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Jan 14, 2008 11:54 AM

Fat Tire Beer

I tried this over the holidays in Chicago and really liked it. Really nice, crisp amber. I came across it again when I was in Des Moines last week. I haven't seen it (or even heard of it) on the East Coast. Wondering if there are distributors that would carry a small microbrew that seems to be regional to the Mid-west/Colorado. Maybe Total Wine in DE?

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  1. I looked for this at Total Wine in Claymont, but it is not in stock or on their beer list. ( I had it in Arizona and loved it, along with their 1554 Ale. If you look at their web site you will see that it is not distributed this far east:

    If anyone knows where to get this, please share!

    1. Oh my god - I love Fat Tire! My husband has been frantically searching for it in the area but no luck. We order it from They ship anywhere. They have lots of great beers - Alaskan Smoked Porter, etc. Yum!

      2 Replies
      1. re: AmblerGirl

        That's a great site, with tons of beers, but shipping is quite costly (12 beers will cost $47)

        1. re: phungi

          Where are you located?? I get a 12 pack of Fat Tire from Liquid Solutions shipped to Ohio for around $25.00.

      2. Bella Vista Beer on 11th and Fitzwater carries a lot of beers from all over. Give them a call.

        5 Replies
        1. re: Philly Ray

          There is a store at 10th and Pine(can't remember the name) which sells all kinds of beers. As I remember, you don't have to purchase by the case.

            1. re: Philly Ray

              I don't think it's at the foodery, though I have seen other Colorado beers there, Avery and some others.

              1. re: joypirate

                I wish they had it at the Foodery, we looked there for it specifically.

                Maybe you can see if Matt from the Beer Yard could order it? I know he has ordered special cases before.

        2. feel your pain, I fell in love with Fat Tire in Chicago. Unfortunately, it isn't distributed west of the Mississippi. I

          3 Replies
          1. re: lawgirl3278

            That statement is not quite true as Chicago is East of the Mississippi last I checked.

            From the New Belgium Website FAQ section:

            "Where can I find your beers?
            A. Good question. Crucial, really. We are a regional craft brewer distributing throughout the western United States. Outside Colorado, you can find most or all of our line in Arizona, Arkansas, California, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Nevada, Oregon, Texas, Washington and Wyoming"

            1. re: cwdonald

              Oops sorry about that. That was what someone told me. Either way, all of those states are too far from Philly :(

            2. re: lawgirl3278

              Not true. I saw it in Los Angeles just last week at a Gelson's.

            3. Plenty of craft Amber ales out there that are just as good, if not better. This one just seems to get more word of mouth than others. Check your backyard for quality brewers and try their amber offering, you may just be surprised.

              19 Replies
              1. re: LStaff

                I've never really understood the appeal of Fat Tire. It seems like a pretty standard (read: boring) amber. No real hops to speak of, and too sweet.

                1. re: Josh

                  It's sort of a classic "training wheels" craft beer (and, apparently, a lot of beer drinkers are happy to keep the wheels on rather than move up to a 10-speed European road bike or 18 speed mountain bike). When I had my first (and last) one in Boulder a decade ago, I thought, "Ah, so this is what they drink in the West 'cause they can't get Yuengling Traditional Lager or Shiner Bock."

                  1. re: JessKidden

                    I couldn't disagree more. Shiner is the second most disappointing Bock I've ever had, while Fat Tire by far the best American amber I've ever tried (though I must admit that it's not a style I explore much)

                    1. re: cali2ia

                      Shiner Bock is not really a bock. In part, that is why it is so disappointing.

                      1. re: brentk

                        cali2, couldn't agree more. I live in Balto and have heard nothing but people get all giddy over Fat Tire like it was a Twilight movie (which sucked beyond belief, wife made me watch). I finally had one on a trip out west, don't get it. Shiner is one of my all time fav.

                        1. re: drlee_susquespine

                          I'm not sure I get Shiner, either. It's not even a bock.

                            1. re: brentk

                              Of course it's a bock.
                              Is it a traditional, German style bock? No, not at all...not even close.
                              But it's just a lighter take on the style. For many years, most American brewers offered a bock beer as a seasonal specialty. Some were quite good, some were their standard brew colored with caramel.
                              Shiner's is actually probably somewhere in the middle...but I think it' s still a very refreshing beer. It's actually nice to see that this old brand is still being made...

                              It's actually a very refreshing brew

                      2. re: JessKidden

                        Perhaps the "training wheels" analogy is appropriate for some people. I spent most of my life in N. Texas and Coors was popular. When I went skiing (about 1995) I found Fat Tire in Frisco, Colorado; I was wowed and amazed!
                        Then I found Sam Adams Cream Stout and other stronger beers. It's really hard to go back.... Fat Tire is a little sweet, but I think that's part of its charm. If I am lucky enough to stumble upon it, on tap, I have to have some, at least for old times sake! I have to admit, it doesn't seem quite as good now....

                        1. re: Scargod

                          Hey, I'm tired of Sam Adams, but down in Austin we found Fat Tire a really pleasant treat and respite from Shiner Bock. The only big beer mistake, was a German named Anheyser prodec "Brewed only in Texas." At least with Pearl I know what I'm getting; PBR w/ a different label.

                            1. re: Jim Dorsch

                              Sadly, yes.
                              For the record, I'd take a Fat Tire any day over a Yuengling(And I was nursed on Yuengling) and the ubiquitous, sweet, Shiner Bock. If Fat Tire is training wheels, the other 2 are trikes.

                              1. re: Passadumkeg

                                Also sadly, since I'm a Texan, will I say that I prefer Fat Tire over Shiner Bock or (way over) Ziegenbach. But who am I to say I'm an expert?
                                I do like the "ubiquitous" you used for the Shiner! What's that mean?
                                I don't know Yuengling. Never had one. Did you mean the lager, the black and tan or the Old German (which is no longer produced) and which, according to Wickapedia, "was a flavorful, slightly sweet lager"?

                                1. re: Scargod

                                  I think the "you" was me, not Shiner.

                                  1. re: Passadumkeg

                                    Can't even answer a simple question!

                              2. re: Jim Dorsch

                                Ahhh, so that's what that is. I tried it in a restaurant when I was out there, and thought it was swill. Makes perfect sense, now.

                        2. re: Josh

                          It reminds me of the hype a certain other Colorado beer used to have years ago that was also not shipped east of the Mississippi.

                          1. re: Josh

                            At this point I think the beer lives more on its reputation than its flavor.

                            Sometimes I think people are stuck on getting "that" beer because they may not be experienced enough in the world of beer to realize their are alternatives in the same style. Maybe their friends told them how awesome the beer is, try it, or tried it while on vacation and compared to the beer they regularly drink, it has so much more flavor, so they like it. When they get back home, they want to find "that" beer without realizing that there may be handfuls of the same style (and different styles) available at their local store that they might enjoy just as much. But that would take experimentation, willingness to go outside their norm, dropping their pre-concieved notions of what beer is and should be, and willingness to take a chance at something they may not like. Its easier just to take their friends advice - if they liked it and raved about it, it should be good, right?

                            Blue Moon is riding "that" wave right now.

                            1. re: LStaff

                              It might also be an emotional reaction. When I first had a Fat Tire, it was with some good friends during a very fun trip in Arizona. My fondness of Fat Tire brings me back to that time. Many people try these "new" beers while traveling, so it may be less about the flavor and more about the memories that are revived.