Where can you find the best craft beer?
Earlier this month the Brewers Association held the World Beer Cup 2012 - 'The Olympics of Beer Competition'. 799 breweries from 54 countries and 45 U.S. states entered 3,921 beers in 95 beer style categories.
U.S. breweries won 212 of the 284 total awards, with California (55 awards) winning the most, and Colorado (27 awards) winning more than the next highest country (Germany with 23 awards).
So where can you find the best craft beer? On our map!
We have mapped the winning small & medium sized breweries that you can visit, tour or drink at. Zoom in to where you are, or where you're going, and click the map pins to see the brewery name and their awards. The map pins are even color coded. Read more after the map...
In the U.S., the Brewers Association says there were 250 new breweries that opened in 2011, and though overall beer sales by volume were down, craft brewery volume was up by 13%. Clearly more and more people are enjoying the unique beers being crafted by these mainly local breweries.
You don't have to be a beer expert to enjoy craft beer, but you may want to brush up on some definitions:
- Microbrewery - A brewery that produces less than 15,000 barrels (17,600 hectoliters) of beer per year with 75% or more of its beer sold off-site.
- Brewpub - A restaurant-brewery that sells 25% or more of its beer on site. The beer is brewed primarily for sale in the restaurant and bar.
- CraftBeer.com -published by the Brewers Association, they have an extensive database of breweries and beer-related information
- TapHunter - They don't cover every market, but they specialize in connecting craft beer fanatics with the beers they love, the brewers who brew them and the locations that pour them. They have a website plus iPhone and Android apps
- BeerAdvocate - a global, grassroots network, powered by an independent community of beer enthusiasts and industry professionals who are dedicated to supporting and promoting beer
- RateBeer - an independent world site for craft beer enthusiasts that is dedicated to serving the entire craft beer community through beer education, promotion and outreach.