Getting Untappd: Top-Rated Phoenix Area Core IPA’s

By Aaron Forrester and Scott Keys collectively known as Beers N Buddies

If one thing can be said about Americans, it is that we have a love for winning and coming out on top. From exit polls in presidential races, to athletic competitions, to my sons wrestling one another on the floor, Americans have a desire to not only be the best, but to know who or what is the best. Craft beer enthusiasts are no different and there is no shortage of applications to meet this hunger to rate. They are numerous and some of the most popular include RateBeer, BeerAdvocate and Untappd. Indeed, the explosion of craft beer in the US has resulted in fans of various beers and breweries from across the country to employ these resources to contend as to who has “the best” beer.  In order to discover who is ‘king of the mountain’ for the top brews in the Phoenix Valley, we have turned to one of these resources: Untappd.

Untappd is a free smartphone app that allows craft beer fans a way to research, rate, review, and comment on individual brews; in many ways, it’s like Facebook for “Beer Scouts of America,” because an added benefit is that you can see what your friends are drinking and compare notes, while at the same time collecting “merit badges” based upon beer styles and locations. With our fondness to be on top, Untappd had to make checking into beers a bit competitive: it’s what drives us!  Because of the ability to rate each beer on a scale 1-5 (quarter increments also included) Untappd essentially keeps score as to what people think of every beer in the market. If you love craft beer and don’t have this app, you need to finish reading this article, and then install it on your smart phone: it’s the smart thing to do.

Using data collected from Untappd, we are doing a series of articles to determine who has the best ‘core beers’ in the Phoenix Valley, and at the end, determine who the fans ultimately feel have the best beers. For each individual category we will list the top 5 beers and where to find them. It should be noted that because of the ongoing ratings being inputted by craft beer fans, the numbers are likely to fluctuate moderately but they generally paint a fairly accurate picture of what people think. Also, every core IPA from every brewery in the Phoenix valley scored higher than 3.25 out of the max potential of 5, but we wanted to focus on the highest rated beers.

Top 5 Core IPAs in the Phoenix Valley: (Data Collected from Untappd December 1st, 2017)

Church Music – American IPA – 6.7% ABV
The Shop Beer Co – Tempe
3.87 Untappd Avg.
Description: American style IPA brewed with Huell Melon, Citra, Amarillo, and Idaho 7 Hops

Photo Credit: Tap That AZ Podcast

Wrenovation – American IPA – 7% ABV
Wren House Brewing Company – Phoenix
3.91 Untappd Avg.
Description: American IPA brewed with Amarillo and Mt. Hood hops

Photo Credit: Wren House Brewing Co.

Refuge – American IPA – 7.2% ABV
Arizona Wilderness Brewing Co. – Gilbert
3.92 Untappd Avg.
Description: American IPA brewed with Chinook, Simcoe, cascade and Columbus hops.

Photo credit: The Beer Connect

480G – American IPA – 8% ABV
The Beer Research Institute – Mesa
3.94 Untappd Avg.
Description: American IPA brewed with American 2 Row and crystal malts, dank hop combination, Simcoe and Amarillo for finishing and dry hopping.

Photo credit: Classy Alcoholic

Fatality – American IPA – 7.5% ABV
McFate Brewing Company – Scottsdale
4.02 Untappd Avg.
Description: American IPA brewed with Centennial, Columbus, chinook, Sorachi Ace, Citra, mosaic, and Simcoe hops.

Photo credit: Tap That AZ Podcast

There you have it, the top 5 IPAs in the Phoenix Valley based upon the drinking habits and palates of those who drink locally crafted beer in Phoenix. It’s not rocket science, its craft beer, and although beer profiling is subjective, and by no means discriminating, the numbers don’t lie. These beers are rated high because they are solid and the brewers who craft them are dedicated to making only the choicest beers for their local market. So, the next time you are out looking for a locally crafted IPA, be sure to pick up one of these, or all of them, because the numbers are in, the exit polls have been filed, and Phoenix has spoken: these are the best!

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