We were lucky enough to drink so many great beers for the first time in 2013, we had to find ways to pare this list down to a reasonable number. For that reason, we decided to omit from consideration any beers that we tasted solely through the generosity of others.
For example, our friend Nick leapt into the world of beer trading this summer, and he was kind enough to allow us to taste such Beer Advocate Top 100 mainstays like Founders Kentucky Breakfast Stout, Three Floyds Zombie Dust, Heady Topper, and Perennial Abraxas. Meanwhile, our beer bar owner friends Clay and Rob gave us the opportunity to sample such legendary beers as Three Floyds Dark Lord (a 2010 vintage that was truly the best beer we had all year), Allagash FV13, and Cascade’s Kriek and Vlad the Imp Aler. Our Michigan native friend Matt brought us Bell’s Two Hearted Ale and Founders Centennial IPA back from a holiday trip home. None of those beers were considered for our list.
For the sake of inclusion, we also left off any new vintages of classic beers we’ve tried before, such as Black Butte XXV, The Abyss 2013, or Dark Horizon 4th Edition. Additionally, we omitted any beers that only one of us was able to try, such as Drake’s Blue Bottle Coffee Imperial Stout, the Danish “Atheist” Imperial Stout Gudelos, Jester King Black Metal, or the Harviestoun Old Dubh 18 Year.
Within those parameters, these are our consensus best beers that we tried for the first time in 2013:
- AK Alive! (Mikkeller/Anchorage)
- Breakfast Stout (Founders)
- Double Eye PA (Mikkeller)
- Farkin Wheaton w00t Stout (Stone)
- Imperial Biscotti Break (Evil Twin)
- Pupil/Apprentice IPA’s (Societe)
- Pure Hoppiness (Alpine)
- Saison-Brett (Boulevard)
- Salty Beard (Solemn Oath)
- Triple Olde Gnarlywine (Lagunitas)
*In Alphabetical Order.
10 More Amazing Beers
- Almanac Beer Company sour beers
- Berserker (Midnight Sun)
- Café Racer 15 (Bear Republic)
- Czar (Avery)
- Dark beers by Clown Shoes – including Vampire Slayer, Very Angry Beast, Blaecorn Unidragon and Porcine Unidragon
- Hop Zombie (Epic)
- Prairie Bomb (Prairie)
- Sans Pagaie (The Bruery)
- Steel Dawn (Columbus)
- SweetWater B.A. IPA (SweetWater)