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Best Destinations for Beer in the World

Fanatically innovative brewers around the globe are creating new beers with unorthodox ingredients and techniques. Here are the top brewtopias around the world.
San Diego's Beer Scene

Plus:

Exploring San Diego’s Beer Scene

Destinations: Belgium | California | Colorado | Japan | Italy | Norway

Cantillon

Courtesy of Brasserie Cantillon

Belgium

Cantillon, Brussels

(Photo, left) The ultimate mecca for beer geeks. Brewer Jean-Pierre Van Roy experiments with wild yeasts and wine-beer hybrids.

Fantôme, Soy

Brewmaster Dany Prignon uses unorthodox ingredients like dandelion, mustard seeds, Grains of Paradise, coriander and even mushrooms.

Stone Brewing

© Gregory Hayes

California

Port Brewing Co., San Marcos

Utilizes funky yeast strains.

Stone Brewing Co., Escondido

(Photo, left) Known for high-alcohol “extreme” beers.

Ballast Point, San Diego

Works with radical barrel-aging techniques.

Alpine Beer Co., Alpine

Small-production beers made with rare hops.

New Beligum

Courtesy of New Belgium

Colorado

Oskar Blues, Lyons

First in the U.S. to sell craft beer in cans.

New Belgium, Fort Collins

(Photo, left) Reimagines Belgian traditions.

Kiuchi Brewery

Courtesy of Sadamu Saito

Japan

Yo-Ho Brewing Co., Karuizawa

Riffs on U.S. and British beer styles include an American-style golden pale ale called Yona Yona Ale.

Kiuchi Brewery, Ibaraki

(Photo, left) Makes its Hitachino Nest Red Rice Ale with red rice; ages its hard-to-find XH in oak barrels used for sake and shochu.

Italy

Le Baladin, Piozzo

Piedmont’s rock-star brewer Teo Musso uses odd ingredients in beers like spicy Nora (made from ginger and myrhh). He hosts beer dinners at his hotel-restaurant, Casa Baladin.

Birrificio Italiano, Lurago Marinone

This cutting-edge brewery located just north of Milan makes excellent pale lagers and interesting fruit-flavored ales like Scires, which is brewed with black cherries.

Norway

Nogne O, Grimstad

This Norse brewery produces high-malt, intensely hopped beers like the roasty, dark Imperial Stout. Its Dark Horizon is a small-batch, wacky hybrid stout made with English malt, Pacific Rim hops, Canadian yeast and Colombian coffee.

Published June 2009
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