Another beer blogger put together a pretty detailed comparison between beer rankings on BeerAdvocate and Rate Beer. It's kind of a fun read (yeah, I said fun) and interesting to see just how varied opinions on beer really are. Westvleteren 12, however, does rest confidently at the top spot on both sites. Have you had it? Probably not - you can't get it anywhere outside of the abbey and its cafe across the street. So how on earth does this beer make it to #1?
Certainly, it's good. But personally, I think many beers are a lot like small, obscure bands - they tend to be rated higher than more popular ones simply because people get a kick out of bragging rights - "You haven't had TinyTown Oak-Aged Bourbon Barrel Vanilla Chocolate Plum Smoked Coffee Bacon Porter? Psshh, novice." That doesn't apply to all of them, of course. Clearly, many of those on the list are phenomenal beers. But really - Lost Abbey Yellow Bus? 53 reviews? How would that compare to Rochefort 10 (drool...) if it had 2200+ ratings?
I found it intriguing to look at the opinions on BA vs. Rate Beer. Seems there's a strong preference for the big beers, and Three Floyds is clearly a favorite (and a well-deserved one, although a wee bit overhyped in my opinion - though granted I'm not one to gush over any particular brewery anyway. Except Rogue. But they have personal significance. And, they make great beer. And gin. And rum. I digress...).
Personally, I tend to go to BA simply because there's more going on there and, well, I have it bookmarked on my browser. Honestly, though, I fit more in with the RateBeer crowd. I recommend checking out both to see where you belong. And have a beer while you're at it.
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