee beer I’ve ever had. Straight dessert.
4. Drie Fonteinen Schaerbeekse Kriek
The utter heights of Belgium fruit lambic, its cherry tartness making others tastes like a syrupy Lindemans.
5. Cascade Sang Noir
An epic American sour ale, so fucking tart and wine-y, even more complex.
6. Stone Ruination Tenth Anniversary IPA
Sixteen years since they started, Stone had one of their best years ever, and this was one of their best beers ever.
7. Avery Uncle Jacob’s Stout
Makes my beloved Bourbon County Stout seem a little thin. Boozy and thick as a milkshake.
8. Allagash Coolship Resurgam
Brilliant American representation of a pure, unfettered, sourass gueze.
9. Thornbridge Kipling IPA (cask)
This UK-version of an American IPA is so dank and delicious, I nearly emptied this cask by myself.
10. Firestone Walker Wookey Jack
The best Black IPA EVER made. Must be the rye.
Avery Meph Addict
The Bruery Fruet
Captain Lawrence Hops N’ Roses
Cigar City Dos Costas Oeste – Grapefruit Wood Aged
COOP Territorial Reserve Oak Aged Barleywine Ale
Deschutes Collage Conflux #1
Uerige Doppelsticke (2008 vintage)
Evil Twin Without You I’m Nothing
Goose Island Bramble Rye Bourbon Brand County Stout
Mystic Cabernet Sauvignon Barrel Fermented Saison
Stone Fifteenth Anniversary Escondidian Imperial Black IPA aged in Lowland Scotch Barrels
XBeeriment Black Force One