Heading into 2020, beer has never been hotter. In addition to the more common big-name breweries, the smaller microbreweries are increasingly making a name for themselves on the national stage. This is good news for travelers looking to combine a vacation with the chance to experience some of the best brews going today. Here are eight places to consider for your next beer-centric trip:
New Orleans: It is no secret that New Orleans is a boozy city. In recent years, the city has seen a number of microbreweries pop up on the scene to complement the famous cocktails that grace the landscape of this travel hotspot. Crescent City Brewhouse is centrally located in the French Quarter inside of a historic building. Visitors can throw back a pint or two while listening to some of the city’s famous jazz music. Or head to Courtyard Brewery and try its unique stout made with the iconic king cake.Read More »
Portland: The Rose City is where you want to be if you are a hops aficionado. With the neighboring Cascades Mountains towering over in the distance, the region is rich in hops, making it a natural destination for hop-forward beers. The city’s unique culture and people also contribute to this hipster beer vibe. If you have more time to explore the state, be sure to head to Bend. This quintessential Pacific Northwest mountain town is home to Deschutes Brewery, 10 Barrel Brewing Co., the Ale Apothecary, and more.
Grand Rapids: This charming Michigan city has proclaimed itself to be “Beer City USA” for good reason. The booming beer scene is especially fun during the pleasant summer months. The Beer City Ale Trail takes visitors through 80 microbreweries, allowing you to sample some of the region’s best brews. Grand Rapids is also home to a myriad of festivals and special events that pay homage to beer.
Asheville: Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, Asheville is known for its vibrant arts scene and historic architecture. This edgy city has also built up a strong reputation for its beer scene, making it the perfect getaway for when you are looking for a little bit of everything. New Belgium Brewery made big news when it announced that it was expanding its legendary site in Fort Collins, Colorado to Asheville. Other breweries to check out when in Asheville include Altamont Brewing and Wicked Weed.
San Francisco: Like its West Coast counterpart Portland, the brews of San Francisco boast a hop-heavy presence. However, in a city where the IPA reigns supreme, you can also find a variety of other types of spectacular beers from lighter lagers to heavier stouts. The Bay Area’s commitment to sustainable practices and farm to table fare also makes a great fit for the launch of many kinds of rustic farmhouse ales. In addition, sour ales are making a mark in the Bay Area, led by Berkeley’s The Rare Barrel.
Maui: As if you needed an excuse to visit the Hawaiian islands, a trip to Maui is a must-see destination if you are a fan of mixing your beer with the spirit of Aloha. This tropical paradise boasts a thriving beer scene, thanks to a number of microbreweries that have cropped up in recent years. The leader of the pack is the Maui Brewing Co., featuring two unique tasting locations on the island. When in Lahaina, be sure to stop by Kohola Brewery to sample the year-round favorites such as the Lokahi pilsner and the Red Sand ale. What could be better than relaxing on the beach with a local Maui craft brew?
Austin: Everything is bigger in Texas, including its beer. As the capital city of the Lone Star State, Austin offers its visitors a host of exciting microbrewery options. The perpetually sunny climate of Austin make it a great place to kick back and relax with a cold one. Regardless of if you are looking for a Mexican-inspired lager to wash down those tacos and queso or a trendy sour saison, you will find it in Austin. The eclectic live music scene is the perfect complement to the city’s beer landscape. Good brewpubs to consider visiting include Lazarus Brewing Company, Oasis Texas Brewing Company, and Easy Tiger.
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