Discovering Local Gems: Craft Beer Hotspots Near You
Craft beer lovers, unite! The search for the perfect brew can take you on a journey to uncover some of the most unique, vibrant, and innovative craft beer hotspots near you. As more and more breweries open their doors, it’s also a fantastic opportunity to explore your local beer culture, meet fellow beer enthusiasts, and make new friends along the way. In this ultimate guide, we’ll be shedding light on some notable craft beer hotspots across the United States that are worth visiting, whether you’re a seasoned beer aficionado, casual socializer, or traveling tourist. So, if you’ve been eager to find some outstanding “craft beer near me,” read on and prepare to be inspired!
Disclaimer: Always remember to drink responsibly, and never drink and drive.
The Pacific Northwest: A Craft Beer Wonderland
Known as “Beervana,” Portland is often regarded as one of the most important craft beer cities in the United States. With over 75 breweries in the city alone, it’s evident that Portlanders take their love of craft beer seriously. Some must-visit destinations include:
- Deschutes Brewery: Founded in 1988 and hailing from Bend, Oregon, Deschutes has become a staple in the Pacific Northwest beer scene. Their Portland Public House offers a variety of their flagship beers, as well as experimental brews exclusive to the location.
Great Notion Brewing: A fan favorite for their hazy IPAs, fruity sours, and culinary-inspired stouts, this brewery has gained acclaim for its innovative approach to brewing. Be sure to try their famous Blueberry Muffin sour ale, which tastes uncannily like the real thing!
Cascade Brewing Barrel House: For sour beer enthusiasts, Cascade is nothing short of paradise. With a vast selection of barrel-aged sour beers, they showcase how diverse and nuanced the sour beer category can be.
Seattle is no stranger to the craft beer scene, boasting more than 60 breweries within city limits. The perfect destination for beer enthusiasts and tourists alike, the city offers a fantastic selection of brews, from classic Pacific Northwest IPAs to more experimental varieties. Don’t miss:
- Fremont Brewing: A family-owned and community-oriented brewery, Fremont produces some of Seattle’s most beloved beers. Their Interurban IPA and Lush IPA are favorites among locals and visitors alike.
Cloudburst Brewing: Located near the famous Pike Place Market, Cloudburst churns out small-batch IPAs, stouts, saisons, and more. Their Happy Little Clouds pilsner is a deliciously crisp and refreshing option for a sunny Seattle day.
Holy Mountain Brewing: With an emphasis on farmhouse ales and barrel-aged beers, Holy Mountain has cultivated a dedicated following. Their taproom, adorned with rustic wood and minimalistic décor, provides an inviting atmosphere to savor their unique creations.
The West Coast: Sunshine and Hoppy Brews
San Diego, California
San Diego’s beer scene has exploded in recent years, with over 150 breweries now calling the city home. Known for their hop-forward IPAs, San Diego offers a diverse array of breweries to suit any palate. Some highlights include:
- Stone Brewing: As one of the largest craft breweries in the United States, Stone has earned a reputation for its bold, hoppy beers. Their iconic Stone IPA and Arrogant Bastard Ale are just two examples of their exceptional offerings.
Modern Times Beer: With a focus on innovation and quality, Modern Times has quickly made a name for itself. Their lineup includes a range of hazy IPAs, fruited sours, and decadent stouts, all with eye-catching and colorful can designs.
AleSmith Brewing Company: Known for their exceptional craftsmanship, AleSmith has been producing award-winning beers since 1995. Their Speedway Stout, a rich imperial stout with notes of chocolate and coffee, is an absolute must-try.
Los Angeles, California
Though often overshadowed by its southern neighbor, Los Angeles has a burgeoning beer scene with over 75 breweries in the area. From small neighborhood taprooms to large-scale production facilities, there’s no shortage of spots to get your craft beer fix in the City of Angels:
- Monkish Brewing Co.: Specializing in Belgian-style ales and hoppy beers, Monkish is a must-visit destination for any beer lover. Their hazy IPAs sell out quickly, so be prepared to arrive early on release days.
Highland Park Brewery: With two locations in Los Angeles, Highland Park Brewery has become a local favorite. Known for their juicy IPAs, crisp pilsners, and barrel-aged beers, there’s something for everyone on their constantly rotating tap list.
Three Weavers Brewing Company: As one of the largest independent craft breweries in Los Angeles County, Three Weavers is dedicated to producing well-balanced and approachable beers. Their Expatriate IPA and Seafarer kölsch are classics that should not be missed.
The East Coast: History and Innovation
A city steeped in history and tradition, Boston is home to a thriving craft beer scene with more than 30 breweries. From iconic beer institutions to newer establishments pushing the boundaries of brewing, Boston offers a blend of old and new worth exploring:
- Samuel Adams Boston Brewery: As one of the pioneers of the American craft beer movement, a visit to the Samuel Adams brewery is a must. Their taproom offers everything from classic favorites to exclusive, experimental brews.
Trillium Brewing Company: Since opening in 2013, Trillium has garnered a passionate following for their hazy IPAs, wild ales, and barrel-aged offerings. With several locations throughout the city, there are plenty of opportunities to sample their exceptional beers.
Night Shift Brewing: With a focus on unique and innovative beers, Night Shift’s ever-changing lineup is sure to impress. Visit their Lovejoy Wharf location, which offers a full-service restaurant, coffee bar, and of course, plenty of their delicious brews.
As a small city with a big beer scene, Burlington is home to some of the most highly regarded craft breweries in the country. With over 20 breweries in the area, it has become a mecca for beer lovers seeking world-class IPAs, stouts, and sours:
- The Alchemist: Known for their hard-to-find and highly coveted Heady Topper IPA, The Alchemist is a must for any beer enthusiast. While their Waterbury brewery is not open to the public, their Stowe location offers tastings, merchandise, and a selection of their beers to-go.
Hill Farmstead Brewery: Often considered one of the best breweries in the world, Hill Farmstead is an essential stop for any craft beer lover. Their focus on farmhouse ales, saisons, and barrel-aged offerings is unparalleled, ensuring a memorable experience for all who visit.
Foam Brewers: Located on the shores of Lake Champlain, Foam Brewers offers stunning views and even better beers. With a rotating selection of IPAs, sours, and experimental brews, there’s always something new to try at this unique brewery.
The United States is overflowing with exceptional craft beer hotspots, and this list barely scratches the surface. Whether you’re a local beer enthusiast, casual socializer, or traveling tourist, there’s never been a better time to explore the vibrant and diverse world of craft beer. So go ahead, venture out, and discover the hidden gems waiting to be found just around the corner. Cheers!
Be sure to share your own favorite “craft beer near me” hotspots in the comments below, and let’s continue to grow our list of must-visit destinations for beer lovers across the United States.