Yesterday, writer Will Gordon set a certain segment of the suds-swilling, butt-scratching Internet on fire with a list on Deadspin titled, “36 Cheap American Beers, Ranked.” Since we’d been working on our own cheap-beer rankings in honor of July 4, our first thought was, “Damn, we’ve been scooped!”, followed shortly by, “Oh wait, this is not an original idea at all!”, and then finally—upon reading through Gordon’s hastily summarized picks—”This list completely blows!” So in the interest of (un)civilized dialogue, we decided to respond directly to Monsieur Gordon and settle this matter before any good Americans have their day ruined.
First up, props where props are due: Shout out to Gordon for including regional classics like Iron City, Natty Bo, and Genesee Cream Ale. Props also for knowing what the hell Beer 30 and Game Day Ice Ale are, because straight up, we have never actually seen them in real life.
But let’s not linger on the positives, because for the most part, this list is what Bravo TV might describe as a “hot mess.” First of all, ranking thirty-six cheap beers, some of which don’t even have a reason attached to them, is a good way to let us know that you could only think of 36 beers, but that’s understandable—you might still be tired from writing amount of words about how Budweiser Black Crown is not that bad, when really it is horrendous (yes, we tried it too).
But more importantly, there are some inconceivable choices in the mix that undermine the validity of the entire endeavor. Here we have Lone Star, positioned super high at #8, yet no mention whatsoever of Shiner Bock, which is controversial enough to warrant comment if we’re being generous, and grounds for a complete disbarment from Cheap Beer Drinkers Club of America if we’re being real. Then there’s the fact that a full five of the top ten—Schaefer, Olympia, Rainier, Lone Star, and, PBR— are owned by Pabst Blue Ribbon and are, essentially, just regional versions of Pabst Blue Ribbon, which makes us wonder whether you are either getting a kickback from PBR or you just really love PBR. We’ll assume it’s the latter, since you ranked the hipster beer accessory of choice way up there at #5 and even included a self-conscious defense about “image.” Well, we all know about the In the spirit of July 4th and the Internet, two bastions of saying what you want in a loud and obnoxious manner, we decided to set the record straight with the real ranking of the top 8 cheap beers in America. Read it before you start drinking today, and then we can all forget this ever happened as we drift off into adjunct-lager oblivion.