Philly beer Twitter power rankings: 10 essential follows

It isn’t easy to stay on top of all the shifting options and beermakers, not to mention Pa.’s unusual beverage laws. Tweets to the rescue.

A glass of Pliny the Younger at Monk's Cafe

A glass of Pliny the Younger at Monk's Cafe

Danya Henninger

In the late ‘90s, when the independent brewing boom was getting started, Philadelphia had one of the most impressive beer scenes in the nation…if not the most impressive. Over the past two decades, things have only gotten better.

It’s not just that the region is home to dozens of great breweries, from stalwarts like Yards, Victory and Dogfish Head to a new crop of boundary-pushers (Tired Hands, Forest & Main, St. Benjamin’s, Crime & Punishment, many more). Philly drinkers also get access to more varieties of beer from more parts of the world than just about anywhere else. Cantillon Grand Cru? Russian River Pliny the Younger? Check and check. Plus, just about every non-chain establishment in the city, from dives to fancy restaurants, offers a varied selection that rotates frequently.

Staying on top of all the shifting options and breweries, not to mention Pa.’s unusual beverage laws — legal 12-packs? Gasp! — isn’t easy. Twitter to the rescue. Here are the top 10 accounts you should be following if you want to keep up with all things beer.

1) @phillybeerweek

Been tweeting since: November 2008

No. of followers: 23.4k

No. of tweets: 9,225

Why it made this list: Each year, PBW (aka the first festival of its kind in the nation) draws more than 60,000 people to hundreds of beer events in the area, with an economic impact estimated near $20 million. But the nonprofit organization isn’t just about one week — it’s a yearlong effort to promote everything great about beer-drinking in Philly. Follow for heads up on events, links to relevant news and retweets from the whole Philly beer field.

Sample tweet: 

2) @phillytapfinder

Been tweeting since: June 2010

No. of followers: 11.8k

No. of tweets: 25.6k

Why it made this list: Over the past five and a half years, Queen Village resident Jared Littman’s hobby side project has become an essential part of the local beer landscape. Bar owners count on the site to let drinkers know what’s on their ever-rotating taps, and this account shouts out special rarities and the best overall lineups. It’s a great place to keep up with hot beer events around town, too.

Sample tweet: 

3) @beer_radar

Been tweeting since: December 2008

No. of followers: 5,139

No. of tweets: 2,528

Why it made this list: Don Russell is unarguably the beer guru of Philadelphia. Otherwise known as Joe Sixpack, for his Daily News column of the same name, the man is a walking encyclopedia of knowledge about the beer and brewing world, not only in Philly but around the globe. Beer recs, news articles and off-the-cuff opinions fill his feed, along with invitations to attend his monthly beer and yoga sessions in Roxborough.

Sample tweet: 

4) @phillybeerscene

Been tweeting since: May 2009

No. of followers: 20.2k

No. of tweets: 11.1k

Why it made this list: In an age when many print media orgs are gasping for breath, Mat Falco started his own glossy magazine and turned it into an institution. [Disclaimer: this writer is a columnist at said mag.] Some articles aren’t posted online till months after issue date, but they’re all still relevant, so watch for the links if you want to read in-depth coverage of our growing scene. On a daily basis, the feed presents a steady drumbeat of great beer happenings throughout the city and suburbs.

Sample tweet: 

5) @lewbryson

Been tweeting since: May 2009

No. of followers: 7,271

No. of tweets: 9,822

Why it made this list: Lew Bryson is known as much for for his quick and incisive commentary as for his hearty and sincere belly laugh. After a couple of years as editor at at Whiskey Advocate, this Pennsylvania native is back to beer full time, which means he’s free again to unleash his invective at the absurdity of the PLCB, as well as hold forth on the state of brewing in the U.S.. Lots of untappd checkins show up on his feed, but if there’s anyone whose drinking habits you want to track, it’s Lew.

Sample tweet: 

6) @yardsbrew

Been tweeting since: May 2009

No. of followers: 16.4k

No. of tweets: 6,129

Why it made this list: Philly’s oldest independent brewery is as active and in love with its hometown as ever (it’s searching for a new, larger facility, but is determined to stay within the city limits). Follow for great beer photos and GIFs, info on the many events held at the Delaware Ave. tasting room and updates on the new philanthropic #BrewUntoOthers campaign.

Sample tweet: 

7) @beerlass

Been tweeting since: March 2008

No. of followers: 5,764

No. of tweets: 13k

Why it made this list: Way back before she was MidAtlantic sales manager for Allagash (rough job, but somebody’s gotta drink all that White), Suzy Woods had one of Philly’s earliest beer blogs — one that encouraged women to get involved. She’s still on top of all things brew in the city, so follow for things to do, where to drink, what to sip and lots of pretty pics of pints.

Sample tweet: 

8) @NoddingHeadBrew

Been tweeting since: January 2010

No. of followers: 5,183

No. of tweets: 5,351

Why it made this list: If you love Philly sports as much as you love Philly beer, this account is an essential follow. Curt Decker is currently in the process of rebooting his brewpub, which closed in late 2014 after nearly 15 years, but he’s still making beer (in conjunction with PBC) and also on top of all things brew in town. His sniping comments on the state of our professional teams are just a bonus.

Sample tweet: 

9) @monkscafephilly

Been tweeting since: October 2011

No. of followers: 844

No. of tweets: 602

Why it made this list: The account for Philadelphia’s world-famous beer emporium has been around for several years, but it only recently started being actively updated. It’s worth noting, since the mind behind the tweets is the same person in charge of @FederalDonuts. As with that ultra-popular feed, expect amusing insights, pics and jokes from around the Twitters mixed in with useful and relevant event- and beer-related info.

Sample tweet: 

10) @phillyhboutlet

Been tweeting since: October 2011

No. of followers: 1,412

No. of tweets: 2,594

Why it made this list: You don’t necessarily have to buy beer at distributors and bars — you can make your own. Get tips on how and why you’d want to do that from this homebrew shop with locations in Kensington and West Philadelphia, plus keep up with the goings on at the Philly Homebrew Club, which regularly holds meetings at the store.

Sample tweet: 

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Dogfish Head