Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The Father of Homebrewing's "Top Five" Beers

A friend, Charlie, and myself.
With the (sold out) Great American Beer Festival looming in a couple of days I have been unable to contain my anticipation. I decided to go see what Charlie is up to...

Charlie Papazian is the founder of the Brewer's Association (which puts on the epic Great American Beer Festival annually in downtown Denver, a must-see event for anyone into craft beer) and writer of the foremost guide on homebrewing “The Joy of Homebrewing” (which single-handedly taught me how to brew). A highlight of my simple life was getting to meet this man at last year’s GABF.

Being such an iconic figure in brewing, he is often asked to name his favorite beer. While Charlie hesitant to name any specific beer, here are some picks he recently listed for his “Beer Examiner” column:

  1. Best lager beer with a thick juicy barbecued-to-perfection steak - Kings & Vagabonds Czech lager (homebrew). Gordon Biersch Czech-style lager (Brewpub nearest you)

  2. Best ale with hearty stew – Dusty Mud Irish-style stout (homebrew). Mountain Sun Old School Stout (Boulder, Colorado).

  3. Best Belgian Trappist ale by a fireside - Westvletern 12

  4. Best Belgian Trappist (style) with Lasagna - Leftmalle Dubbel-style (homebrew). Westmalle Dubbel

  5. Best beer with Sushi – Lefthand Brewing Co. JuJu Ginger ale (Longmont, Colorado)

Note that (in addtional to legendary Trappist ales such as Westvletern 12), Charlie recommends primarily local brews (he resides in Boulder, CO). Papazian also notes that most Americans live within 10 miles of a brewery, and urges the reader to drink the beer that's made closest to where they reside (be it a brewpub or your own homebrew). Amen Charlie! You can read the full article here.

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