New List Ranks 10 Best Cities for Beer Lovers

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Asheville is a brewery-friendly city featured on's new list. (Explore Asheville) is out with a new list ranking the “10 Best Cities for Beer Lovers in the U.S.” As internet lists that rank anything go, the results are sure to elicit enthusiasm as well as mild controversy.


First, let’s talk about how the website came up with its rankings. says it based its best cities for beer lovers list by looking at:

  • Cities with populations above 50,000 people and at least five breweries
  • Calculating the number of breweries per 100,000 people in specific locations

The website’s top city for beer lovers in 2019 was Asheville, North Carolina. Asheville is no stranger to best beer city nods. The town nestled in the southeast part of the Appalachians caters to people who love the outdoors, live music, fall foliage, artistry, and of course, craft beer. The city’s easily-walkable South Slope area is dotted with brewpubs and breweries, along with several downtown hotels and online rentals, giving beer lovers the ability to enjoy an Asheville beercation without needing to rely on a car.

(VISIT: Find U.S. Breweries)

Asheville has built such a strong rep with craft beer lovers that the area is now home to the eastern headquarters for both New Belgium Brewing and Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., two of the Top 50 U.S. craft brewing companies by sales volume. Oskar Blues Brewing also has a taproom and brewery about 30 miles south in Brevard.

Here’s a look at how the rest of’s best beer cities list rounds out:

  1. Asheville, North Carolina
  2. Portland, Maine
  3. Bend, Oregon
  4. Kalamazoo, Michigan
  5. Boulder, Colorado
  6. Vista, California
  7. Leesburg, Virginia
  8. Greenville, South Carolina
  9. Fort Collins, Colorado
  10. Pensacola, Florida crunched numbers for 50 beer cities in their full survey. See more details about cities 11 through 50 on their website.

Jess Baker walked into a beer fest in 2010 and realized beer had come a long way from what her dad had been drinking since the 70s. She served as editor-in-chief of from spring 2016 to spring 2020, bringing you stories about the people who are the heartbeat behind U.S. craft brewing. She's a runner, a die-hard Springsteen fan, a mom who is always scouting family-friendly breweries, and always in search of a darn good porter. is fully dedicated to small and independent U.S. breweries. We are published by the Brewers Association, the not-for-profit trade group dedicated to promoting and protecting America’s small and independent craft brewers. Stories and opinions shared on do not imply endorsement by or positions taken by the Brewers Association or its members.