There are many parts of the country that produce fine craft beers, whether they’re centuries old, or new to the market, but one business practice holds true: those who reinvent themselves, sustain themselves.
As a bar owner looking to discover new craft beers, you want to tour breweries that are taking risks and being creative with flavors. Getting your business behind a breakout craft beer, can only have a positive impact on your revenue.
As the popularity of craft beer grows, many breweries are now offering a behind-the-scenes look; where you can sample the thirst-quenching wares of their inner brewing processes. The following are some breweries that are the top in the country for discovering new craft beers:
Dogfish Head Brewery, Milton, DE
Known For: 60 Minute IPA
This brewery is living proof of the American dream. One of the nation’s most popular breweries, Dogfish Head opened in 1995. It was the first brewpub in the state of Delaware, and the smallest commercial brewery in the country. They now operate out of a 100,000 square-foot cannery, and sell to more than 25 states.
“When I think of ‘craft beer,’ Dogfish Head is the first brewery that pops into my head. Their creativity and dedication to the craft beer tradition is inspiring.”
~Jason Morgan of Craft Beer Business
Featured on Discovery Channel’s Brew Masters, Dogfish Head’s rise to fame is not only from their exceptional craft beers. Their attention to detail and customer service, is impeccable.
The free tour starts off with a greeting from the brewery’s “outdoor fermenters.” It also includes four beer samples, and a peek behind the curtain. The brewery even has it’s very own “beer-geek hip-hop ensemble.” That just goes to show the ingenuity and creativity of the people behind Dogfish.
New Belgium Brewery, Fort Collins, CO
Known For: Fat Tire Amber Ale
The philanthropist of the bunch, the New Belgium Brewery is just as environmentally conscious, as it is beer conscious. During your free 90-minute tour, you’ll not only sample some of their newest creations, but experience an eco-friendly brewery that’s community minded. Just look at who owns the place! The brewery is entirely owned by it’s staff.
“When it comes to the melding of craft beer, the arts, lifestyle, eco-consciousness, and community, this Fort Collins, Colo., brewery has few peers. I like what New Belgium ‘does’ almost as much as I enjoy what they brew.”
~Tom Bobak of American Craft Beer
Their signature beer, Fat Tire, gets it’s namesake from when the founder delivered beer on his bike, back in 1989. New Belgium focuses on sustainability and they’re the world’s largest single user of wind power.
If you can’t make it out to Colorado, New Belgium hosts the Tour de Fat in cities across the country. The annual festivals of “Beer, Bikes & Bemusement” are held to raise money for bicycle nonprofits.
The Stone Brewing Company, Escondido, CA
Known For: Stone IPA
When asking what the best craft beer tour is in the country, most beer enthusiasts will choose Stone Brewing Co. for the win. It was voted the number one “All-Time Top Breweries on Planet Earth,” by Beer Advocate in 2008, and is the 10th largest brewery in the country.
The brewery is also known for it’s laid back, wise-cracking attitude, with the company’s “indoctrination specialist,” the life of the party. They’ll introduce you to the brewing process, while offering thoughts on the craft of brewing, styles, flavor notes, and of course a generous helping of samples. The Stone Brewing Company is very creative with new craft beer, as well.
“No brewery in San Diego — and perhaps the world — pushes more envelopes or thinks outside so many boxes.”
~Peter Lowe of UT San Diego
What sets this brewery tour apart, from any other, is the exceptional experience. The Stone Brewing World Bistro and Gardens was opened next door, and features a farm-to-table restaurant, and rolling hills of gardens. They even have an onsite boulder display, with over 250 different types of rock, you can lazily stroll around through. This tour is definitely one to add to your list.
“I love Stone’s attitude as much as I love their beer. Big and bold, their craft beer always sticks with you long after the six-pack is gone.”
~Jason Morgan of Craft Beer Business
Keep in mind, these are just a few suggestions. There are hundreds of microbreweries across the country, that are just waiting to have great craft beer discovered. It only takes a little dedication, and a careful eye, to spot that next American super beer!