Online beer mecca RateBeer has just announced their Best of 2012 Awards, and a Belgian Quadrupel takes the blue ribbon.
Westvleteren 12, a product of Westvleteren Abdij St. Sixtus, topped the list of 50 best beers. The beer, a RateBeer Gold Medal winner, comes from a brewery that has "the smallest output of the Trappist breweries," and is less available than a more popular Belgian Quadrupel like Rochefort 10.
Here's the top 10, which were determined by over 3.5 million reviews. RateBeer says that they placed more emphasis on user reviews coming from tastings that occurred in the last year.
- Westvleteren 12 - Westvleteren Abdij St. Sixtus
- Närke Kaggen Stormaktsporter - Närke Kulturbryggeri
- Goose Island Rare Bourbon County Stout - Goose Island Beer Company
- Founders Kentucky Breakfast Stout - Founders Brewing Company
- Rochefort Trappistes 10 - Brasserie Rochefort
- Bells Hopslam - Bells Brewery
- Russian River Pliny the Younger - Russian River Brewing
- Cigar City Pilot Series Passionfruit and Dragonfruit Berliner Weisse - Cigar City Brewing
- AleSmith Speedway Stout - AleSmith Brewing Company
- Deschutes The Abyss - Deschutes Brewery
Personal favorite brewery Three Floyd's had two beers in the top twenty - Dark Lord russian Imperial Stout at number 13 and their ass-kicking Dreadnaught Imperial IPA at number 17. Another personal favorite, Southern Tier's Choklat came in at number 40.
Craft beer is on the rise, says RateBeer in a post:
Craft beer is at a wonderful stage. No longer are we competing for respect as a second class beverage. We've won respect. And the craft beer industry is enjoying great success. The number of craft brewers is still increasing markedly. Last year alone RateBeer new brewers increased a whopping 16%. And RateBeer is still growing rapidly, primarily in large US metro areas like San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago and New York and abroad in Australia, Sweden, Italy and Brazil.
RateBeer also awarded prizes in specific categories. Munster, Indiana's Three Floyds topped the list of best breweries in the World 2012. The best new brewers category was won by anchorage, Alaska's anchorage Brewing Company.