The 5 most important BrewDog beers
Here's an exercise for you: pick something with which you're reasonably familiar (such as a band, actor, sports team etc), and then try to select what you think to be their five most important moments. For those three categories above, you might riffle the grey matter for the five standout albums, films, or players, for example. Some are fairly easy; Bruce Willis, for instance (Die Hards 1-5, in that order). Some, not so; Maroon Five (…er…). It's hugely subjective, of course, Maroon 5 fans - that's what makes it so interesting!
Take breweries. Pick one and come up with a list of the five most important beers that they have released. Again, this depends on your interpretation of the word 'important'. It could be the five best, in your opinion; those that have meant the most to you, as you've learned to appreciate what that particular brewery are about. Or, alternatively, it could be the five that you think have defined that brewery, to you and others, as they have developed on their beer-making journey.
Here at BrewDog, at the time of writing we have a grand total of 215 beers listed on the beer review site RateBeer. If you could shuffle through that long, long, list and take five - which would they be, and why? To start things off, we'll throw our hat into the ring and nominate five we consider to be amongst the most 'important' we have made. We've even shown our working out, too. Listed in order of release, see if your five match up with ours...
Punk IPA (2007)
The first ever BrewDog beer, and still our best-selling flagship; you'd probably expect to see Punk on this list – and you'd be right! But Punk IPA is more than just a focal point; it's a great metaphor for the development of BrewDog as a whole. It reflected the influences of James and Martin, and the frustrations that led them to start the brewery. It also evolved as they did, changing in 2011 to gain the benefits of dry-hopping. Since then, it has led from the front as our exports skyrocket, becoming the biggest-selling IPA in Scandinavia.
Talking of early influences, our admiration for Stone Brewing Company led to one of our first major collaborations with Escondido's finest. Following a brewing visit to California (which yielded Juxtaposition Pilsner), having the guys return the favour at Fraserburgh was a fantastic moment. The result? A black double Belgian IPA by the name of Bashah. Although our barrel-ageing programme had already begun - with the Paradox series - ageing Bashah on different ingredients (raspberries and tayberries) sparked something in us, and became a forerunner of the many barrel-based adventures that were to follow.
Tactical Nuclear Penguin (2009)
Even though we'd been brewing for two years, Tactical Nuclear Penguin was by far the most involved beer we'd ever made – it was aged for a year and a half before we even started, for instance! Freeze-distilled to a penguin-perfect -20ºC and finishing up at 32%, the (then) world's strongest beer magnified the first stirrings of the debate on minimum pricing, and kick-started the abv-wars. A lot of people took TNP really seriously, but it was never intended that way, which is partly why we packaged each bottle inside that ultimate collectors-item; a hand-sketched, penguin-toting paper bag.
Abstrakt AB:04 (2010)
The first of the limited-edition Abstrakt series had hit the shelves the year before, and become popular straight away, but it was the fourth release that truly seemed to grab people's attention. A 15% coffee, cacao and naga chilli-infused imperial stout, AB:04 swiftly became our most sought-after beer, and the 3,200 bottles produced vanished before our very eyes. It was so well received that the decision was taken to re-brew it – and as Dog A/Dog B, this particular Abstrakt went mainstream, where it has remained to this day.
Our supporters have moved us on in so many ways, but it was cool to see how you responded when given the reigns entirely with regard to a new beer. Each stage of the brewsheet for #Mashtag was compiled via an online, multiple-choice selection process, from the base malt bill right through to the eventual name and bottle label. We didn't know where it would lead, but #Mashtag demonstrated where crowd-sourcing can take you – a 7.5% kiwi-hopped brown ale, brewed with hazelnuts and oak chips – oh, and also a neat way to socially involve BrewDog drinkers with our beer-making process, from top to toe.
(PS Don't forget we still need a label design for #MashTag 2014! Check out details on how to enter your scribbles here Closes 23rd March 2014)
Yeah, we're tooting our own trumpets – but each of these beers marks the product of a point in time for BrewDog. Taking 5 out of 215 is no easy task, though – do you agree with our list? What do you think the five most 'important' beers are that BrewDog have made?
Posted in - brewdog-news
- Only one - Libertine. Discovering an American-style craft beer in Nottingham after trying, but failing, to like British cask ales made Libertine a Godsend to me. Tarheel22.03.2014
- Lastnights beer was PUNK Chemo22.03.2014
- Hardcore that is all S.gleave firstname.lastname@example.org
- Picking a favourite 5 in order is VERY hard:
3. Hoppy Christmas
5. Mix Tape 8
Anarchist Alchemist so nearly made it into my top 5.
Still hoping to try Bashah one day, was before my craft time, as others say make another batch please guys! Cheers allmrcheeseuk20.03.2014
- Punk - always my no.1 choice
Hardcore - after a couple of Punks...
Sink the Bismarck ...wee chaser after the Punk and Hardcore
a black IPA that I only had once in Edinburgh, think it had blackberries or something in it.
- Tokyo* all the way! :) Brian19.03.2014
- Sure miss There is no Santa and Hello my name is Ingrid. Mr.Swede19.03.2014
- Zeitgeist. Proof positive to those unfamiliar with schwarzbier that Lager is not, and never has been = adjunct pilsner wannabes Sion19.03.2014
- 1 Punk
2 Hoppy Christmas
3 I Hardcore You
over 26 Brewdog beer drunk!
- Jack Hammer
- Tokyo*, like a few others it seems, would be my one for the desert island. Very important to me is the original Paradox - set me on the Brewdog trail. Fairzo18.03.2014
- Zeitgeist should be in there nom Black lagar18.03.2014
- there is no santa
libertine black ale
- Chaos Theory
Dead Pony Club
- Original Tokyo is at the top. Still my favourite beer of all time. boosy18.03.2014
- Bashah was simply fantastic and its good to see it included. Definitely your best ever Juggalo Mark18.03.2014
- Tokyo, Tokyo, Tokyo, Tokyo, Tokyo G Jess18.03.2014
- Tokyo definitely deserves a mention, its on a whole other level! Bono18.03.2014
- For me the 5 just have to be
Id have loved to have tried TNP, but t sounds from what Ive read that it was before my craft days and have likely missed it. Im gutted if that the case
- Punk IPA- Hello?!
Tokyo*- cause its my favorite if I could have 1 beer a day for the rest of my life, it would be this
Tactical Nuclear Penguin- Cause its my favorite favorite bottle
Black Tokyo* Horizon- bringing the 3 biggest imperial stouts from 3 of the worlds top brewers together to make an even better bigger imperial stout
Paradox Jura- Because its was freaking AWESOME!!! Make some more please...Christopsy18.03.2014
- The End of History... and could you do another batch... please??? xxx rept0n18.03.2014
- Punk IPA - because it was your 1st beer.
Hardcore IPA - Punks bigger brother with more attitude.
Paradox SmokeHead - my favourite whisky infused beer.
Tokyo* - just because its fantastic.
JackHammer (Mk 1) - possibly the most hoppy beer Ive ever tasted.
Pete H., Nottm18.03.2014
- Tokyo*, Paradox Arran, 5a.m Saint, Hardcore IPA, Alice Porter or Hello My Name is Ingrid. hystrix cristata18.03.2014
- Nanny State is pretty important too, a great comeback to the people crying about the high ABV. Troubledwaters18.03.2014
- Punk ipa, Hardcore ipa, Allice porter, Helo my name is Mette-marit, Paradox isle of arran, scaro18.03.2014
- I made sure Id scribbled my own list before I read yours and mine was as follows...
Sink The Bismark
I first put #Mashtag, then crossed it out and replaced it with an unspecified AB series beer.
Unfortunately Bashah was from before my craft beer journey started so didnt make the list.AleBeHonest18.03.2014
- Still gutted I missed Bashah - make it again please?? Elena, London18.03.2014
- Id add The End of History for sure! Field Brewer18.03.2014