The good people at Livability.com can start a project, but they’re not so much for finishing it. Witness their list of 99 beers in 99 cities. They couldn’t do a hundred? They couldn’t just act like Bumble Falls, Wyoming is pretty cool? They had so little appreciation for Honeycomb Nacho Lager that they said “screw it, the list is 99”?
The concept is…just read the list and think about beer. It’s kind of a list of good cities, but not necessarily the cities with the best brewpubs. It’s not exactly a list of the 99 best beers in America. It’s a list of cities that are good that have good beer in them too.
So if you want good beer and want what’s around you while you drink it to also be pleasant, take a look at Livability’s list.
Whatever exactly this list is measuring, Waterbury, VT is tops in it.
New Glarus, WI
Waterbury has skiing, kayaking, and IPA. Freeport has the flagship L.L. Bean store, which is tolerable after a dozen Red Wheelbarrows from Maine Beer Co. Cooperstown has the baseball Hall of Fame and a beer that inspired livability to use the word “Burgundian.” Ardmore holds its own with Tired Hands Brewing Co., and New Glarus is called “Little Switzerland” and pours a tall glass of Raspberry Tart.
Also on the list are imagination-stirring brews like Mac & Jack’s Amber, Space Cake, and Red Rocket Ale. A read of this list will convince you that if Norman Rockwell were alive today, he’d crank out paintings of bearded hipsters sitting in front of enormous steel tanks and shoveling hops against a backdrop of the neighboring red brick firehouse.