NORTH CAROLINA BREWERIES
North Carolina is considered “the State of Southern Beer” as it’s the home to more than 260 breweries and brewpubs. Using local ingredients from barley and wheat to blueberries and sweet potatoes, NC brewers are constantly revolutionizing the craft beer industry. More than 10,000 folks work in these breweries, cranking out close to 700,000 barrels a year. With this rate of production, the state makes close to $2 billion in craft beer sales each year, making the industry a growing economic engine.
Although most breweries are open year round, April has been declared North Carolina Beer Month, a celebration of the state’s brewing community! Visitors are encouraged to come tour the breweries, sample beers, enjoy festivities, while learning the history of craft beer.
All breweries featured were chosen based on:
● Membership in the brewers associations in their respective states
● A 4.3 rating or higher from respected consumer websites
● Location in popular visitor areas of the state
● Public tours and tastings available
For a complete listing of breweries in North Carolina, please visit the website:
North Carolina Craft Brewers Association
Asheville is a favorite beer destination and is a four-time “Beer City USA” poll topper, featuring more than 20 breweries!
Green Man Brewery
As one of North Carolina’s original breweries, since 1997, Green Man has been producing some of the beer scene’s most iconic ales, often recognized for quality and loyalty to traditional English Styles. The brewery offers a newly constructed three-story packaging hall, a “brewtique,” and an indoor/outdoor taproom that overlooks production and the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Visitor review: “It’s probably one of the coolest breweries in Asheville and definitely a must see. The new building addition is beautiful and the tours are well worth the 12 bucks! The staff is awesome and friendly! Try the ESB beer, a fantastic brown style English beer!”
Wicked Weed Brewing
In 2009, Walt and Luke Dickinson sat a craft beer bar and talked about the dream of opening their own brewery, focusing on West Coast hoppy ales and authentic Belgian ales brewed to inspire those who drank them. Then in 2012, Wicked Weed found a home in a former hardware store building and created an atmosphere focused on drinkability and boundary-pushing recipes. Visitors can sample beer, receive a commemorative sample glass and enjoy a free behind-the-scenes look at one of the most-visited tourist attractions in Asheville.
Visitor review: “A great place! It has a beautiful interior and exterior. I like the beers, especially Pernicious. Their merchandise shop has a wide array of items and you can buy some of the special releases there to take home. They also do growler fills. If you don’t have a growler, you can pick one up there! It’s definitely worth the visit.”
New Belgium Brewing Company
Phone: 888.598.9552 / 828.333.6900
The New Belgium Brewing Company is a major craft brewing expansion that offers live-storytelling, beer-sampling, and art-gazing fun. Free brewery tours are offered for all ages and reservations are recommended. Visitors can rent private rooms for tasting in the Asheville brewery, view live music, purchase a variety of food from food trucks, and attend beer symposiums and celebrations. Dogs are welcome outside the brewery!
Visitor review: “It's such an awesome place to go and hang out. The staff is quite friendly, and the beer options are high quality and kept fresh. Also, they have a super lineup of local food trucks that are great for grabbing a bite. They are scheduled, so you can always look on the website to check and see what kinds of food will be there. Overall, I love it!”
Oskar Blues Brewery
In 2002, the funky Colorado grow brew-hub started stuffing their pale ale (Dale’s Pale Ale) in a can. Not only did it begin the craft-beer-in-a-can craze, but it has grown to add breweries in Brevard, North Carolina and in the Live Music Capital of the World, Austin, Texas. Oskar Blues has revolutionized itself to become a major craft brewery including live music, a restaurant chain, a line of specialty sodas, and its Crowler, a 32-ounce portable growler-sized can.
Visitor review: “By far the most welcoming brewery/brewpub I've ever visited. The staff was super polite even when slammed busy. The beer selection is superb, a selection of artisan barrel aged beer are to die for. Try them all. The events, both scheduled and impromptu, are thoughtful, and a truly pleasant experience. Please come and have as much fun as we have.”
Heist opened its doors in 2012, as Charlotte’s only Craft Brewpub. Originally brewing on a 10HL German brewhouse, they currently operate a 30-barrel production facility. New flavors of beer, wood-fired specialties and contemporary cuisine blend perfectly in the modern yet rustic atmosphere of the brewery. For those who prefer the art of mixology over beer, there’s also an extensive Craft Cocktail program, as well as over 100 whiskeys.
Visitor review: “This place is amazing! The experience is always new and refreshing! The food items on each menu change every so often so there’s always something new to try. Same goes for their beer and hand crafted cocktails. I come about twice a month and the beer selection is different every time! It never gets old! The patio is a prime spot to be if it’s nice out and especially if you have a dog. The employees act genuinely thrilled when people bring their pets.”
When Greensboro had not kept pace with the changing regulation that was contributing to the craft brewery explosion in other areas, founder Mark Gibbs approached the city to propose making it more appealing to microbreweries. Thus Gibb’s Hundred Brewing Company was born out of a love of beer, a desire to feel a deeper sense of community, and a wish to contribute to the growth of Greensboro. Enjoy a beer and participate in different family-friendly events hosted every month.
Visitor review: “It’s some of the best craft beer in Greensboro, and a great place to grab a casual drink with friends, play a board game, or enjoy the deck. Kid-friendly and dog-friendly, but still feels hip. It’s extra good when a food truck is parked nearby.”
Mills River, NC
Sierra Nevada Brewing Company
In 1980, Founder Ken Grossman traveled through rural dairy communities throughout California and Oregon searching for scrap stainless steel his own brewery equipment. With growing demand, Ken and his high school friend traveled to Germany to dismantle a brewhouse piece by piece and rebuild it in America. Today, the brewery has a 350 seat-auditorium for live music. It uses solar panel and hydrogen fuel cell energy, hosts the largest celebration of craft beer in history, and has become one of the largest craft brewery organizations in the United States.
Visitor review: “A lovely location, great selection of quality beers, and an all-around entertaining and educational experience for the whole family. Food offerings were delicious and the outdoor amphitheatre with live band made for an enjoyable afternoon. A highly-recommended stop-over when in the area.”
Foothills Brewing Company
Downtown Brewpub Phone: 336.777.3348
Brewery & Tasting Room Phone: 336.997.9484
Foothills Brewing is one of the top regional craft breweries in the southeast United States and ranked among ratebeer.com’s “100 Best Breweries in the World.” Foothills began brewing beer in 2015 with three 15-barrel fermenters. As demand and production increased, the solution came from an old manila envelope factory that soon became Foothills’ main production facility. Weekend tours are offered from the tasting room at the main brewing facility. If you ask nicely at the brewpub, you might be able to see production first hand!
Visitor review: “Foothills tasting room has one of the nicest staffs I have ever come across. They offer everything from a running club, to trivia, to brewery tours to daily food trucks. They also host larger events such as Oktoberfest, various Pet Adoption outreach events, Hop Swap and other great activities. You'd be hard pressed to find a month where they didn't have something big going on.”
By Tyria Goines
Read more: SC Breweries