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The Mtbr Best Beer Guide

Newbie craft beer drinkers like variety, because they’re not quite sure which style they like best. Below is a diverse list of beers that represent their respective styles well.

Weihenstephaner Hefeweissbier

The “standard” for German wheat beers, Weihenstephaner’s Hefeweissbier is available year-round in the US and clocks in at 5.4% ABV. It’s brewed at the Weihenstephan Abbey, a Benedictine monastery in Bavaria, Germany. This beer showcases sweet wheat malt, mild citrus from the hops and strong flavors of banana and clove from the yeast esters. It’s an iconic beer enjoyed by new craft beer drinkers and seasoned veterans alike. weihenstephaner.de

Victory Prima Pils

Brewed in Downington, PA, Victory Prima Pils is a great example of an American take on a classic European style. At 5.3% ABV, Prima features a clean toasted malt backbone and a floral, herbal hop presence. A hoppy German pils that is refreshing and drinkable, Prima is a nice gateway between adjunct lagers and IPAs. www.victorybeer.com

Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald

A tremendous American Porter. Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald, brewed in Cleveland, OH, comes in at 5.8% ABV and tastes of bittersweet chocolate, mild coffee, and a rich malt backbone. Mildly hopped, this is a great dark beer for those who have traditionally enjoyed beers like Guinness. www.greatlakesbrewing.com

Petrus Pale Ale

A widely-available sour beer from northern Belgium. Appealing to wine and beer drinkers alike, Petrus is a traditional Belgian sour beer aged in oak barrels. At 7.3% and featuring bright citrus, tart green apples, white wine and a dry vinegar finish, this beer is a solid welcome to the quickly-growing world of sours. www.globalbeer.com

Unibroue La Fin Du Monde

Even at 9% ABV, La Fin Du Monde is a surprisingly drinkable Belgian Tripel produced by Unibroue in Quebec, Canada. Powerful flavors of spicy fruit, candied malt and Belgian esters (banana, clove, spice) all work in tandem to make a fantastic beer to enjoy after dinner. www.unibroue.com

Next: Josh Martino’s Top 5 Beers for the Hardcore Enthusiast Fan »
About the author: Jordan Villella

Jordan comes from the steep streets of Pittsburgh PA, where he learned to dodge cars and rip single track. He has been involved in nearly every aspect of the cycling industry: from turning wrenches, store design, clothing production and bike park creation. Jordan spends his free time racing cross country and cyclocross around North America, though he has been know to enduro every now and then. His love of cycling is only second to his love of his family and punk rock.


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  • BH says:

    In 50 years of riding (no racing) I’ve never had a LBS fit a new bike, or even offer to. I’m anal & spend a lot of time the first week + with a new bike setting it up the way I like it so I’m fine with my set up & sure a lot of other avid riders are in this group. But I see a lot of people that ride new bikes AS IS – that’s the target group that really needs these services. A riding friend is this way and his new $4,500 mountain looked to be to be a very poor fit, he really did not like the bike. I thought it was too small but did not say anything (but it was a “good deal”). The LBS helped when he took it back but it still looked like a bad fit. He went to a professional fitter (2 trips) who made a number of changes including a different stem & seat post to overcome the frame being to small (his statement), he is much happier with the ride now. Looking forward to Part 2 to see if it changes my mind about being fitted.

    • shawn says:

      If an LBS cannot get you on the right frame size for a mountain bike then they should be doing something else. I would hope the people at the LBS strongly tried discourage him from buying a bike that was too small and he simply ignored their advice. I would feel horrible selling someone a $4,500 item that I knew they would not be happy with, and even worse could be dangerous. Anyone can set saddle height for free with some very basic pointers; just Google it. From there you can do minor experiments with switching spacers around from under to on top of the stem, or trying a longer/shorter stem. Also experiment with seat rail for/aft adjustments and judge how your body feels, how your control of the bike felt after each ride. Spending $300 dollars for a bike fit seems like a real waste for the large majority of people.

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