Although the pandemic could be changing this.

I'll never forget when I saw my first drive-thru liquor store. I had just moved to college in Texas and I passed one on the street. At first I thought, "nah, that can't be right." However, after a few more passes, I finally pulled into the parking lot.

The sign distinctly said "drive-thru liquor."

At this point in my life I had no experience with alcohol. My parents didn't drink and I was not old enough. I also wasn't one of those kids who experimented with it in high school. So I was actually waiting for the police to come shut it down because I thought it was an illegal business.

Yep, I thought drive-thru liquor meant you were drinking and driving.

Turns out it's just a super easy way to get what you need. Headed to someone's house for a dinner party and forgot a bottle of wine? Drive on through. Looking to grab something on the way to a tailgate? Drive on through. Forgot to grab something while running errands and now you've got cold groceries in the car? Drive on through.

We are one of 30 states with drive-thru liquor stores.

DavidPrahl, ThinkStock Images

That means 20 states are still doing things the old fashioned way. What is this, the 1800s?

Now, to be honest, I didn't think that many states had liquor stores with this feature. I used to think it was just a southern thing. Obviously I had first seen these in Texas and then utilized them during Mardi Gras season when I lived in Louisiana.

I think the pandemic may have changed this for some states and will continue to change it. One of the things we saw become legal (if only for a season) in 2020 was alcoholic drinks to-go. You could get your pick-up order from your favorite restaurant and your favorite boozy drink to go with it. That feature has stuck in some places so I wouldn't be surprised if drive-thru liquor stores are a thing nationwide in the near future.

I also love that there are so many names for drive-thru liquor stores like, brew-thrus, party barns, beer barns, bootleggers, bottle shops, etc.

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To find the best beer in each state and Washington D.C., Stacker analyzed January 2020 data from BeerAdvocate, a website that gathers user scores for beer in real-time. BeerAdvocate makes its determinations by compiling consumer ratings for all 50 states and Washington D.C. and applying a weighted rank to each. The weighted rank pulls the beer toward the list's average based on the number of ratings it has and aims to allow lesser-known beers to increase in rank. Only beers with at least 10 rankings to be considered; we took it a step further to only include beers with at least 100 user rankings in our gallery. Keep reading to find out what the best beer is in each of the 50 states and Washington D.C.

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