MBTopCraftBeer-RickZichAddition Over the next few months, we are going to feature a Mr. Beer employee and their favorite craft beers on the blog. With an office full of beer enthusiast, the lists will range from well-known, household favorites to some lesser known, rare craft beers. Our hope is to share the wide variety of delicious beer that is out there just waiting for you to try… go ahead and use these posts to create yourself a craft beer bucket list of sorts. Trust us, you won't be disappointed with any of these picks.

Our first employee highlight is President, Rick Zich. Rick has been with Mr. Beer for over a decade, and has had the pleasure of enjoying craft beer from around the country during this time. He tends to drink beer based on seasonality, but here are his top picks that he would never pass up, no matter what season it is!

Cocoa Bender from Surly Brewing

One of Surly Brewing's "Occasional Beers," cocao bender is often times brewed for events, or can be found on tap at the brewerery, but isn't for sale on store shelves. This American brown ale is made with cacao nibs, vanilla beans, and coffee, and is sure to cheer up even the most surly beer lover with its strong coffee flavor accompanied by tastes of roasted malt, cocoa and caramel.

Surly Brewing is located in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Surly sold their first keg in February of 2006, and was then voted the Top American Brewery by BeerAdvocate Magazine in 2007, which is a testament to just how fantastic their beers really are. Their Surly Darkness was also named the best American beer in the world by RateBeer in 2007. Currently, Surly Brewing beer can only be found in Minnesota.

City Day Ale by Urban Growler

The City Day Ale is a Kentucky Common Beer. A once popular beer style around Kentucky, the Prohibition saw the extinction of this beer being brewed commercially. Then, along came Urban Growler. This beer is brewed in the same way one would brew a bourbon: barley, corn and rye, a titch of sourness (a sour mash for bourbon) and mash. Instead of distilling the mash to make bourbon, a Kentucky Common Beer is boiled and has hops added to create an easy drinking ale to be enjoyed any day of the year.

Urban Growler was the very first woman-owned and - brewed microbrwery in Minnesota. Founded in 2013 by Head Brewer Deb Loch and her partner Jill Pavlak, this brewery quickly became a success thanks to their mission of bringing people together through beer. They also created a Plow to Pint series, which uses local ingredients from farmer's right there in Minnesota. These ladies show that beer isn't just a man's game.

Captain Obvious from Horny Goat Brewing

A complex blend of malts anchor this Belgian-inspired American Red Ale known as Captain Obvious. A faint hint of Belgian stout yeast helps bring the Citra hops to the forefront in this unique brew that is only brewed in small batches and is seasonal at Horny Goat.

Horny Goat is a small brewery located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. They are known locally for their fun events and great beers.