So I thought to join the blogging world to sit high on my cloud and drop some beer knowledge on everyone. I did not, however, figure out how I would convey my disjointed set of thoughts: fact and opinion into anything worthwhile.
Hence, I needs me a ratings system. Restaurants, bars and stores alike there is only one way to judge and that is on variety. I am a big believer in drinking regionally followed closely by quality brewers. I also shun most imports simply because I think the long shipping time hurts quality and I find that most types (Belgian possibly excluded) have been recreated here with as good or better results.
Bad: Your establishment only carries what is known as BMC products: Bud, Miller or Coors. It is the typical mass-market stuff which, while appealing to some, leaves much to be desired for the beer snobs.
Poor: Your establishment carries a well rounded BMC complement plus some 'imports' owned by the biggies: InBev, DiaGeo, etc. It is pretty much all lagers with a few 'ales' thrown in like Bass or Guiness. Hopefully you at least covered one stout and one wheat amongst your selection.
Acceptable: Your establishment in addition to having way too many BMC products and big name imports at least carries a big name craft-level brewer. It is probably Boston Beer Company (Sam Adams) but at least should be something a beer snob can down.
Good: Your establishment has moved a little beyond Sammy and imports as qualifying for a well rounded beer complement. You have picked up some of the more common craft beers out there. You carry one or more of the following: Boulevard, St Louis (Schlafly), Goose Island, Spoetzel (Shiner) as well as possibly dipping into putting one or more of their seasonals (including Sam Adams) in botles or on draft (bonus points).
Excellent: Your establishment carries beer most of the population has never heard of. The beer ranges a might gamut from stouts and porters to india pale ales. Your wheats come in multiple styles from hefewizens to wit beers and aren't made by BMC. You are the mecca for all that is beery in Springfield.
So there you have it. It is totally subjective with a few measurable metrics in there. I will try and highlight the best choices at places I try but I may miss stuff, I may be drunk and I may not hit the restaurant, bar or store you frequent. Word is bond.