30 Great IPAs to Drink Before You Die

Hoppy brews dominate taps and beer-store shelves, so it pays to drink 'em with a sense of purpose—starting right now


Great Divide Titan IPA

From: Denver, CO
ABV: 7.1%
Website: greatdivide.com

Jimmy Carbone says: Last spring, Georg Riedel led a tasting of beer glasses to find the perfect IPA glass. One of the typical beers in the category he chose was Great Divide's Titan IPA. It was a good choice—right balance of hops, color, and body. After that night, it became my go-to IPA for the summer and fall. When you're stuck at a package store and want a good IPA, go for this!

  • http://twitter.com/MJA773 MJA

    anti hero ipa from revolution brewing in hcicago

  • http://twitter.com/amoney22 AM

    Osirus from SunKing brewery in Indy

  • Jack Nuts

    Seriously? No Pliny The Elder? Really?

    • Csulli

      and no pliny the younger…

      • scottusmagnus

        at least he did not sleep on the beach like the elder. No pliny’s in Michigan….does a clone at home count?

    • TangentMan

      Came here to say this. Pliny is well regarded as one of, if not the, best IPAs in the country.

      • Cyclo-hops

        Knew there would be some RR fans p’d off hahahaha not going to lie surprised as well it wasn’t on here and sculpin was. I like Pliny elder&younger but no crazed about it. Surprised Drake’s Black Label & Knee Deep’s Hoptologist & Simtra didn’t make it.

        • http://twitter.com/jstreebin Jarrett Streebin

          agreed, hard to call this a list without including pliny, one of the top 3. pretty east coast biased

          • Daniel

            except it’s not east-coast biased at all

            of the 26 american beers:

            11 are from the east (4 from new england, 4 from ny/nj, 2 from delaware, 1 from florida)

            4 are from the midwest (2 from michigan, 1 from illinois, 1 from minn.)

            11 are from the west (9 from california, 1 from wyoming, 1 from colorado)

      • gdm

        I personally like his Blind Pig a bit better. Pliny is good but id take a blind pig over it or a hop stoopid for its availability and price over it.

    • http://www.beerreviewsprofsudz.com/ Professor Sudz

      Pliny is an Imperial India Pale Ale – granted there are a couple others that are included on the list, but whoever put this together was probably trying to keep it to IPAs

      • Pete Baker

        The Younger is a TIPA and the Elder a DIPA. Neither, according to RR, is an IIPA.

        • http://www.beerreviewsprofsudz.com/ Professor Sudz

          And what, pray tell, is the difference between an imperial india pale ale and a double india pale ale? And actually, the Younger is a IIIPA

      • http://www.facebook.com/dominic.blais.5 Dominic Blais

        not if they put hop slam

    • http://www.facebook.com/dominic.blais.5 Dominic Blais

      ya pliny is how i got my mom to drink beer

    • jb1907

      Well, maybe they are being very specific since PTE is a Double IPA.

  • johnny

    Odell IPA!

  • http://www.facebook.com/troy.raszka Troy Raszka

    Weyerbacher (PA) Double Simcoe IPA, 9% ABV
    Thomas Creek (SC) Up The Creek Extreme IPA, 12.5% ABV

    What about the Stone, Rogue, Terrapin, and Peak offerings?

    Happy to see that Cigar City made the cut! Florida Beer’s Swamp Ape is also really good!

  • Mark from Ohio

    Great brews. Had a number. Will definitely have to have a number more. My bucket list grows longer. Here’s another to consider — Lake Erie Monster, a fairly recent offering from the Conway brothers at Cleveland’s Great Lakes Brewing Company.

  • Joe

    For real: Pliny the Elder.

  • Nick

    Bell’s Two Hearted. Total snub.

    • Brendan Duede

      Agreed, even Founder’s has said Two Hearted is better than their all centennial hop ipa

      • jc

        And who at founders admitted that? No way that happened… maybe a random employee but not as a company… come on man..

        • mibeerdrinkr

          No employee @ Founders would ever say that.

  • Beer Snob

    Cigar City white oak Jai Alai and Bells Two Hearted Ale should probably be up there too :)

  • bhizzle


  • Chuck

    Southern Tier IPA (NY)

    Middle Ages Impaled Ale (Syracuse, NY)

    Knee Deep Brewing – Simtra, Hoptologist (CA)

    there are so many!!

  • Ian

    Two Brothers is in Warrenville, IL, not Kalamazoo.

  • jz

    FYI…Two Brothers is from Warrenville, IL, not Kalamazoo, MI.

    • First We Feast

      @8f4e605a798fd168346d39b426a7b899:disqus Typo carried over from Bells, fixed. Thanks.

  • Stereotypical_White_Fella

    Dogfish Head is the best brewery in the world

    • Sean


  • man

    No Stone, Pliny, Blind Pig, or Two Hearted

  • Morgan

    3 Floyd’s Zombie Dust

  • http://www.facebook.com/brian.lafleur.370 Brian LaFleur

    Cigar City humidors by far the best on the list next to 120 Minute IPA buy Dogfish Head but you are missing 1 very important brewery and that’s oskar blues you can’t beat the Gubna or deviant dales.

  • http://www.facebook.com/todd.cuddington Todd Cuddington

    I’d need to have Hercules, also from Great Divide, on the list. Even better than Titan, for “special occasions”…

    • kj

      Hercules is a great beer

  • http://www.facebook.com/bob.consiglio Bobby Consiglio

    Great Lakes Burning River Beer, and Commodore Perry IPA’s are two great ones. And the company is extremely environmentally conscious. All of their beers are hoppy like Stone or Dogfishead. I imagine if this was a Christmas Ale list, Great Lakes would be at the top of the list :)

  • Notanidiot

    Hey idiots, CCB doesn’t barrel age any of their IPAs. It’s ‘cedar aged’ which means with cedar chips. Dumbasses

    • Anthony

      Your snide and arrogant response aside, I appreciate the correction. Thought it saw some time in a barrel. That aside it’s still a great beer and interesting selection for people to check out. Cheers.

  • teapot

    double crooked tree by dark horse brewery should be on this list without a doubt

  • hopnautical

    Some of these are not IPA’s. Have to question a list that doesn’t include any Alpine, Ska, Odell, Breckenridge, Port, Coronado, Avery, Russian River, Four Peaks, Papago, Sun Up, Marble, La Cumbre or Lumberyard.

    • Montanaandy

      Yep, omitting Mycernary and Pliny does not make sense…

  • Josh

    Uh, the fact that Pliny the Elder isn’t on this list immediately makes the list – and the reviewers – suspect. Ignoring the IPA on the market is incomprehensible.

    • Josh


    • soul68

      Pliny is a DIPA. It’s not really a good comparison if you are rating IPAs with DIPAs. Need another list of best DIPAs to try before you die.
      Pliny and Sucks would be right up there.

  • Planetoid

    Uinta? Bell’s? HopDevil? Wha?

  • http://www.facebook.com/bret.hedges.3 Bret Hedges

    bells two hearted. I could name a half dozen more but that one jumps out. much better balance than 90minute IMO. Is arrogant bastard considered an imperial IPA or something?

  • Andrew Moffitt

    Port Brewing Company in San Marcos, CA produces a fresh-hop IPA named “High Tide”. It is among the best IPAs I have ever tasted.

  • Adam

    Any “best of” IPA list that leaves out Pliny the Elder is a false list, unworthy of consideration or merit.

  • Jon

    I used to drink Torpedos every day. Then I started getting fat.

  • Jon

    Three of these were in my fridge (Dogfish 90, 120, Brooklyn IPA) were in my fridge when I read this

  • Jim

    No Kuhnhenn’ D.R.I.P.A. (Double Rice I.P.A.) –it got a gold in the American IPA category at the World Beer Fest.

  • deniser

    Dear , Dear,, Dear. Missing Zombie Dust and Lagunitas Sucks, Firestone Walker Double Jack IPA, Great Lakes Rye of the Tiger, so many superior IPAs

    • Cyclo-hops

      I agree with SUCKS it’s the beer of the year.

    • http://twitter.com/CharlotteBeer Daniel

      Zombie Dust is a pale ale.

    • soul68

      Sucks is a DIPA. One of my favs, but it doesn’t belong in the rated category.

  • Gary

    New England brewing company ghandi bot – check it!

  • Fletch

    You have to include Pliny the Elder and Double Sunshine IPA from Lawson’s Finest Liquids! As difficult as they can be to find, they probably the 2 best in the country.

  • Liz

    Some great beers, but I really consider the DIPAS a related but different take on the classic IPA, and I think intermixing them on an IPA list is misleading.
    Is there some way to make this a printable list? I’m keeping a list of beers to try (especially Michigan and Upper Midwest beers, since I just moved to that region), and your page layout just isn’t providing the juice to do that.

  • csulli

    I’ve had over 1/2 of them, not doing to bad!!!

  • TBone

    These are 30 great IPAs to drink before you die. Most people will die never having the opportunity to try either Pliny.

    • bruindre

      More likely to find Pliny than HD. I’m just sayin’…

  • GimpyGomer

    Nothing from WA period?

    • NWHophead

      yeah, ridiculous to have no Wa beers, no Bend/Portland beers and include 2 Dogfish and Sierra Nevadas? Of the ones listed I have had most, none come close to a Black Raven, Fremont, Boneyard, or Crux.

  • Pointingouttheobvious

    Man you guys sure do like to complain. Big deal Pliny is not on this list. Can’t have every great IPA on the list, it’s not possible. Sheesh man. A lot of self righteousness in the air. Just enjoy that it’s still a good list.

  • Love my Abita

    Abita Jockamo is missing…..

  • Tod Cox

    I have to say Pliny is not in my top 10. Top 30, probably so. I’m a bit tainted since the service was horrible at their brewery. I was more surprised to see so many import “IPA’s” on the list. I have yet to have an import IPA that I really liked.

  • astral707

    Psst, it’s Portland, ME not MA ;) …That beer is on my list for sure though.

  • Ipa

    Pliny is great, but the bite it once had has changed. Once you have tried every beer on the list, then you can compare what’s not there.

  • Sean

    Great Lakes Alchemy Hour is pretty amazing. Stone IPA. Definitely Bell’s Two Hearted. This is like trying to choose 5 songs to have stranded on an island – IMPOSSIBLE! Way too many choices out there.

  • http://www.facebook.com/bob.pfister Bob Pfister

    this beer is unbelievable, trust me

  • Scott

    Carton Brewing is in Atlantic Highlands, New Jersey. Really great beer and cool brewery to tour if you get a chance, all really chill people there.

  • http://www.facebook.com/patrick.brickey Patrick Brickey

    You missed Bell’s Two Hearted

  • K

    Not a single IPA from Oregon. Thats down right silly.

    • russinmaine

      Ninkasi Tricerahops and Total Domination come to mind?

      • Clyco-hops

        Tricerhops is good but not worthy of this list and TD is blah!

    • http://twitter.com/flamingzucchini Allie White

      Right?! Where’s the Boneyard? RPM, Hop Venom, or Notorious…

  • Honu

    No Pliny=no credibility. Especially with so many so-so beers on the list. Lame.

  • Huffhines

    While plenty of good choices on this list, I can’t help but feel it’s a little tainted by the exclusion of Pliny. It might be a tad overrated, but it’s hands and feet above many of the IPA’s on this list. And Brewdog Punk IPA over the Hardcore IPA? Lastly, the guy leaves Green Flash Imperial IPA off the list? That might be one of the more harmonious IPA’s out there. I guess these kind of lists are hindered by their subjectivity. But definitely try those beers that I have listed. It’s worth your time.

  • Lupilin

    Maximus I.P.A. from Lagunitas Brewery is 100% better than their standard I.P.A.

    • trenty

      and Hop Stupid is way better than Maximus as is Sucks, but they left off Kern River Brewing’s Citra, which is fine by me. nothing to see here, this is not the IPA you are looking for.

  • Mike

    No Alesmith IPA? Travesty. And an IPA list with no Port IPAs is horribly wrong: Poor Man’s, Hop 15, Hop Suey, Poor Vato’s, so many to pick.

  • shechris

    Gotta get to Norfolk, VA for Smartmouth Brewery’s Rule G IPA and Notch 9 Double IPA – They ROCK!

  • http://twitter.com/ruminski Rob Ruminski

    Their panel needs to travel more. I can’t imagine a great IPA list without Thornbridge Brewing’s Jaipur (UK) or Feral Brewing’s Hop Hog (Aus). Good to see 8 Wired on the list, though.

  • Cari

    Uinta Dubhe Imperial Black IPA is super tasty for a 9.2% and it’s brewed with Hemp seed. I’ve had about 10 of these beers… and Pliny… Unita’s black IPA still my fav.

  • yourmom

    Notice that this is an east coast reviewers list? I know personally that the west coast brews WAY BETTER IPAs than the east coast. The fact that Pliny is not on the list is proof of this. Way to go with the blind pig mention though you dumbass writers.

  • Get Real

    this list has lost all credibility.. Pliny is so good, it speaks out even when it’s not present..

  • BarryMak

    KRBC Citra has got to be in the top 10 at least.

  • Jnsjnsjns

    I agree with much of this. I do think that boneyard’s rpm should be on there. And really, Pliny the Elder is a fine beer, but I think it’s scarcity/marketing is 95% of the reason why people FREAK out over it. It is good, but in my humble opinion not THAT good.

  • http://www.facebook.com/fnord.cicconetti Fnord Cicconetti

    Fat Head’s Head Hunter IPA!

  • Blues Healer

    Of course, any “best of” list of beers is liable to end in a pissing match — pun intended — however, it’s important to point out the regional weight of the panel: “NYC-based beer writers, brewers, bars owners, and educators”. There are many fine micro breweries that are not widely distributed.

  • http://www.beerreviewsprofsudz.com/ Professor Sudz

    I replied to Jack Nuts about this list being IPAs and not Imperial IPAs, but now that I read the rest of your comments, I see that all of you have missed the distinction

  • http://www.facebook.com/ron.kuhnel Ron Kuhnel

    East Coast bias is obvious with no Pliny among many other missing obvious ones and no beers from Oregon makes the list suspect. Bells Two Hearted should be there as many have said. Lot of great beers there and I have had about 3/4 of them so I am speaking from experience. But this is not a really accurate list of the top IPAs but there is not a bad beer on that list.

  • Mike S.

    I respectfully submit 3 Floyds Arctic Panzer Wolf.

  • Ken Reinertson

    I will have to say even though it is a Canadian IPA, Alexander Keith’s is a pretty darn good IPA.

    • danishh

      Not sure if trolling or just stupid.

      Keith’s isn’t an IPA or even a good beer. It’s a national embarrassment.

  • http://www.facebook.com/libertard David Libertard

    Great list, but there are two favorites of mine rom the south that I wish you had tried. Good People Brewing Co. of Birmingham, AL has two superb IPAs. The original IPA and the Hitchhiker Double IPA. They are both fantastic! Also, Terrapin Brewing Co.’s Hopsecutioner is excellent.

  • IPALover

    New Belgium’s Ranger IPA.

  • IPA Newbie

    Goose Island IPA out of Chicago lifted the veil from my eyes and I will forever be grateful and a lifelong fan. (Yes I know they’re part of AB now, but I don’t care).

  • rev ranger rodger

    at age 60 I have enjoyed 10 of the 30…which means I will live a lot longer to sample the rest.

  • Jimmyhat

    No beers from Canada, Washington or Oregon? Kinda missed the Cascades/Pacific Northwest AKA the heartland of IPAs!

    • atheistmonk

      Yup, i live in Portland. True that about IPA.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jenifer.butler.9 Jenifer Butler

    Can not respect this list. Pliny is so blatantly absent! I just assume this must really be an advertisement in disguise.

  • Kj

    Stone ruination?

  • aaron

    Pagination should be illegal. Where’s the link to the full list?

  • BeerGuru

    No Hop Devil, and I agree Pliny, Ruination, 2 hearted etc….

  • BeerAndSausage

    Victory Hop Devil where are ya?

  • SaltwatercowboyHB

    I must agree with almost everyone, No Pliny says it’s not a educated list!

  • CDB

    What?! No Bell’s Two Hearted?!

  • BulldogMurph

    Alesmith should definitely be on this list, probably one of the most well balanced IPAs I’ve ever put to my lips.

  • Againnagain

    Rushed to the comments, after reading the list, ready to rail against the obvious omissions of both Plinys. Looks like we have a quorum. The whole “they are a double or triple” as a reason to leave them off is ridiculous: the Hopslam, 90 and 120 minute beers are on this list and all fall somewhere b/w double, triple or imperial.

  • alex

    Not a single English IPA in the list?!

  • Chris

    I’d suggest Worthington’s White Shield, which I believe is the oldest IPA still being brewed. It’s been brewed since 19th century and there’s really nothing like it.

  • Hondo

    No Oregon or Washington IPA’s and no Pliny. I appreciate the attempt but you all need to get out west, FAST!

  • http://www.facebook.com/dominic.blais.5 Dominic Blais

    what no odells no pliny no cisco no big sky, no maharaja

  • Bligbluemaxx

    Not bad…. I have had 8 so far…. In my own meandering beer safari. That’s 27% so far… Which is good…. Cause if I had all 30, I would be worried about my longevity!!

  • Trust_me_Im_anEngineer

    Very surprised they put Centennial and not Founder’s Devil Dancer. And as stated, you’ve got to have at least one of the Pliny’s on here.

  • Marty A

    Pyramind Outburst is an Outstanding IIPA

  • Chris W.

    Bell’s Two Hearted Ale, Founders Double Trouble, and Southern Tier Oak Aged Unearthly IPA are some of my favorites that are not on here. For a limited release brew, Mikkeller Crooked Moon DIPA is amazing. Love Stone Sublimely Self Righteous and Lagunitas A Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale as well if those fit the criteria. Cheers!

  • CubfanIPAMan

    No Bombay by Boat, no Drake’s Aroma Coma, no Pliny, no Lagunitas Sucks, no HopStoopid, no Inversion IPA, no Bell’s Two Hearted, no Drake’s 1500, but Sierra Celebration is included?

  • brandsteve

    This list doesn’t even have the best IPAs from many of these craft brewers. What are you smoking? I sure don’t need any of that.

  • T.

    I won’t add to the Pliny pile-on (both should be included) but I would also mention 3Floyds Dreadnaught. Two-Hearted has been mentioned and absolutely should be on here as well.

  • Simon Walker

    Have you tried Feral Brewing Company Hop Hog IPA from Swan Valley in West Australia.
    Rated recently as the best beer in Australia and is very very hoppy and so full of taste and can smell it from a yard away. Currently my most fav drop and drinking them right now!

  • Michael Segal

    No Great Lakes Brewing Company in Cleveland, Ohio beer? Not worth trying anything until you have done this!!!!

  • John Brinthaupt

    Ithaca flower power and several others, should be at the top of this list. Bells two hearted, Russian river, to name a few. Although I haven’t tried all on the list, they are definitely better than most I saw here. Just my opinion .

  • Christopher Hall

    Hopsolutely by Allentown Brewing Company (PA). Best IPA I will drive a hundred miles out of my way to buy a case for. It’s a triple, so possibly why it’s not on the list. Aka Fegley’s Brewery.http://www.thebrewworks.com/brews/flagship-beers/hopsolutely-triple-ipa/

  • dpolinak

    Ithaca Flower Power, Uinta Hopnotch, Full Pint Chinookie are my 3 favorites.

  • Rosinante

    No Hoponius Union

  • matt wharton

    Two Hearted, Firestone Walker Double Jack, Pliny the Elder, Maximus, and Ruination should be on this list. Brooklyn IPA being on this list is an insult to every other beer on the list.

  • Rodrigo Menendez

    Lagunitas Hop Stoopid
    Ale Smith IPA
    Three Floyds

    Cmon guys are You getting sponsored?

  • Martin

    Bell’s Two hearted and Revolution brewing’s Anti hero are two great IPAs I would Putin my list.

  • Billy V

    Kuhnhenn DRIPA could easily be here.

  • John

    Sniff My Sack IPA from Up Yer Mutha Brewing Co.

    • Sally Ann

      very hard to get but, no doubt, the single best IPA in the modern sense—thanks for mentioning it John—if people can track it down, then their lives will have been worth living

  • hops

    Everyone knows that Oregon IPAs are the premier choice for hop heads everywhere. Not a single Oregon IPA makes this list? Boo you list of the “30 best” I reject you!

  • jb1907

    The fact that that are 30 American IPA we are “complaining” about is a great thing.

  • Cigfran

    No Odell’s? I cannot believe that none of their IPA’s made the cut…

  • Hophead

    Jade IPA from Foothills Brewing in Winston-Salem, NC.

  • Cider Core Paul

    I love well-balanced IPA’s, but I have turned into a cider fan, there’s not many Hoppy ciders out there yet, but I compiled a list of some of my favorites: http://cidercore.com/?p=45

  • Jay

    Stone Ruination not on this list is a sin

  • hulagirl02

    Is there a way to print the list?!?!

  • Phil

    I realize Salt Lake City is not known for any sort of alcohol-related discussion; much less good beer brewing, but Squatters IPA is one of the finest available. And it’s available in the airport if you happen to be passing through on your way to the ski slopes in and around Deer Valley. Delicious!

  • Jeff

    Victory Hop Devil is snubbed!! Unbelievable!!

    • Garrett

      Victory Dirt Wolf double ipa is one of the best if not the best.

  • Jeff

    Also, Stone is terrible…move along

  • toronto.i.p.eh

    great lakes brewery in toronto has many great ipas worthy
    robhop, karma citra, thrust

  • wkycardfan

    There’s no such thing as a “good” IPA, much less a “great” IPA. They are just nasty beer. I guess I’ll just die with my taste buds intact.

  • Matt Darkness

    I know I will catch hell for this but…..I am a bit hesitant when the judges of IPA come from NYC. We like our IPA’s over here on the left side and we have figured it out. How you come up with 10 is beyond me. I just had a beechwood IPA made over here in the LBC that was phenomenal. and I had an El Segundo Hop Tanker that was ridiculously good. This list should be more like 50 IPA’s to be more realistic.

  • JJ

    Dogfish Head 90 minute and Racer 5 are really good.

  • Brian

    Sam Adams Rebel Ipa Ballantine Ipa Stone Ipa…are hands down the best IPA’s around!!!

  • Brian

    I’m about to crack a Ballast Point Sculpin IPA for the first time. Smell is awesome, great taste….I would buy them again… Strong 7.0

  • Hop-along

    Late to this party, but I have to comment. The fact that Hopslam is the first on the list makes this a list of DIPAs and IPAs. Hence, open the doors to allow in Pliny, Hop Stoopid (Lagunitas) and RuinTen (Stone), and all the other great Imperials. Hell, I’d include Founder’s Triple Devil Dancer. I agree that Founder’s Two Hearted is superior to Centennial. Also, Sierra Nevada doesn’t deserve two additions – maybe one, maybe none…. I like Two Brothers Heavy Handed, but I’d have lived a complete life without it. But I would’t have lived a full life without O’So’s Lupulin Maximus (a hop cone in nearly every bottle) and NoDa’s Hop, Drop and Roll (maybe too new for this list).

  • voxullus

    There is no such thing as a “great” IPA. In fact, there is no such thing as an IPA at all. The label has been hijacked and abused. It means nothing more for a beer style than “export” does.
    Most of the stuff is poorly conceived unbalanced hipster pig swill.

  • voxullus

    US IPAs are all hyped cultureless unbalanced swill.

  • Nickv

    Southville Hop in the UK. Far superior to Punk Dog.

  • Adam Ketzler

    CBC Bodhi or this list is worthless.

  • Al Key

    Pliny the Elder is the most overrated beer on the planet.

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