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Friday, June 21, 2013


E-bulletin board by award-winning Russian River Brewing Company, Santa Rosa, CA

HOPPING SUCCESS – If you're heading over to the Bottlecraft Beer Store (30th and University) to add to your craft beer stash be sure to ask the staff of the biggest selection of retail craft beer in town for anything by Russian River Brewery. 

If they don't, here's a reason Russian River brews sell out quickly.  

More than 37,000 organized brew gurus can’t be wrong when it comes to picking the best commercial beer for 2013.  Case in point, members of the American Homebrewers Association’s (AHA) like their beers bitter and once again voted Russian River Brewing Company’s Pliny the Elder the “Best Commercial Beer in America” for the fifth year running. The poll is conducted annually by Zymurgy magazine, a publication of the AHA.

Maybe it’s time to retire Pliny to the Hall of Fame and let the rest of the world have some love.

This is the 11th year that AHA members voted for up to 20 of their favorite beers in an online poll. Members were able to choose any commercial beer available for purchase in the United States. As in recent years, flavorful IPAs and double IPAs continue to outshine the rest, and comprised eight of the top 10 beers.

The top-ranked beers include:

1. Russian River Pliny the Elder
2. Bell’s Two Hearted Ale
3. Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA
4. Bell’s Hopslam Ale
5. Ballast Point Sculpin IPA (SAN DIEGO)
6. Founders Breakfast Stout    
7. Stone Brewing Co. Arrogant Bastard Ale  (ESCONDIDO)      
8. Sierra Nevada Ruthless Rye IPA       
T9. Lagunitas Sucks    
T9. Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale        
T9. Stone Brewing Co. Ruination IPA
(T indicates tie)

More than 1,100 breweries were represented in this year’s poll, and the top-ranked brewery is Stone Brewing Co. (Escondido, Calif.), who had five beers in the top 50. Russian River Brewing Company (Santa Rosa, Calif.) took second with five beers as well, followed by the Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. (Chico, Calif.), in third with four beers making the list.  San Diego's Ballast Point Brewing made the top ten list.

“The homebrewers that make up the membership of the AHA are amongst the most discerning craft beer drinkers in the country,” said Gary Glass, director of the AHA. “For a brewery to be recognized as making the best beer in American by this group is a high honor indeed.”

Additionally, the Best Portfolio of Beers was awarded to the Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams), which had 40 beers receive votes in the poll. The top contenders in the category include:

 1. The Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) 
2. Dogfish Head Craft Brewery 
3. Avery Brewing Co.   
4. Cigar City Brewing   
5. Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.   

As was the case in 2012, no beers produced by breweries outside of the U.S. made the top 50. The two top vote-getters among foreign breweries both hailed from Belgium—Orval and Saison Dupont tied for first place.

The complete list of Zymurgy’s "Best Beers in America" is available at

Learn more about Zymurgy magazine.

About the American Homebrewers Association:
The American Homebrewers Association has worked on behalf of the homebrewing community since 1978 and celebrates a membership of more than 37,000 homebrewers. The American Homebrewers Association (AHA) organizes events including the National Homebrewers Conference and National Homebrew Competition. The AHA also publishes Zymurgy magazine. The AHA is part of the Brewers Association, whose Brewers Publications division is the largest publisher of contemporary and relevant brewing literature for today’s craft brewers and homebrewers.

Beer lovers and anyone interested in making their own homemade beer are invited to learn more at Follow the AHA on Twitter, and join us on Facebook.

The Brewers Association is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, or marital/familial status. The BA complies with provisions of Executive Order 11246 and the rules, regulations, and relevant orders of the Secretary of Labor.

News sources: American Homebrewers Assn.

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