As the craft beer business and community gains significant hold across the United States, the Brewers Association and CraftBeer.com have released the results of the annual Great American Beer Bars competition, a reader survey created to determine the best tap-laden destinations for craft beer in the country.
CraftBeer.com, the consumer-facing website published by the Brewers Association, recently announced the Great American Beer Bars of 2017, a list of 50 bars representing the results of a public survey in which 7,000 CraftBeer.com readers submitted their picks for the best beer bars in their states.
The number of bars submitted during the survey was not divulged, but with upwards of 5,200 small and independent breweries currently operating in the U.S., we can only assume that many thousands of beer-slinging businesses were submitted.
Many results of the competition will not surprise practiced beer enthusiasts, who have likely paid a visit to the victor of their state; for example, Brooklyn, New York’s Tørst, founded by Jeppe Jarnit-Bjergsø (also founder and brewer of Evil Twin), which opened and quickly earned world-class status in 2013; Portland, Maine’s Novare Res, which opened in 2008, and whose Belgian beer credibility has earned it such rare events as Cantillon Zwanze Day and Dieu Du Ciel Peche Mortel Day; and Charleston, South Carolina’s Edmund’s Oast, opened in 2014, whose 51 taps and can/bottle selection have garnered it a devoted following in the Charleston craft beer community.
Other selections are more surprising, coming from smaller cities in states that have burgeoning beer scenes in their major cities, such as the Bulls Head Public House in Lititz, Pennsylvania, located about 75 miles northwest of Philadelphia’s thriving beer scene, and Brown Iron Brewhouse in Washington Township, Michigan, 170 miles east (clear across the state) from beer-friendly Grand Rapids.
“CraftBeer.com readers understand what sets a beer bar apart and have continually shown up since 2012 to recommend and praise their favorite spots,” said Julia Herz, BA craft beer program director and publisher of CraftBeer.com. “With more than 7,000 votes cast, we are excited to announce this year’s winners and proud to welcome back 21 (41 percent) 2016 winners to the list — a sign that craft beer bars, now more than ever, are committed to their patrons and ensuring the best overall experience.”
Also interesting to note is that the list has changed significantly since last year’s Great American Beer Bars 2016, showing just how rapidly the craft beer business is growing and changing in all 50 states, with many of the touted beer bars having opened within the last few years.
A complete list of the Great American Beer Bars 2017 is available here. To view a state-sortable list with bar descriptions, visit CraftBeer.com. The Brewers Association and CraftBeer.com also encourage craft beer fans to join the conversation about the Great American Beer Bars 2017 on social media using #GABB.