Dennis Hopper has his views on the matter (content warning!). The boys over at Fraters Libertas have extensive listings and rankings on their website. My dad always said his favorite was something called Alpirsbacher Klosterbräu, which he always claimed was made by monks in the Black Forest. It turns out that this apparently is true, but I don't know enough German to read their website. Today I'm enjoying a Harp Lager, an ostensibly Irish beer made by Guinness but apparently brewed these days in New Brunswick. Beer is pretty darned well universal.
Most people have a favorite beer. When my friends and I were coming of age, the battle for loyalty usually was between Old Style and Miller High Life, two fairly cheap beers that were generally acceptable, especially in the mass quantities we favored in those days. If money was tight, there were other, less palatable alternatives like Blatz, which usually retailed for about $4 a case on those days. And you got what you paid for. As bad as Blatz was, there were worse things to drink. Like Carling's Black Label, which was affectionately known as "Black Flag," or the classic bad beer, Schaefer, which made no bones about its station by dubbing itself "the one beer to have when you're having more than one." Although both Black Label and Schaefer were more prevalent on the East Coast, you could get them in Wisconsin. Not that you'd ordinarily want to. Sometimes we also favored other local brews like Point or Huber, but not as often. Just about every town in Wisconsin had a brewery at one point -- my hometown brewery made a beer called Adler Brau, but they went out of business in the early 70s, so I never got to try it.
These days there are a lot of excellent beers available. I can go over to St. Anthony Village Liquor and choose from an amazing array of beers. I buy a six-pack every once in a while and experiment. One of the best local brewers is Surly Brewing, which makes a really good, hop-intense beer called Furious, along with the excellent Cynic Ale. It's neat to have the options we do today, even though it usually takes me a couple of months to go through a six pack these days.
So if you are a beer drinker, what are you having these days?