Best Cities for Beer Lovers: Top Spots for Drinkers and Breweries in the U.S.

Best Cities for Beer Lovers: Top Spots for Drinkers and Breweries in the U.S.

People having fun drinking at their local brewery (stock photo)

Best Cities for Beer Lovers: Top Spots for Drinkers and Breweries in the U.S.

If you’re a die-hard beer lover in the U.S., you’re not alone. In 2019, the U.S. beer industry sold around $120 billion worth of beer through retail businesses. Although sales dropped in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the industry is making a robust comeback. The U.S. is truly a beer haven, producing 81% of its beer domestically in 2021 while importing only 19%. But where are the best cities for beer drinkers to live?

To find the best cities for beer lovers, we analyzed 393 cities based on the following metrics: total number of breweries, breweries per 100,000 residents, the average number of beers per brewery, bars per 100,000 residents, and the average price of a pint. For more information on our data sources and methodology, check out the Data and Methodology section below.

Key Findings

Map of Top Beer Drinking Cities

  1. Chicago Leads with the Most Breweries: Chicago boasts 103 breweries, surpassing the runner-up by 21. Although it didn’t make the top 10 overall, it secured the 35th spot in our rankings.
  2. Top Three Beer Cities Hold Steady: Pittsburgh, PA; Bend, OR; and Milwaukee, WI retained their top spots from the previous year, showcasing the consistency of their beer culture.
  3. Affordable Beer in Top Cities: The average price per pint in our study is $4.68. Eight out of the top 10 cities offer pints for less, with Clifton, NJ, offering the cheapest at $1.85.

(See Also: Pittsburgh Named Drunkest City in Pennsylvania)

Top 10 Best Cities for Beer Drinkers

List of Top Beer Drinking Cities

(See Also: Pittsburgh Named Drunkest City in Pennsylvania)

  1. Pittsburgh, PA: Pittsburgh ranks No. 1 for the second consecutive year, with 33 breweries and an affordable average pint price of $4.00. Highlights include the German-style Penn Brewery and the outdoor-centric Grist House Craft Brewery.
  2. Bend, OR: Bend holds its No. 2 spot with 22 breweries and an average pint cost of $4.00. Popular stops include Deschutes Brewery, home of the Black Butte Porter.
  3. Milwaukee, WI: Milwaukee, with 33 breweries and a notable number of bars, ties with Pittsburgh for the total number of breweries. Famous spots include Schlitz and other renowned breweries.
  4. St. Louis, MO: Jumping into the No. 4 spot, St. Louis is home to 23 breweries, including the iconic Anheuser-Busch. The average pint costs $4.50.
  5. Asheville, NC: Known for its strong beer culture, Asheville ranks first in breweries per 100,000 residents and offers a variety of beer events. The average pint here is $5.00.
  6. Cincinnati, OH: Despite dropping to No. 6, Cincinnati offers 30 breweries and tasty IPAs like Rhinegeist’s Truth IPA. The average pint costs $5.00.
  7. New Orleans, LA: New Orleans tops the list for bars per 100,000 residents and offers inexpensive pints at $3.25. It has 17 breweries, making it a lively spot for beer lovers.
  8. Fort Collins, CO: Fort Collins, with 22 breweries and a pint cost of $4.50, is home to Odell Brewing Company and New Belgium Brewing.
  9. Austin, TX: Austin’s 45 breweries contribute to its high ranking, with the city known for its vibrant craft beer scene and open-air venues.
  10. Missoula, MT: Missoula offers 11 breweries and 31 bars per 100,000 residents, making it a top spot for beer enthusiasts.

Data and Methodology

To determine the best cities for beer drinkers, we analyzed cities from the 2021 Census with a population of at least 60,000 and available Numbeo data. We compared 393 cities across five metrics:

  • Total number of breweries: Sourced from (November 2022).
  • Breweries per 100,000 residents: Data from and the 2021 Census.
  • Average number of beers per brewery: Sourced from (November 2022).
  • Bars per 100,000 residents: Data from the 2020 County Business Patterns Survey and the 2021 Census.
  • Average price for a pint of domestic draught beer: Sourced from (January 2022).

We ranked each city in each metric, applied weights, and created a final score. The city with the best average ranking received an index score of 100, and the city with the worst received a score of 0.

Explore these top cities and enjoy the diverse and vibrant beer culture they offer. Whether you’re looking for the best city to drink in, the best city for drinkers, or the city with the most breweries, these destinations have something special for every beer enthusiast.

More Links and Information

(See Also: Pittsburgh Named Drunkest City in Pennsylvania)

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