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Untappd 2020 Year in Review: Top Styles

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With 2020 coming to a close (thank goodness), we're taking some of the global stats across the entire platform to see what the world was drinking in 2020. This is the first post in our series of Untappd Year in Review for 2020. Today, we're taking a look the top 10 styles of 2020 based on total number of check-ins. Let's get into it!

10. Lager - Pale

The Euro Pale Lager is highlighted by a notable hop flavor, as well as a malty sweetness. With a low ABV (3% to 5%), this style makes it into the top 10 for 2020. This year, Birra Moretti was the most checked-in beer of the Lager - Pale style, which is popular all around the world. This style didn't move from 2019, coming in 10th place as well.

Birra Moretti L'Autentica / Ricetta Originale label

Birra Moretti L'Autentica / Ricetta Originale

Birra Moretti

Lager - Euro Pale

Total (?) 414,925

Unique (?) 300,477

4.6% ABV

12 IBU

(3.13)

271,535 Ratings

9. Belgian Tripel

Welcome to the top 10 list, Belgian Tripel! Last year, this style came in at number 19, making that a 10 spot increase in 2020. This style is complex, sometimes a mild spicy flavor characterizes this style. Tripels are often on the higher end of the ABV spectrum yet are approachable to many different palates. These beers are commonly bottle-conditioned and finish dry. This year's top beer of this style was Tripel Karmeliet by Brouwerij Bosteels.

Tripel Karmeliet label

Tripel Karmeliet

Brouwerij Bosteels

Belgian Tripel

Total (?) 698,559

Unique (?) 392,460

8.4% ABV

16 IBU

(4)

358,453 Ratings

8. IPA - Session / India Session Ale

Session IPAs are kettle hopped (for bitterness up front) and dry hopped (for flavor and aroma after the boil) using similar quantities and varieties as a standard American IPA. Traditional beers of this style range 5% ABV and below. This style took a bit of a tumble this year (#6 in 2019), with more and more New England IPAs added the mix. For 2020, the top beer of this style was All Day IPA from Founders Brewing Co.

All Day IPA label

All Day IPA

Founders Brewing Co.

IPA - Session / India Session Ale

Total (?) 1.26M+

Unique (?) 550,187

4.7% ABV

42 IBU

(3.71)

500,244 Ratings

7. Stout - Imperial / Double

The imperial stout is the strongest in alcohol and body of the stouts. Black in color, these beers typically have an extremely rich malty flavor and aroma with full, sweet malt character. In 2019, this style was in exactly the same spot, #7. Given the global pandemic, I'm surprised to see this style still in the top 10 as brewers have shifted to "easier" drinking styles to sell more beer as people have been watching their wallets on high priced stouts. The top beer of this style in 2020 is Bourbon County Brand Stout from Goose Island.

Bourbon County Brand Stout (2020) 14.6% label

Bourbon County Brand Stout (2020) 14.6%

Vintage of Bourbon County Brand Stout

Goose Island Beer Co.

Stout - Imperial / Double

Total (?) 40,965

Unique (?) 35,346

14.6% ABV

60 IBU

(4.47)

32,872 Ratings

6. Sour - Fruited

Fruited sours span effervescent American ales blended with heritage peaches, sour lagers punctuated by black currants, and blended blonde ales aged in wine barrels with berries and stone fruits. Sours are up this year (maybe because of our beer project with Dogfish Head, for "I Remember My First Check-in"), from #8 to #6 when comparing to 2019. As more people look for differences in flavor when it comes to beer, sours offer that, which gives diversity to a brewery's line up. Data shows that they are one of the most popular and up and coming styles outside of the IPAs & Pale Ales. In 2020, the top beer of this style was Vibrant P'ocean from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery.

Vibrant P'ocean label

Vibrant P'ocean

Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

Collaboration with Brouwerij Rodenbach

Sour - Fruited

Total (?) 27,255

Unique (?) 24,819

4.7% ABV

12 IBU

(3.47)

23,078 Ratings

5. IPA - Imperial / Double New England

Onto the top 5! Typically dominated by the IPA style, the Double New England IPA falls right in line. A 2x version of it's younger version, these beers pack tons of "juicy" flavor without the bitterness that are accustom to main IPAs. New England IPAs are one of the top styles that a majority of breweries are investing in. The top beer of this style was King Sue from Toppling Goliath Brewing Co.

King Sue label

King Sue

Toppling Goliath Brewing Co.

IPA - Imperial / Double New England

Total (?) 242,081

Unique (?) 136,017

7.8% ABV

100 IBU

(4.35)

127,154 Ratings

4. Pale Ale - American

An American interpretation of a classic English style, the American pale ale is characterized by floral, fruity, citrus-like, piney, resinous, or sulfur-like American-variety hop character, producing medium to medium-high hop bitterness, flavor and aroma. This has been one of the more stable beer styles since the start of brewing, most famously the Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada. In 2019, it had the same #4 spot. The top beer of this style in 2020 was in fact Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada!

Pale Ale label

Pale Ale

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Pale Ale - American

Total (?) 1.13M+

Unique (?) 533,230

5.6% ABV

38 IBU

(3.63)

475,009 Ratings

3. IPA - Imperial / Double

As IPAs have dominated the market, there is no surprise at number 3 with the larger version of the regular IPA. The Imperial India Pale Ale features high hop bitterness, flavor, and aroma. Hop character is fresh and evident from the utilization of any variety of hops. Last year this style also came in at number #2. There were over 34,000 different beers of this style checked in 2020. The top beer of this style in 2020 was Hopslam from Bell's Brewery.

Hopslam Ale (2020) label

Hopslam Ale (2020)

Vintage of Hopslam Ale

Bell's Brewery

IPA - Imperial / Double

Total (?) 44,816

Unique (?) 32,500

10% ABV

65 IBU

(4.26)

29,871 Ratings

2. IPA - New England

At number 2, no surprises here, is the New England IPA. It has taken the brewing world by storm over the last couple of years with insane growth. They are characterized by juicy, citrus, and floral flavors, with a more subtle and less piney hop taste than typical IPAs. In 2020, there were over 48,000 different beers of this style checked in, by 11,000 breweries. Crazy! The top beer of this style in 2020 was Hazy Little Thing by Sierra Nevada.

Hazy Little Thing label

Hazy Little Thing

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

IPA - New England

Total (?) 411,902

Unique (?) 277,064

6.7% ABV

35 IBU

(3.79)

254,199 Ratings

1. IPA - American

And finally number 1. This style is the staple of the brewing industry at this time. It's been number 1 on the list for the last 10 years of Untappd, and it's a beer style that is widely available and brewed. It makes it easier for consumers to grab onto it. This year, over 87,000 different IPAs were checked-in on Untappd, from over 21,000 different breweries. Even in a pandemic, IPAs seem to be the style of choice. The top beer of this style in 2020 was Punk IPA by BrewDog.

Punk IPA label

Punk IPA

BrewDog

IPA - American

Total (?) 960,206

Unique (?) 462,030

5.2% ABV

35 IBU

(3.74)

425,686 Ratings

Stay tuned for our next post as we dive into the top cities of 2020 with Untappd check-ins. What was your top style this year? Let us know in the comments below!

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