The following post is a collaboration between DCBeer.com Staff Writers Jake Berg and Nick Rakowski, and co-editor Bill DeBaun.
SAVOR may be in New York City this year, but we at DCBeer.com are dedicated to showing you the best of the best. Here are, in our humble opinions, twenty five beers that should not be missed.
Allagash FV13, American Wild Ale – A sour aged in giant oak foudres? You know what they say about big foudres… nothing. But still, this beer is top notch.
Avery Odo Equum, American Wild Ale – Avery's sours are some of the best in the country and are rarely available outside of CO. Seize the moment.
Ballast Point Habanero Sculpin, American IPA – One of the country's best IPAs, but with a kick.
Bell's Black Note, Imperial Stout – One of the most sought-after stouts in the country. Barrel aging countributes a lot of sweetness, so it's perfect for a taster, or two, or three.
Bell's Raspberry Wild One, American Wild Ale – After Bell's ran out of their regular offerings at last year's SAVOR, they broke out a few bottles of this last year, if memory serves. Great, pure fruit flavor.
Boulevard Saison-Brett – No one does a brett saison like Boulevard. No one.
Bruery Bois, Old Ale – This beer is going to be something like $30+ on shelves for a 750mL bottle, so get your money's worth. It's also 15.5% ABV, so get your ABVs worth.
Cigar City Cucumber Saison – If you haven't tried this, give it a shot. It's weird, and almost pickle-like with an intense, refreshing yeastiness. Not for everyone.
Choc Brewing Signature Gose – The original reinterpretation of the style, Choc was doing this before it became a micro-trend.
Crooked Stave HopSavant, American Pale Ale – We've been hearing some of our most trusted beer nerds rave about Crooked Stave for a while now. Time to give them a try.
Crooked Stave Surette, Saison – Well, maybe these guys do a brette saison like Boulevard, too.
Devil's Backbone Vienna Lager – They take the time to do it right. Update: they aren't bringing this beer, which is a shame, but Striped Bass Pale Ale is an excellent example of the style.
Evolution Spring Migration 2013, American Strong Ale – Evolution's limited releases have been consistently delicious. This one's aged in rum barrels. Stop by and tell them to put some of Lot 6, their double IPA, in those barrels while you're at it.
Firestone Walker Parabola, Imperial Stout – Another marquee imperial stout (with a savory pairing!) that is not to be missed.
Firestone Walker Pivo Pilsner – Should have the bitterness and light bite to clear the heft of parabola from your palate. Also, pilsners! They're tasty!
Full Sail LTD Bohemian Pilsner – Not one, but two breweries (see above) are bringing Czech-style pilsners. Fans of American IPAs may be pleased with the hop bite these two bring. Appreciate pivo.
Hops & Grain Brewing ALTeration, Altbier – A bourbon-barrel aged alt? 'Murica!
Lost Abbey Deliverance, American Strong Ale – Get your bourbon on… if it's carbonated correctly. Zing!
Oakshire Frederic C Noir, Saison – One of our favorites of SAVOR2012 and CBC, Oakshire is back with a saison offering and we will be there drinking it all.
Schlafly Kolsch – If you haven't tried this beer yet and it's available in your area, we will put you in the cone of shame. And you will not like the cone of shame. Drink it early in the night while your palate appreciates it.
Starr Hill Monticello Reserve Ale, Wheat Beer – A little bit of history in a glass, brewed using Thomas Jefferson's recipe.
Three Floyds Zombie Dust, American Pale Ale – "It's in your head, it's in your heaaaad, citra, citra, citra-a-a-a!" When fresh, no beer brings the hops in quite the same was as Zombie Dust.
Three Floyds Tiberian Inquisitor, Belgian-style Pale Ale – Aged in Chardonnay barrels, this one could be a keeper from a brewery that knows what they're doing. (Replaces Devils Backbone Vienna Lager.)
Yazoo Brett Saison – The third brett saison we've mentioned. We like them.
Yazoo Embrace the Funk Wild Child, American Wild Ale – This is a collaboration with a beer blogger, which is every beer blogger's dream.
Upland Dantalion, American Wild Ale – Upland has really found its footing in the wild ale arena and their beers are hard to come by outside of their immediate area. Gilgamesh was terrific last year and we expect Dantalion will be the same.
Stats: 4 American Wild Ales, 4 saisons (3 of them brett saisons), 3 strong/old ales, 2 pilsners, 2 American pale ales, 2 imperial stouts.
With one hundred and forty four beers (144!) poured at SAVOR, we know we left out some good ones. Let us know which ones in the comments. A complete list of SAVOR beers is here.
This post is a component of DCBeer.com's limited SAVOR2013 series. Check back for more information soon.