A tough to beat first 5 on the list. Let’s see what follows it up. By the way, during a blizzard, a great way to pass time is drinking beer. It’s really fun, you should try it.
Iowa breweries are going to play a big part in this list with Toppling Goliath getting one in on the previous 5 and now Madhouse www.madhousebeer.com getting on the list with Hopburst. A great IPA with the perfect balance of hops and malts. Very refreshing and available in bombers and in sixers. Support Iowa beer and get yourself some. From the brewery:
Hopbursting is a relatively new brewing technique in which the vast majority of hops are added to the kettle late in the boil in order to achieve enhanced extraction of hop components (ie, Hopbursting gives you tons of hops flavor and aroma!) Our Hopburst IPA has a substantial malt base, balanced with huge additions of our unique hop blend. This creates an incredibly flavorful beer, with smooth bitterness and hoppy goodness.
Stone has a chance to have a beer on all 5 portions of this list. A great addition to Iowa that continues to push what craft beer can be. Their IPA, Enjoy By, Levitation, Arrogant Bastard, and now this phenomenal, easy drinking black IPA make Stone one of the best breweries in the country. From the website:
We’re brewers whose substantial mettle and idiomatic approach to brewing allows us to consistently create works of art such as this justifiably self righteous ale. Its bitterness hits our sweet spot. Its blackness lightens our hearts. Its liquid dichotomy pulls it all together in this sublimely sacrosanct ale. Yes, we damn well know our stuff here at Stone, and it would be irresponsible of us not to acknowledge how remarkable this heavenly creation of ours is. Thus the name we are compelled to give it … Stone Sublimely Self Righteous Ale … serves as a reminder of just how good we are, in both liquid and verbal form. We re certainly not perfect. Too often, we allow our modesty to get the best of us as we re simply not inclined towards senseless braggadocio. When youre good, youre good. And when you do something great, the least you can do is acknowledge it. Others benefit from knowing. In this case, we find that we are compelled to point out how amazing this beer is that we rightly call the Stone Sublimely Self Righteous Ale. First brewed in 2007 as Stone 11th Anniversary Ale, this beer was an instant hit. With us. Other folks with great taste loved it too, but we were focused on how much we liked it, and we felt it was truly sublime. That euphoria didnt last long though, as it was soon replaced with the grim reality that when we sold out of it there wouldnt be any more. For Us. And that was simply unacceptable. So, we are now blessing ourselves, and you the enlightened, with this beer on a full time basis.. Thusly, you may now revel in your own self righteousness as you see fit with this glorious example of ours. You are genuinely welcome, as it is our pleasure.
For being a 9% beer this so smooth, rich, and easy drinking, and the fact that it comes in a bomber can make it real easy to get a bit wobbly after having a few. New Belgium’s Lips of Faith Series has been very hit and miss with me, but with his beer they hit it out of the park. Anytime I see this on the shelves, I make sure to grab one, perfect for these winter Iowa days. From the brewery:
Serving up cold and jet black, this imperial stout should be taken seriously for about one minute as the dark foam builds. Then, enjoy its velvety chocolate-covered smoothness and delicious aroma of sustainably-grown, locally-roasted coffee.
This beer has been available in Iowa for quite some time now and I feel as though it is starting to get overlooked. Ratebeer score of 100, making it one of the best IPAs out there. A definite staple in my fridge and will continue to be for the foreseeable future.
India Pale Ale style well suited for Hemingway-esque trips to the Upper Peninsula. American malts and enormous hop additions give this beer a crisp finish and incredible floral hop aroma.
Another perfect score on Ratebeer. Relatively new to the Eastern Iowa scene. A Founders beer that is not talked about as much as Double Trouble, Harvest Ale, or others, but if you are looking for a perfect porter, with the perfect roasted malt, caramel taste, then this is the beer for you. From the brewery:
Dark, Rich, and Sexy. Chocolate malts and four varieties of hops make this a very full flavored ale.