If there’s one thing Milwaukee loves more than drinking, it’s sharing random internet lists that reveal how much Milwaukee loves drinking.

Yep, it’s time for another “Milwaukee is the drunkest city in America” list! This one, cranked out earlier this month by respected website Insider Monkey (and dutifully reported on by local media), names Milwaukee as the drunkest city in America for 2023. “Wisconsin has one of the lowest alcohol tax rates in the country, resulting in lower retail and wholesale prices,” reads the absolutely-not-AI-generated blurb. “Some of the drunkest counties in America are in Wisconsin and the state has 7 of the 10 U.S. cities with the highest alcohol consumption per capita. Milwaukee, with its sprawling beer gardens, is the drunkest city in America in 2023.”

Uh huh. Clearly our beer gardens are to blame.

How did Insider Monkey compile its rankings? (Minneapolis came in second, by the way, and Boston came in third.) “To collect data for this article,” explains the site, “we have referred to the County Health Rankings and Roadmaps, the U.S. Census Bureau, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, looking for Cities With the Highest Rates of Excessive Drinking.” The excessive drinking rate “measures the percentage of a city’s adult population that reports binge or heavy drinking in the past 30 days.” Milwaukee’s excessive drinking rate is listed as 24.6%.

So there you go! We’re the drunkest city in America! Again! Or not?

Yep, using similar methodology, another respected website, 24/7 Wall St., recently put the Milwaukee-Waukesha area at a lowly (?) 17 on its 2023 “drunkest cities in America” list. Hell, on this list, Milwaukee is “beat” by eight other Wisconsin metropolitan areas: Wausau-Weston (#16), Oshkosh-Neenah (#15), Racine (#12), Fond du Lac (#9), Green Bay (#8), Appleton (#6), La Crosse-Onalaska (#5), and Eau Claire (#3). The drunkest city, according to 24/7 Wall St.? St. Cloud, Minnesota.

So, um, there you go? We’re not the drunkest city in America? Or maybe we are? Who knows. We do like to drink.

In other fascinating lists that show up in our inboxes every morning, Wisconsin is “statistically the eighth most dangerous state to live in”; Wisconsin is the “least sleepy state” (?); Wisconsinites’ favorite Legend Of Zelda character is…Zelda (no love for that Hudson Construction guy?); and Wisconsinites are “desperate to delete Facebook.”

We’ll drink to that last one.

Exclusive articles, podcasts, and more. Support Milwaukee Record on Patreon.


Mandatory Milwaukee: Sharing something about Wisconsin having a bunch of the “drunkest cities/counties in America”

Mandatory Milwaukee/Wisconsin: Sharing that “bars vs. grocery stores” map on social media

About The Author

Avatar photo
Co-Founder and Editor

Matt Wild weighs between 140 and 145 pounds. He lives on Milwaukee's east side.