Iowa lands in bottom half of craft beer ranking
Light or dark, hoppy or malty? At least local beer fans can agree on one thing: Iowa has some damn good beer.
Home to more than 70 breweries from Missouri to Mississippi rivers, Iowa ranks 14th nationally in number of breweries per capita and 22nd in overall breweries, according to 2016 data from Brewers Association.
There’s a weeklong summer festival in Des Moines dedicating to celebrate Iowa beer and an entire beer hall in the East Village that boasts more than 100 Iowa beers on tap each day. Our state even has a craft beer tent that guarantees the Iowa State Fair and RAGBRAI have plenty of local brews.
And if that’s not enough to fill your glass: Iowa has scored 11 medals from the Great American Beer Festival since 2011.
Still, that wasn’t enough to land the state in the top half of Thrillist’s “All 50 states, ranked by their beer” list, which published last week. The list parked Iowa at 30th, just ahead of Louisiana and behind Tennessee. Defining list methodology as a mixture of quality and quantity — with quality being “a bit more important” — here’s the reason for rank:
“While the collective Iowa beer scene has come a long way in recent years, the discussion of Iowa beer still kind of begins and ends with Toppling Goliath, whose proven deftness with both obsessed-over, cellar-worthy stouts as well as game-changing IPAs has improbably made the humble town of Decorah a bucket list destination for beer geeks.”
It continues: “That said, breweries like Exile and Backpocket are giving visitors a few more brews to consider stocking up on when they make their pilgrimage.”
Someone get Thrillist a case of CocO Stout — posthaste!
Topping the list is Oregon, with Colorado, California, Michigan and Massachusetts rounding out the top five. It’s not a total wash, though, Iowans. At least we’re better than 33rd place New Jersey and, most importantly, 38th place Nebraska.