Brewer: Sierra Nevada Brewing
Style: American IPA
If you're looking for a beer that will taste great while sitting by a Christmas tree, it's hard to go wrong with the pine forest hop bouquet offered by a Sierra Nevada's Celebration. First released in 1981, Celebration was one of the earliest examples of the style to be brewed by an American craft brewery.
While most breweries use pelletized hops that have been crushed in a hammer mill, Sierra Nevada uses only whole-flower hops across their entire lineup of beers. They insist that the whole flowers result in greater aroma than pellets. While other brewers might scoff at the practice, you'd be hard-pressed to find many that look down their noses at Celebration, which uses only the freshest dried hops from that year's harvest. The result is a pungently hoppy IPA that helped spark a revolution in IPAs.