Wyoming named one of the best states for beer drinkers - KOTA Territory News

Wyoming named one of the best states for beer drinkers

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Jim Lyon and his son are catching up over a beer at Sheridan's Black Tooth Brewery.

"It's delightful. I enjoy it very much. It's got a nice taste to it," said Lyon, who is visiting his son from Mineral, Virginia.

The flavor of the beers here, and the increasing number of local breweries is giving Wyoming some bragging rights.

Fool.com, a financial services website, ranked the Cowboy State third in the country for beer drinkers, behind only Montana and Wisconsin.

"When we opened three years ago, we were the eighth functioning brewery in the state of Wyoming. There are currently 23. Gillette has two new breweries, Buffalo has a new brewery, there was a second brewery that opened in Sheridan recently, and we're excited for those guys as well," said Black Tooth Brewery co-founder Tim Barnes.

Barnes says more people in Wyoming want locally produced brews.

"The demand for craft beer and the demand for small, local beer has been significant across the state of Wyoming. We've experienced it," said Barnes.

The high number of local breweries helped Wyoming's ranking, as did having the country's lowest beer tax.

"Malt beverage wholesale tax, that's certainly been favorable for the state of Wyoming. We hope that continues. It's a favorable business climate. The state legislature does a great job of setting the tone for the economy," said Barnes.

But for casual beer drinkers like Lyon, it's about more than economic factors.

"It's a congenial environment of people. They enjoy each other's company anyway, so beer is just an extension of the personality of Wyoming people," said Lyon.

South Dakota came in at number seven and Nebraska was ranked tenth in the survey.

You can find the survey's full results at http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2014/03/16/the-best-us-states-for-beer-lovers-youll-never-gue.aspx#commentsBoxAnchor.

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