Best craft beers in australia top 3

100 Best Craft Beers in Australia to Drink in 2024

There’s nothing quite like a good clash of passionfruit and hops bursting through your palate. In fact, according to that one craft beer wanker friend everyone seems to have, it’s a near-biblical experience. Sure, not everyone is intoxicated by a Double Vanilla Custard Pancake Imperial Nitro Thickshake IPA (that’s a real thing), but you can’t deny the craft beer market has exploded Down Under, and thanks must go to GABS. The almanac of all that is hazy, pale and pacific, the GABS Craft Beer poll is renowned for unearthing the very best beers you’ve never heard of and in 2024, the list delivered in spades.

The results came in after a lengthy polling process that saw tens of thousands of Aussies register to vote. According to GABS, an incredible 436 breweries and a whopping 1,877 different beers attracted votes.

Despite firmly east-coast flavour, the battle between the states was a hotly contested one. Specifically, NSW set the bar at 27, followed by Queensland with 24. Victoria earned 22 places, Western Australia 11, ACT 8, and SA matched its efforts with 8 entries. Best of all, a record-equaling 63 breweries made the list this year. But while Hazy and Tropical dominated the list, the GABS Hottest 100 Craft Beer poll also ushered in a new era for non-alcoholic brews, with Heaps Normal’s Quiet XPA coming in at 32 in the rankings. Let’s take a quick look at the top 3 before we get into the complete list.

Best Craft Beers in Australia: Top 3 Detailed

In a not-so-surprising result, the Blue Mountains firmed as the nation’s premier craft beer spot with local brewery Mountain Culture Beer Co’s Status Quo Pale Ale voted Australia’s favourite Craft Beer for the second year in a row. The top three craft beers in Australia remained the same this year with Gold Coast’s Balter XPA, a two-time winner in 2017-18, claiming second again, while Bentspoke’s Crankshaft American IPA rounded out the top three for the seventh year in a row.

“This year’s winners are an excellent representation of the quality craft beer being made around the country. It’s clear pale ale remains a favourite, with Aussies voting for solid, consistent brews that are true to their style,” said Head of First Choice Liquor Market, Michael Bornholdt.

Mountain Culture Beer Co Status Quo Pale Ale | Image: Mountain Culture Beer Co
Mountain Culture Beer Co Status Quo Pale Ale | Image: Mountain Culture Beer Co

1. Mountain Culture Beer Co Status Quo Pale Ale

The two-time GABS Hottest 100 Champion, Status Quo Pale Ale arrives directly from the Blue Mountains’ first brewpub. Brewed by the husband and wife team, DJ & Harriet McCready, the juicy New England Pale Ale captured some serious attention from beer lovers, nabbing the top spot for the second year in a row. The drop is designed for fans of hoppy flavours, with a decidedly more tropical finish than the brewery’s other releases.

“Status Quo encapsulates so much of what we are about,” said co-founder Harriet McCready. “It was one of our first ever brews on our original brew kit in the early days of our Katoomba brewpub. We called it Status Quo because we wanted to create a beer that set our benchmark for our standard of brewing, so it’s pretty cool that it’s the beer that won!”

Brand: Mountain Culture Beer Co
Release: Status Quo Pale Ale
Region: Blue Mountains
Style: Pale Ale
ABV: 5.2%

Balter XPA | Image: Balter
Balter XPA | Image: Balter

2. Balter XPA

Two-time previous champion, Balter Brewing was pipped at the post this year, but its iconic XPA still managed to score some major accolades. Legends Mick Fanning, Joel Parkinson and Scott Hargrave’s fan favourite finished runner-up for the third successive year, courtesy of its tropical and floral aromatics, not to mention the fruity palette.

Brand: Balter Brewing
Release: XPA
Region: Queensland
Style: Extra Pale Ale
ABV: 5.0%

Bentspoke Crankshaft American IPA | Image: Bentspoke Brewing
BentSpoke Crankshaft American IPA | Image: Bentspoke Brewing

3. Bentspoke Crankshaft IPA

After taking out top place in 2021, BentSpoke finished third for the second year in a row. The Crankshaft American IPA scored major points for its familiar West Coast IPA finish, however, there were some nice additions. The beer is revered for its floral nose, alongside bold notes of citrus and pine.

Brand: Bentspoke
Release: Crankshaft American IPA
Region: Canberra
Style: India Pale Ale
ABV: 5.8%

Best Craft Beers in Australia: Complete List

Here’s a look at the complete GABS Hottest 100 list of best craft beers:

  1. Mountain Culture Beer Co: Status Quo Pale Ale – Hazy /NSW
  2. Balter Brewing: XPA Pale Ale /QLD
  3. BentSpoke Brewing Co: Crankshaft IPA – American /ACT
  4. Your Mates Brewing Co: Larry Pale Ale – Australian /QLD
  5. Bridge Road Brewers: Beechworth Pale Ale – Pale Ale /VIC
  6. Gage Roads Brewing Co: Single Fin Blonde – Golden Ale /WA
  7. Coopers Brewery: Original Pale Ale Pale Ale – Australian /SA
  8. Stone & Wood Brewing Co: Pacific Ale Pale Ale – Australian /NSW
  9. Young Henrys: Newtowner Pale Ale – Australian /NSW
  10. Pirate Life Brewing: South Coast Pale Ale – American /SA
  11. Philter Brewing: XPA Pale Ale – XPA (Extra Pale Ale) /NSW
  12. Black Hops Brewing: G.O.A.T. IPA – New England /QLD
  13. Little Creatures: Pale Ale Pale Ale – American /WA
  14. Beerfarm: Royal Haze IPA – Hazy /WA
  15. Capital Brewing Co: Coast Ale – California Common /ACT
  16. Range Brewing: Disco Pale Ale – Hazy /QLD
  17. 4 Pines Brewing Company: Pacific Ale Pale Ale – Australian /NSW
  18. 10 Toes Brewery: Pipeline Pale Ale – Australian /QLD
  19. The Grifter Brewing Co: Grifter Pale Ale – Australian /NSW
  20. Rocky Ridge Brewing Co: Jindong Juicy Pale Ale – Hazy /WA
  21. Coopers Brewery: Sparkling Ale Pale Ale – Australian /SA
  22. Mountain Culture Beer Co: Cult IPA IPA – New England /NSW
  23. Balter Brewing: Eazy Hazy Pale Ale – Hazy /QLD
  24. Stomping Ground Brewing Co: Gipps St Pale Ale – Pale Ale /VIC
  25. Moffat Beach Brewing Co: Passenger Pale Ale – Pale Ale /QLD
  26. Mountain Goat Beer: GOAT Very Enjoyable Beer Lager – Pale /VIC
  27. Better Beer: Zero Carb Lager – Australian Pilsner /NSW
  28. Blackflag Brewing: Rage Juicy Pale – Pale Ale /QLD
  29. Heads Of Noosa Brewing Co: Japanese Style Lager Lager – Pale /QLD
  30. Blackman’s Brewery: Juicy Banger IPL Lager – Hoppy /VIC
  31. Green Beacon Brewing Co: Wayfarer Tropical Pale Ale – Pale Ale /QLD
  32. Heaps Normal: Quiet XPA – Pale Ale /ACT
  33. KAIJU! Beer: KRUSH! Tropical Pale Ale – Pale Ale /VIC
  34. CBCo Brewing: Pale Ale Pale Ale – Australian /VIC
  35. Matso’s Broome Brewery: Mango Beer – Fruit Beer /WA
  36. Feral Brewing Co: Biggie Juice IPA – Hazy /WA
  37. Hawkers Beer: West Coast IPA IPA – American /VIC
  38. Bright Brewery: Alpine Lager Lager – Pale /VIC
  39. Brick Lane Brewing Co: One Love Pale Ale Pale Ale – American /VIC
  40. One Drop Brewing Co: We Jammin’ Sour – Kettle Sour /NSW
  41. Mountain Culture Beer Co: Be Kind Rewind IPA – New England /NSW
  42. Balter Brewing: Hazy IPA – Hazy /QLD
  43. BentSpoke Brewing Co: Barley Griffin Pale Ale – Australian /ACT
  44. Capital Brewing Co: Capital XPA Pale Ale – Australian /ACT
  45. Balter Brewing: Cerveza Lager – Hoppy /QLD
  46. Mountain Culture Beer Co: Summer Pale Ale Pale Ale – Hazy /NSW
  47. James Squire: One Fifty Lashes Pale Ale – Australian /NSW
  48. Your Mates Brewing Co: Sally IPA – Australian /QLD
  49. Gage Roads Brewing Co: Side Track All Day XPA – Pale Ale /WA
  50. Little Bang Brewing Co: Sun Bear Pale Ale – Hazy /SA
  51. Hop Nation Brewing Co: Rattenhund Classic Pilsner – Lager /VIC
  52. Hiker Brewing Co: Cloudscapes IPA – Hazy /QLD
  53. Bodriggy Brewing Company: Speccy Juice IPA – Session /VIC
  54. Akasha Brewing Co: Super Chill Pacific Ale Pale Ale – Australian /NSW
  55. Hop Nation Brewing Co: J-Juice Hazy IPA IPA – Hazy /VIC
  56. Range Brewing: Lights + Music IPA – Imperial /QLD
  57. Seeker Brewing: Mystic NEIPA IPA – New England /NSW
  58. Heads Of Noosa Brewing Co: Black Japanese Lager Lager – Dark /QLD
  59. White Rabbit: Dark Ale Lager – Dark /VIC
  60. Bridge Road Brewers: Bling IPA IPA – English /VIC
  61. Coopers Brewery: Australian Lager Lager – Pale /SA
  62. Grifter Brewing Co: Serpents Kiss – Fruit Beer /NSW
  63. Dainton Beer: Blood Orange NEIPA IPA – Rye /VIC
  64. Moon Dog Craft Brewery: Old Mate Pale Ale – American /VIC
  65. Hawke’s Brewing: Patio Pale Pale Ale – American /NSW
  66. Shout Brewing Co: Mullet Pale Ale Pale Ale – American /NSW
  67. Modus Brewing: Modus Cerveza Lager – Pale /NSW
  68. Deeds Brewing: Juice Train IPA – New England /VIC
  69. Coopers Brewery: XPA Pale Ale – American /SA
  70. Kosciuszko Brewing Co: Kosciuszko Pale Ale Pale Ale – American /NSW
  71. Black Hops Brewing: East Coast Haze Pale Ale – Hazy /QLD
  72. Balter Brewing: Captain Sensible Pale Ale – American /QLD
  73. 4 Pines Brewing Company: Japanese Lager Lager – Pale /NSW
  74. Stone & Wood Brewing Co: Hinterland Hazy Pale Ale – Pale Ale-Hazy /NSW
  75. BentSpoke Brewing Co: Sprocket IPA – American /ACT
  76. Capital Brewing Co: Hang Loose Juice Hazy IPA IPA – Hazy /ACT
  77. Little Creatures: Rogers Amber/Red – American /WA
  78. Sunday Road Brewing: Cryotherapy IPA – Hazy /NSW
  79. Rocky Ridge Brewing Co: Rock Candy – Fruit Beer /WA
  80. Margaret River Beer Co: In The Pines IPA – Hazy /WA
  81. Big Shed Brewing Concern: Boozy Fruit IPA – New England /SA
  82. Blackflag Brewing: Affinity Tropical Pale Pale Ale – Australian /QLD
  83. Lord Nelson Brewery Hotel: Three Sheets Pale Ale – Australian /NSW
  84. Brouhaha Brewery: Strawberry Rhubarb Sour Sour – Kettle Sour /QLD
  85. Helios Brewing Co: Dionysus Oat Cream DIPA IPA – Oat Cream /QLD
  86. Banks Brewing: Cake Eater IPA – Oat Cream /VIC
  87. Coopers Brewery: Best Extra Stout Stout – Extra /SA
  88. 4 Pines Brewing Company: Hazy Pale Ale Pale Ale – Hazy /NSW
  89. Fixation Brewing Co: IPA IPA – American /VIC
  90. Little Creatures: Little Hazy Lager Lager – Hoppy /WA
  91. Bad Shepherd Brewing Co: Peanut Butter Porter – Porter /VIC
  92. CBCo Brewing: IPA IPA – Australian /VIC
  93. Yulli’s Brews: Amanda Mandarin IPA IPA – American /NSW
  94. Stone & Wood Brewing Co: Cloud Catcher Pale Ale – Australian /NSW
  95. Moffat Beach Brewing Co: Moff’s Summer Ale IPA – Session /QLD
  96. Capital Brewing Co: Trail Pale Ale Pale Ale – American /ACT
  97. Young Henrys: Hazy Pale Ale Pale Ale – Hazy /NSW
  98. Wolf Of The Willows Brewing: Wolf PUP Hazy Pale Ale Pale Ale – Hazy /VIC
  99. Range Brewing: Dripping In Green – Citra IPA – Hazy /QLD
  100. Your Mates Brewing Co: Tilly – Ginger/Spiced Beer /QLD

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Nick Hall is an award-winning journalist and the current Editor-in-Chief of Man of Many. With an extensive background in the media industry, he specialises in feature writing, lifestyle and entertainment content. Nick is a former Mumbrella Publish Awards ‘Editor of the Year’ and B&T's ‘Best of the Best – Journalist’ category winner.

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