Posted August 6, 2013 by Crafted Pours in Blog Posts

Crafted Pours Top 25 Artisan & Innovative Craft Breweries in America for 2013

russian imperial stout
russian imperial stout
Key factors in selecting the Top 25 Artisan & Innovative Craft Brewers in America for 2013:

- High quality year-round beer offerings

- Exceptional beers produced with unique brewing ingredients and methods

- Interesting and flavorful limited release beers

- Variety and depth of beer styles offered

- Demand and buzz surrounding beer releases and events 


1. The Bruery (Placentia, CA)

Masters of barrel-aging and sour ale production. Exceptional special releases like BottleWorks XII, a Barrel-Aged Imperial Raspberry Wit and Or Xata, a Mexican Horchata flavored ale.

Brewer of Black Tuesday, one of the most highly sought after Imperial Stouts.

Produce interesting and flavorful styles like; Berliner Weisse, Spiced Saisons, Blended Sour Ales, Smoked Rye Beer, and a Sour Stout. 

2. Founders Brewing (Grand Rapids, MI)

Fantastic line up of regular beers including, Breakfast Stout, a double chocolate coffee oatmeal stout, and Red’s Rye PA, a Rye IPA, and Devil Dancer Triple IPA, an incredibly smooth Imperial IPA with 112 IBUs.

Interesting and unique special release such as Mango Magnifico, a strong ale brewed with mango and habanero, and Harvest Ale, a Wet-Hopped IPA brewed with freshly harvested hops right of the vines.

Brewer of one of the most sought after craft beers on the market, Kentucky Breakfast Stout, a Bourbon Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout, brewed with coffee and chocolate. 

3. Cigar City Brewing (Tampa, FL)

Insatiable local demand for their beers. Brewer of Hunahpu’s Imperial Stout, one of the top Imperial Stouts in the world.

Top notch year round beers, including Tocobaga Red Ale and Jose Marti American Porter.

Interesting special releases including a Cucumber Saison, and a Guava Berliner Weisse

4. Firestone Walker (Paso Robles, CA)

Fantastic year-round offerings, including DBA, a British Style Ale fermented in oak barrels,  Union Jack IPA, and Wookey Jack, a Black Rye IPA.

Parabola Imperial Stout, an annual beer release, is a world-class beer.

5.  Surly Brewing (Brooklyn Center, MN)

Top notch classic styles, including Hell, a German Style Munich Helles, and Abrasive Ale, an over-the-top Double IPA.

Flavorful and interesting seasonal releases such as Smoke, an oak-aged Baltic Porter, and Wet, a Wet-Hopped IPA brewed with freshly harvested Citra and Simcoe hops.

Huge cult following for their brilliant Russian Imperial Stout, The Darkness.

6. Three Floyds (Munster, IN)

Brewer of Zombie Dust and Alpha King, two of the most popular American Pale Ales in the country.

Massive cult following for their fantastic Imperial Stout, Dark Lord

7. Hill Farmstead Brewery (Greensboro, VT)

Brewer of highly regarded Abner and Ephraim Double IPAs.

Innovative barrel-aged beer releases, such as Fear & Trembling, a bourbon barrel-aged maple smoked baltic porter, and Genealogy of Morals, a madeira barrel-aged rye coffee Imperial Stout. 

8. Block 15 Brewery (Corvallis, OR)

Running one of the most innovative barrel-aged beer programs in the country, with releases including; Louis le Whopper, a Cognac barrel-aged barleywine, Enchanment, a barrel-aged oud bruin sour brown ale aged for up to 33 months, and Figgy Pudding, an English style strong ale aged in brandy barrels.

9. The Lost Abbey (San Marcos, CA)

Top notch brewer of Belgian style ales, including Red Barn Ale, a spiced Saison, Lost and Found Abbey Ale, a Belgian Style Dubbel, and Red Poppy Ale, a barrel-aged Flanders style sour red ale.

Brewer of the world class Duck Duck Gooze blended barrel-aged sour ale.

10. Cascade Brewing (Portland, OR)

Masters of barrel-aging and sour ale production.

Innovative and artfully crafted beer releases including; Sang Rouge, a barrel-aged sour red ale aged up to 30 months, Tangerine Dream NW, a rum barrel-aged sour old ale flavored with apricot and tangerine zest, and Figaro, a barrel-aged sour blonde ale flavored with figs and lemon peel.

11. Crooked Stave (Denver, CO)

Artisan brewery highly skilled at producing barrel-aged beers with wild Brettanomyces yeast. Favorite beers include St, Bretta Witbier, an oak-aged Wit brewed with Minneola tangerines and fermented with 100% Brett yeast, and Persica, a barrel-aged sour peach ale.

12. Hardywood Park Craft Brewery (Richmond, VA)

Craft brewery producing flavorful and innovative beers. Favorites include Hardywood Hoplar, an Imperial IPA aged on toasted Poplar wood, and Virginia Blackberry, a strong Belgian style Wit brewed with freshly harvested blackberries.

13. Jack’s Abby Brewing (Framingham, MA)

Artisan craft brewery producing exceptional lager beers. Favorites include Kiwi Rising, a Double India Pale Lager brewed with New Zealand hops, and Smoke & Dagger, a smoked German style Schwarzbier.

14. Night Shift Brewing (Everett, MA)

Innovative craft brewery producing exceptional ales. Favorites include Somer Weisse, a Berliner Weisse brewed with lemongrass and ginger, and Fallen Apple, a rum barrel-aged golden ale flavored with apple cider and spices.

15. Jackie O’s Pub & Brewery (Athens, OH)

Small craft brewer producing some excellent beer. Favorites include Kentucky Monk, a bourbon barrel-aged Belgian style Tripel, and Cellar Cuvee 7, a barrel-aged sour brown ale.

16. Westbrook Brewing (Mount Pleasant, SC)

Craft brewery producing innovative and flavorful beers. Favorites include Mexican Cake, a spiced Imperial Stout, and 100% Brett Lichtenhainer, a sour German wheat beer brewed with smoked malt.

17. Logsdon Farmhouse Ales (Hood River, OR)

Artisan craft brewery producing exceptional farmhouse style ales. Favorites include Peche N Brett, a barrel-aged peach farmhouse ale, and Cerasus, a barrel-aged sour cherry ale.

18. Brewery Vivant (Grand Rapids, MI)

Innovative craft brewer producing exceptional Belgian style ales. Favorites include Trebuchet, a Belgian Double IPA, and Zaison, a strong Farmhouse Saison spiced with black pepper and orange peel. 

19. Hoppin Frog Beers (Akron, OH)

Craft brewery producing innovative and flavorful ales. Favorites include BORIS The Crusher, an Imperial Oatmeal Stout, and Mean Manalishi, an intensely bitter Double IPA.

20. Upland Brewing (Bloomington, IN)

Craft brewery producing exceptional wild fermented ales. Favorites include Blackberry Lambic, sour fruit beer fermented with wild yeast, and Sour Reserve, a blended barrel-aged sour ale.

21. Trinity Brewing (Colorado Springs, CO)

Small craft brewery producing innovative and fun to drink beers. Favorites include Red Swingline, an intensely hopped barrel-aged sour ale, and Ten Minutes of Pleasure, a Berliner Weisse aged in oak Chardonnay barrels.

22. Breakside Brewery (Portland, OR)

Innovative craft brewer producing excellent beer. Favorites include Bourbon Barrel-Aged Sour Imperial Stout, and Aztec Ale, an American Strong Ale flavored with chocolate and chili peppers. 

23. Upright Brewing (Portland, OR)

Craft brewery producing flavorful and innovative ales. Favorites include Fantasia, a barrel-aged peach ale, and Gose, a German style ale brewed with coriander and salt.

24. Jester King Brewery (Austin, TX)

Innovative farmhouse brewery producing excellent ales with wild yeast. Favorites include Funk Metal, a barrel-aged Sour Stout, and Salt Lick -Censored – a Pecan Smoked Saison fermented with wild yeast.

25. Epic Brewing (Salt Lake City, UT)

Craft brewery producing a wide range of exceptional beers. Favorites include Smoked and Oaked, a whiskey barrel-aged Smoked Belgian Strong Ale, and Big Bad Baptist, an Imperial Coffee Chocolate Stout, brewed with cacao nibs and coffee.


Other close contenders were Burnside BrewingAnchorage Brewing, FunkwerksBeachwood Brewing, Cisco Brewers, and Oxbow Brewing.