Raise Your Tinnies: Australia's Hottest 100 Craft Beers of 2023 Have Just Been Announced

For the second year in a row, Mountain Culture's Status Quo Pale Ale has taken out the GABS Hottest 100 Aussie Craft Beers poll.
Sarah Ward
Published on January 27, 2024

Winning the GABS Hottest 100 Aussie Craft Beers poll for 2023, Mountain Culture's Status Quo Pale Ale is living up to its name. The tipple from the New South Wales brewery in the Blue Mountains was also anointed 2022's top drop. So, from that ranking to the just-announced new countdown — which was unveiled on Saturday, January 27, 2024 — the existing state of affairs has indeed been maintained.

When the end of January rolls around in Australia, folks get a-counting — and brews sit alongside tunes. The nation loves working through the top 100 songs of the past year thanks to Triple J's huge annual music poll, and has for decades. And, it loves celebrating the beers that everyone is likely sipping while listening to that countdown, which is where GABS' ranking of Aussie craft beers has come in for 16 years now.

This yeasty poll does for beer what the other Hottest 100 does for bangers, and it loves repeat winners. In both 2020 and 2021, Canberra's Bentspoke Brewing Co did the honours with its Crankshaft American IPA. In 2022 and 2023, that brew came in third instead.

Mountain Culture also bested 2017 and 2018 winner Balter Brewing Company for the second year running, with its Balter XPA notching up second position in 2022 and 2023. And, it beat out Your Mates Brewing Co, which nabbed fourth place this year. In fifth: Bridge Road Brewers' Beechworth pale ale.

The rest of the top ten includes Gage Roads Brewing Co's Single Fin Summer Ale in sixth, Coopers Brewery's Original Pale Ale in seventh and Stone & Wood Brewing Co's Pacific Ale — the winner of the 2011, 20152016 and 2019 polls; 2020's second-place getter; and 2021 and 2022's fourth beer on the list — in eighth.  Young Henrys sits ninth with Newtowner, while Pirate Life Brewing came in tenth with its South Coast pale ale.

Mountain Culture, which is run by husband-and-wife team DJ & Harriet McCready, also placed 22nd with its Cult IPA, 41st with its Be Kind Rewind NEIPA and 46th with its Summer Pale Ale. Obviously, it made more than a little company. 2023's hottest 100 was whittled down from 436 vote-receiving breweries and 1877 of their beers.

From that hefty list of contenders, 63 different breweries scored a spot on the full list of 100 brews. That covers 27 beers from NSW, 24 from Queensland and 22 from Victoria, plus 11 from Western Australia, and eight each from the ACT and South Australia. 2023's rundown saw quite the turnover in tipples, too, with 28 of 2022's top brews dropping out and being replaced in 2023's rundown.

Held by GABS — or the annual festival also known as the Great Australian Beer SpecTAPular, which returns for 2023 this May and June — the countdown is a people's-choice poll decided by booze lovers around the country.

If you're thinking "less background, more beer", here's what you've been waiting for: the rundown of the best beverages from the past year that just keep tempting tastebuds. Working your way through the whole 100 isn't just a great way to show your appreciation for locally made brews, either — consider it research for the 2024 countdown.

GABS Hottest 100 Aussie Craft Beers of 2023:

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

For more information about the GABS Hottest 100 Aussie Craft Beers of 2023, head to the GABS website.

Published on January 27, 2024 by Sarah Ward
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