Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Top 50 breweries: some interest, some fun

The new list of the top 50 breweries in the U.S. by volume sales is out. Let's have an annotated look, shall we?
  1. Anheuser-Busch InBev; St Louis MO (Shocking...)
  2. MillerCoors; Chicago IL (teamed up, and still 2nd)
  3. Pabst Brewing; Woodridge IL (Hey, dude: get a real brewery!)
  4. D. G. Yuengling and Son; Pottsville PA (Pennsylvania Proud!)
  5. Boston Beer Co.; Boston MA (Pennsylvania Proud, Part II: rocking Breinigsville!)
  6. Sierra Nevada Brewing; Chico CA (Tradition and style)
  7. New Belgium Brewing; Fort Collins CO
  8. North American Breweries; Rochester, NY (Yo, lookie here: buying in)
  9. Craft Brewers Alliance, Inc.; Portland, OR (funny: they say they are, BA says they aren't)
  10. Spoetzl Brewery (Gambrinus); Spoetzl TX (Shine on)
  11. Deschutes Brewery; Bend OR
  12. Independent Brewers United (IBU); Burlington, VT (nice acronym)
  13. F.X. Matt Brewing; Utica NY (Congrats to the survivor)
  14. Minhas Craft Brewery; Monroe WI (Worst. Commemorative. Book. Ever.)
  15. Bell’s Brewery; Galesburg MI
  16. Harpoon Brewery; Boston, MA (my son's new hometown brewery)
  17. Boulevard Brewing; Kansas City MO (gotta get some samples!)
  18. Goose Island Beer; Chicago IL (beer still the same?)
  19. Dogfish Head Craft Brewery; Lewes DE
  20. Alaskan Brewing; Juneau AK
  21. Long Trail Brewing; Burlington VT
  22. August Schell Brewing; New Ulm MN (Another pre-Pro beauty)
  23. Stone Brewing; Escondido CA (What? I thought they were the biggest!)
  24. Abita Brewing; New Orleans LA (40% of sales during Mardi Gras?)
  25. Brooklyn Brewery; Brooklyn NY
  26. Lagunitas Brewing; Petaluma CA
  27. Full Sail Brewing; Hood River OR
  28. Shipyard Brewing; Portland ME (Amazing: I thought no one liked Ringwood...)
  29. Summit Brewing; Saint Paul MN
  30. New Glarus Brewing; New Glarus WI (World-famous in Wisconsin)
  31. Great Lakes Brewing; Cleveland OH
  32. Anchor Brewing; San Francisco CA (Is that up or down from last year?)
  33. Iron City Brewing; Pittsburgh PA (bets on their position next year?)
  34. Kona Brewing; Kailua-Kona HI
  35. Rogue Ales/Oregon Brewing; Newport OR
  36. Firestone Walker Brewing; Paso Robles CA
  37. Winery Exchange Inc. / World Brew; Novato CA (I'm willing to admit my ignorance...)
  38. SweetWater Brewing; Atlanta GA (Wow! Go South!)
  39. Mendocino Brewing; Ukiah CA
  40. Flying Dog Brewery; Frederick MD
  41. Victory Brewing; Downington PA (why can't anyone spell "Downingtown"?)
  42. Gordon Biersch Brewing; San Jose CA
  43. BJs Restaurant & Brewery; Huntington Beach CA
  44. Stevens Point Brewery; Stevens Point WI (Guess no one's out of Point)
  45. Odell Brewing; Fort Collins CO
  46. Bridgeport Brewing (Gambrinus); Portland OR
  47. Cold Spring Brewing; Cold Spring MN
  48. Rock Bottom Brewery Restaurants; Louisville CO
  49. Oskar Blues Brewery; Longmont CO (Can you believe it?)
  50. Straub Brewery; Saint Mary’s PA (Pennsylvania Proud, Part III!)


ncca_tim said...

Great commentary Lew!

Steven said...

Cold Spring? I mean, Cold Spring?!

I honestly didn't know they were still around until I saw a sixer in a store a couple months ago -- but in the top 50 in sales? Are they contracting for Bud?

Gary Gillman said...

Thanks, Lew. Michael would be proud to see Yuengling no. 4, wouldn't he? And the other independent/craft operations in the rest of the top 10. He knew not (but actually he did) what he wrought...


Jack Curtin said...

"Downington" drives me up the wall. And it seems unstoppable.

Winery Exchange Inc. / World Brew creates private label beers for retailers, as well as some of its own. Gonna talk to them next week about that, in fact. At least I hope to.

Anonymous said...

Thought Troegs might crack top 50....who is cold spring?

Steven said...

"....who is cold spring?"

Cold Spring is an old Minnesota regional brewery that was (re)discovered in the early 80s by Charlie Finkel of Merchant DuVin.

He talked them into allowing him to distribute their beer around the country (maybe he even bought into them?) as a rarity, of sorts, in the days before micros had exploded across the scene.

I recall the flagship beer as being a fairly mundane light lager; not anything to really cheer about, but I haven't had any of their beers in many years.
According to this web site they have 2 beers, neither of which are that original Cold Spring that Finkel tried to make famous. How the heck are they in the top 50? It has to all be contract brewing.

Lew Bryson said...

They're contracting; 21st Amendment, for one, and you see the town on other beer labels. Always a good idea to look at the label for Wilkes-Barre, PA (The Lion), Rochester, NY (Genesee), Utica, NY (Matt's), New Ulm, MN (Schell), Monroe, WI (Minhas (formerly Huber)), and...Cold Spring, MN. Nothing wrong with contract beers, but I like to know.

Russ said...

Man, I didn't realize Minhas does THAT MUCH contract brewing... Now if only they would crank out a beer or two of their own that's worthy of the awesome old brewery.

Pete Ruckelshaus said...

Reminds me....I've still got a case of New Glarus left. Sublime!

Chris said...

Guessing Troegs will crack the list once they move into the new digs

sam k said...

Straub brews more beer than the Lion? Really? I find that truly hard to believe.

That, plus the code word for this comment in lionobf. Go figure.

JessKidden said...

@ sam k - I've been asking about The Lion for a few years now every time these B.A. lists come out. Notice City Brewing Co. (which now has no brands of their own) is not listed, either and they claim to be running at near capacity at La Crosse and Latrobe- thus the Memphis purchase. The list apparently doesn't count the production brewed under contract for other brewers. I guess it should be called "50 Largest Beer Marketing Companies".

The Brewers Association apparently claims The Lion's own products are at 15,000 bbl. (!)- if true, that's an incredible drop in 20 or so years when they were doing 100k bbl. not counting contracts.

umpleby said...

They mention that Long Trail is out of Burlington. It is actually Bridgewater Corners.