Rather than rank teams based on how good they are at basketball, the first three weeks of our Euroleague Power Rankings will be all about the good life. This week, we rank each Euroleague team by beer.
What have you done to have me and a bunch of other journalists insult your intelligence? We all know we don’t want to but power rankings are basically demanded from week 1. Fortunately I’m the boss around here so I’m instituting a policy for our Euroleague power rankings. For week 1, 2, and 3, I’m not going to rank the teams. Let’s give them three games to work out where they stand.
Instead we’re ranking on a different criteria that may help improve your game-day experience. First up, we’re ranking by beer.
1. Brose Baskets Bamberg – Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier
Probably the only time a Bundesliga team will top these rankings for the foreseeable future but damn this beer is awesome. A mild aroma of bacon but the flavour is smoked awesomeness. This alone makes the trip to Bamberg worthwhile.
2. Montepaschi Siena – Bastarda Rossa
Plenty of creativity in this one, elements of smoked meat in the flavour and a somewhat pinkish hue. Yup, that’ll do nicely.
3. Saski Baskonia – Pagoa Orhi
Unsurprisingly one of the most innovative regions in the world for food is making strides on the beer front. Pagoa Orhi is a pilsner with hints of caramel to help punch up its flavour.
4. Olympiacos Piraeus – Peiraiki Pale Ale
I did not know there was a microbrewery in Piraeus. Producing a strong IPA, Peiraiki offer a nice break from the streams of lager on offer in most cities.
5. Zalgiris Kaunas – Volfas Engelman Imperial Porteris
A Baltic Porter, this beer goes down easy but still has flavour. Elements of smoke and toffee to the aroma.
6. Anadolu Efes – Efes Dark
I’m not wild on their pilsen but their dark has a solid body. Basically think of the difference between their big names in games when it mattered and when it didn’t last season.
7. FC Bayern – Hofbrau
I’m sure there will be cries of other beers being more worthy but this is the beer most associated with the city. It’s a solid lager, better than most.
8. Crvena Zvevda – Lav Crveno
This red is pretty average but given some of the local options on this list, it rates highly amongst Euroleague beers.
9. Lietuvos Rytas – Tauras Taurusis
A rather floral taste on what is an otherwise conventional lager. Tends to be surprise tourists who expect much worse.
10. EA7 Armani – Menabrea 150 Anniversario Amber
Quite the opposite of what Milan’s sponsors go for, this beer does fine on taste but generally looks awful. Still, you are more likely to care about the former.
11. Strasbourg – Kronenbourg 1664
France isn’t known for its beer but Kronenbourg is a more than passable lager which fits the so over-rated it’s under-rated category.
12. Maccabi Tel Aviv – Tempo Gold Star
We enter the local swill category here with Israel’s most popular beer. From here on down, you’ve been warned.
13. Stelmet Zielona Gora – Debowe Mocne
Strength is the sole selling point of this beer, at 7 per cent it packs a punch for an otherwise conventional lager. The stronger alcohol content means that, for better or worse, it has more flavour than the beers below it.
14. FC Barcelona – Estrella Damm
A perfectly inoffensive lager. Not one you’ll be looking for while eating as it lacks character but grand for the end of a day.
15. Panathinaikos – Fix Hellas
A Greek favourite, Fix’s weaknesses its lack of body and really any flavour of note.
16. Real Madrid – San Miguel Especial
Whatever you do, don’t let it hit room temperature. It’s fine chilled but tastes foul when on your table for more than a few minutes.
17. Budivelnik Kiev – Slavutych Shato El’
This red beer is the best of what most reviewers consider to be a desperately bad lot amongst the Slavutych Shato brand.
18. Partizan – Jelen Pivo
A weak aroma and a disappearing flavour, yup I feel bad for giving their city rivals the better beer.
19. Unicaja Malaga – Victoria Malaga 1928
Oh boy we are in hardcore swill territory here. We’ll let this harsh reviewer from RateBeer sum it up “Thin, watery and weak in taste. Worst Spanish beer I have ever tasted.”
Umm yeah just more versions of Efes unfortunately. The market for beer is in the developmental stage, to put it kindly.
22. CSKA Moscow
22. Lokomotiv Kuban
I couldn’t find a single beer reasonably geographically close to these three. Admittedly there’s a good chance I’m wrong with Nanterre but Russia’s beer industry is in dire need of resurrection.