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The 11 Best Beers Brewed This Year

By Justin Kennedy

It’s a tough job, but our beer expert tasted hundreds of options all across the U.S. to crown these cans and bottles in a league all their own.

Oxbow Sap Haus

Style: Smoked dark lager, 7% ABV
Brewery Location: Newcastle, Maine

On the complete opposite end of the spectrum from Nebo is this dark and smoky lager from Maine’s perennially excellent Oxbow Brewing. The brewery, nestled on a small working farm in rural Newcastle, takes inspiration for Sap Haus from the famed smoked lagers of Bamberg, Germany, and infuses some provincial flavor from locally sourced Maine maple syrup. The result is an intoxicating blend of campfire, caramel, and toffee flavors with an underlying earthiness reminiscent of a stroll through the woods on a bleak fall evening.

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