The 11 Best Canned Beers in the Country
The first beer can -- a heavy-gauge steel number that had to be stabbed open with a sharp piece of metal -- first hit the market almost 80 years ago. I envy the beer bloggers of those days. With just two beers available (Krueger's Cream Ale and Krueger's Finest Beer), ranking the best canned beers in the country would've been pretty easy. How far we've come: craftcans.com, an online database of canned craft beer, has catalogued nearly 1,500 brews packaged in aluminum. Choosing the best among them is no longer such a simple task.
Not that we'll stop trying. Some of the best canned beers in the country were announced as winners in the AmeriCAN Canned Craft Beer Festival's medal competition Saturday (you can view a video of the medal ceremony here, if you're so inclined). But many more fantastic aluminum-housed ales and lagers weren't even sent to be judged. Here, we rank 11 beers you won't find at this Saturday's festival -- the best canned beers in the U.S.
Brewery Vivant - Tart Side of the Moon
Belgian Strong Ale
9.8 percent ABV
Available in: Grand Rapids, Michigan
Fermented with a blend of two Belgian yeast strains, and aged three months, Tart Side of the Moon blends funky tartness with darker flavors of chocolate, black cherries and coffee beans. Plus if you drink it while watching The Wizard of Oz, the flavors totally match up, man.
Cigar City Brewing - Tocobaga
7.2 percent ABV
Available in: Tampa, Florida
The Tocobaga were Florida natives who lived in Tampa Bay hundreds of years before the Spanish arrived in the 1500's. They live on in this incredible red that balances piney hops and woody notes with a punch of caramel and toasted bread rolls.
DC Brau Brewing Co. - On the Wings of Armageddon
9.2 percent ABV
Available in: Washington, D.C.
First brewed to commemorate/drink away the horrors of the Mayan apocalypse that was supposed to happen in 2012, On the Wings of Armageddon gets it intense hop character from Falconer's Flight, a blend of some of the Northwest's most popular hop varieties. The result is a tongue-bruiser with notes of juicy grapefruit, papaya a fresh-cut grass.