Maxim Beer Awards: Strange Brews

Have a beer-snob friend? Show him up with one of these easy-to-drink, tougher-to-find bottles.

Have a beer-snob friend? Show him up with one of these easy-to-drink, tougher-to-find bottles.

Westvleteren 12
Westvleteren Brewery, Belgium
Extremely limited
Generally considered the best in the world, thanks in part to its rarity—the Trappist monks who brew it limit customers to one case each—and its rumored secret ingredient: unicorn pee.

Oaked Arrogant Bastard
Stone Brewing Company, Escondido, CA
Year-round, 35 states
As the name implies, this unique reddish brew, boasting a complex mix of orange, malt, and caramel flavors, thinks quite highly of itself. And with good reason. That dick!

Rodenbach Vintage 2008
Palm Breweries, Belgium
Extremely limited
The legendary Belgian brewery is releasing a mere 30,000 bottles of this tart, sherrylike rarity, all from a single barrel. Most of it won’t make it to our side of the pond, but manage to snag one for your old prep school pal and he might reward you with a no-show job in grandpappy’s company!

Hitachino Nest White Ale
Kiuchi Brewery, Japan
Year-round, nationwide
This award-winning Belgian-style wheat beer is light-bodied and layered with mild spices like coriander and nutmeg, offering the perfect escape during pretentious conver­sations about art-house films.

Pliny the Elder
Russian River Brewing Company, Santa Rosa, CA
Year-round,five states
As you enjoy this aggressively hopped double IPA, tell friends it’s named for the Roman scholar
who created the botanical name for hops. Then get punched in the nose.

Good Harbor Golden Wheat
Leelanau Brewing Company, Leeland, MI

Availability: Year-round, five states and Denmark
A masterful, oak-aged American version of bière de garde, a Franco-Belgian farmhouse brew.

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