Lagunitas makes more than one amazing beer, as does Stone Brewing Co. Today, both of these once-tiny California breweries have blossomed into household names that you can spot on almost any decent tap. But they’re only two of the 316 craft breweries found in the monster state of California, which can boast almost double the craft breweries of the next mightiest beer state, Washington.
It’s one of many factoids you’ll pick up in The New Yorker’s interactive infographic Mapping the Rise of Craft Beer. It employs a relatively simple interface--a few toggles and mouseovers--to convey an incredible amount of information, a brown, tan, and yellow state of the union of frothy fuzzyheadedness.
Now, I know what you’re thinking: “I guess I’ve gotta move to California now.” Untrue! A more studied approach to consumption would be to weigh not just how many breweries are in a given state, but how many breweries are in a given state per person. In this regard, Vermont takes the crown. They may only have 25 craft breweries across the state, but with a population of only 626,201 people, that’s the best ratio of man to brewery in the U.S. Or if all-around performance is more your speed, Oregon should probably be your pick. It ranks fourth in variety, fifth in production, and second in breweries per capita.
It’s all enough to make a man wary of the sustainability of the craft beer movement. That is, until he cracks another cold one in the name of supporting the underdog.