To get a good sense of the NJ beers people are drinking, I could call up each bar and liquor store around and see what their top selling brands are, call the breweries to see which is top grossing, or see what beers are top rated on any of those beer rating websites. A quicker and easier way to achieve this, I believe, is to simply look up Untappd check-ins! The beer rating websites may give you each brewers top-rated beer, but won't give you top selling. Untappd may be a very small sample size compared to the real sales numbers, but I feel it suits this purpose quite well.
First, let's look at breweries (those brewers in the state that send their beer via keg/bottle to liquor stores and bars, and only have a small taproom at the actual brewery). I have listed each NJ brewery and their top 2 most checked in beers on Untappd. Let's see if we can extract some useful information for the chart.
Note: I didn't include any seasonal offerings.
|Brewery||Beer||Style / ABV||Untappd Check-ins|
|Boaks||Monster Mash||Imperial Stout / 10%||513|
|Two Blind Monks||Belgian Dubbel / 7%||439|
|Bolero Snort||Blackhorn||Black Lager / 6.5%||627|
|Ragin' Bull||Amber Lager / 5%||564|
|Cape May||Cape May IPA||American IPA / 6.1%||532|
|Honey Porter||English Porter / 5.2%||401|
|Carton||Boat||Session Ale / 4.2%||5205|
|077XX||Imperial IPA / 7.8%||3052|
|Climax||India Pale Ale||American IPA / 6%||553|
|ESB||ESB / 5.5%||358|
|Cricket Hill||Hopnotic||American IPA / 5.2%||2292|
|East Coast Lager||Helles Lager / 4.2%||1133|
|Flying Fish||HopFish||American IPA / 6.2%||6163|
|Exit 16||Imperial IPA / 8.2%||4413|
|High Point||Ramstein Double Platinum Blonde||Weizenbock / 7%||528|
|Ramstein Blonde Wheat Beer||Hefeweizen / 5.5%||367|
|Kane||Head High||American IPA / 6.5%||3403|
|Overhead||Imperial IPA / 8.2%||1722|
|New Jersey Beer Co.||Hudson Pale Ale||American Pale Ale||498|
|Garden State Stout||American Stout||391|
|River Horse||Tripel Horse||Belgian Tripel / 10%||3562|
|Hop Hazard||American Pale Ale / 6.5%||3231|
|Marshallville Wit||Belgian Pale Ale||140|
|Turtle Stone||Green Snale||Herbed/Spiced / 5.5%||94|
|American Stout||American Stout / 6.5%||87|
Of the 13 breweries listed, 6 have an IPA as their most checked in product. 3 breweries (Kane, Carton and Flying Fish) have the top 2 spots dominated by an IPA and an Imperial/Double IPA. I was quite surprised when I saw River Horse's top checked in beer was their Belgian Tripel, Tripel Horse. I would have guessed either Hop Hazard, Hopalotamus or Special Ale. Out of the 26 top checked in beers, 17 are a distinct style (~65%). That's a lot of variability, and I can't wait to see how that changes as more and more breweries open up (as of this writing, 17 breweries are in planning).
Now let's take a look at New Jersey's brewpubs and their top checked in beers.
Note: I did not include Iron Hill or Triumph, as they have also have brewpubs in Pennsylvania.
|Brewery||Beer||Style / ABV||Untappd Check-ins|
|Artisan's Brewery and Italian Grill||West Coast IPA||American IPA / 6.2%||33|
|Light Ale||American Blonde Ale / 4.2%||27|
|Basil T's||Maxwells Dry Stout||Stout / 5%||97|
|Rosie's Tail Waggin Pale Ale||American Pale Ale / 5.25%||72|
|Gaslight||Perfect Stout||American Stout, 4.8%||42|
|Harvest Moon||Full Moon Pale Ale||American Pale Ale / 5.6%||170|
|Jimmy D's Firehouse Red||Irish Red Ale / 5.5%||140|
|JJ Bittings||WHALES IPA||American IPA / 7%||289|
|Avenel Amber||American Amber / 4.7%||164|
|Krogh's||Alpine Glow Red Ale||American Amber||126|
|Old Krogh Oatmeal Stout||American Stout||90|
|Long Valley||German Valley Amber||American Amber||161|
|Lazy Jake Porter||American Porter||153|
|Ship Inn||Best Bitter||English Bitter||96|
|Trap Rock||Ghost Pony||Helles Lager / 4.6%||164|
|Hathor Red Lager||Marzen / 5.3%||150|
|Tun Tavern||All American IPA||American IPA / 6.8%||240|
|Devil Dog Pale Ale||American Style Pale Ale||182|
|Uno Chicago Grille||Ike's IPA||American IPA||93|
|Uno Amber Ale||American Amber||66|
In the brewpubs, the IPA is still quite popular, being the most checked in beer at 4 of the locations. In total, there are 11 different styles of beer out of the 22 top checked in beers (50%). Great diversity, if you ask me.
This is definitely just a small snapshot of the beers offered throughout New Jersey. Driving around the Garden State, you may be surprised what you will find. If you're traveling the Jersey shore in Monmouth County, you can find an wild ale brewed with mulberry at Carton Brewing or an imperial porter brewed with locally roasted coffee at Kane Brewing. Head out west to Milford, and you'll find yourself in a British style pub, and swear you were in Cardiff. Heading down to Cape May? Stop in Tuckahoe Brewing and Cape May Brewing for a smoked porter and a cranberry wheat using Pinelands cranberry.
There's tons of great beer in New Jersey, and it's only getting better. Keep posted, as I will be taking a look at these Untappd stats every 4 months or so. Cheers!
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