If you're into the craft beer thing, it's near impossible not to feel like you're missing out on some of the best beers, based solely on those pesky geographic constraints. There are so many -- like, SO many -- regions bursting with amazing breweries in the US and around the world, but with five major parent companies dominating national distribution, it's hard to find those smaller, indepedent craft beers unless you're within a stone's throw of the brewery itself. The FOMO associated with not being able to smell and taste all that interesting beer is very real. So then, barring a never-ending road trip from brewery to brewery, how might one get their hands on all these great indy craft beers?
My answer is beer boxes. Subscriptions to anything and everything have become a commerce darling for us millennials and Gen Zs (not saying which I am) for a few reasons: For one, food and drink subscriptions introduce us to some of the best stuff including but not limited to hot sauces, and even that we may not be exposed to otherwise. Another is that these clever food clubs and booze subscriptions support small businesses, increasing their reach and turning folks on the other side of the country -- or world -- onto what they're doing and making. Monthly beer clubs and subscriptions are no exception and most of these craft beer clubs send microbrewery offerings that you won't find in the local beer shop, no matter how expansive their selection., , ,
Whether it's a gift for that craft beer lover in your orbit or you yourself are the beer enthusiast and want to try new, rare and hard-to-find brewery offerings, look no further than a independent beer club or subscription box. It's the best way to try beers you can't find in your local shop without having to zigzag the nation yourself.
Oh, and you can get awfully specific with these beer clubs too, so any craft-beer-glugging, "I wish this IPA were hoppier" suds fiend will appreciate the right subscription to a niche beer club, designed especially for beer nerds with finicky palates. Whether you love extra-hoppy IPAs, lager, ale, sours or silky porters -- or you just crave a little beer merch -- there's a beer subscription teeming with carefully selected brews in a range of styles and made by the best brewmasters in the biz.
So what are you waiting for? Every day you're not signed up for one of these independent beer clubs is a day you could be missing out on the best beer you've never tried. Unless, of course, youand -- but we've .
Read on for our picks for the best beer subscription box for every type of drinker in 2021.
Craft Beer Club is arguably the most popular beer subscription box out there for the craft beer enthusiast and for good reason. It sends out monthly shipments of exceptional craft beers from around the country. Many of the craft brews have limited distribution, meaning a subscription to CBC might be your only shot of tasting those specialty brews. They also put a premium on fresh beer, with their selected breweries making a fresh batch just before boxes go out. The Craft Beer Club is $43 a month and features 12 carefully curated and hard-to-get beers in each box shipment.
If hops make you happy, this is the monthly club for you (or another hoppy beer lover you'd like to treat). The HopHeads Beer Club sends three different hops-centric beers -- four of each -- every month so you can get your fill. While this is, unsurprisingly, heavy on IPAs of various styles, it also makes room for hoppy pale ale and red ales. These aren't just super bitter hop-you-over-the-head beers though; the club also spotlights "the many hop flavors and aromas available to today's brewers amidst the ever-expanding supply of new hop varieties," and includes imports as well as American selections. Pricing starts at $35 per month for three months.
Some of the beer subscription boxes on this list don't leave much of the beer selection up to you, but not so with Beer Drop. This beer delivery box startup offers different plans, but with all of them you can select the specific beer styles that go into your monthly shipments. That includes IPA beer, fruity-forward beers, Belgian beer and others. Monthly drops of microbrewery offerings start at $39 per month and your subscription can be canceled anytime. Also notable: The Beer Drop brews are all canned, so you'll never have to worry about a broken bottle.
This club dates back to 1994 and features high-quality, rare beer and award-winning artisanal beers from around the country. Each month, a team of experts tastes over 500 brews in consideration for that month's shipment, with only 20% of those beers making the cut. This is the perfect beer subscription box for a true beer snob working with a hypersensitive palate. In addition to the US Microbrewed Beer Club, there are four more membership options, including an International Beer Club starting at $30 per month plus shipping.
The Rare Beer Club is the most selective of them all, featuring only two 750ml bottles of beer a month. It sends two separate styles per month and no two months will see the same bottle picks at your door (unless you request or reorder). Don't be discouraged by the limited choices; it's quality you're here for and these beers are carefully chosen. You have three buying options: two 750ml bottles per month ($39 plus shipping), four 750ml bottles per month ($55 plus shipping) or six 750ml bottles per month ($73 plus shipping). Often these beers use rare production techniques and ingredients, like aging through blending or in bourbon and cedar barrels. Plus, you'll get super-rare brews from all over the world, including from up-and-coming breweries in Brazil, Japan and Scandinavia.
The original monthly beer club, founded in 1992, Beer Across America is dedicated to highlighting great craft brews from across the country. Each beer shipment includes 12 bottles -- four varieties of beer from two craft breweries per month, curated by a panel of beer experts. As with many such clubs, you'll also receive a monthly newsletter with more information about each featured Beer Across America brewery and tasting notes for each bottle. Plans start at $40 per month with free shipping, making it one of the least expensive options on this list, and you can cancel at any time.
Starting with the second shipment, you can review each month's beer selections. If you see something you don't want, you can skip that shipment and wait for different beer next month -- you'll still receive the total number of shipments you signed up for. You get a bonus bar-style beer opener too.
Each box features merchandise like T-shirts, mugs and sunglasses from one amazing craft brewery every month, plus optional extras like beer-infused baked goods and beer-scented candles. With three subscription levels, starting at $21 per month, this is a great way to immerse yourself in the creative world of craft brewing and appreciate one brand at a time. It even offers a beer-themed box for your pet.