If you’d like to experience the beer world Asheville-style, you have many incredible options available to you. You can visit breweries on your own to sample their offerings and see how the magic happens — or take a whirlwind tour led by a knowledgeable guide. Throughout most years, you can even find fun brew-centric festivals to attend all across the state. Ready to get started on your explorations? Here’s everything you need to know about enjoying beer in Asheville, North Carolina.
Every brewery in Asheville differs in their approach to whipping up tasty batches of beer and presenting them to the public. So, with each visit, you get to step into their world and perhaps even go behind the scenes. Here are five breweries you absolutely must visit at least once.
Asheville Brewing Company
A definite fan favorite with the locals, Asheville Brewing Company runs three separate locations in the north, south, and central sections of the city. To land straight at their production brewery and packaging warehouse, you’ll need to go to the Downtown – South Slope location.
While there, you can chill in their open-air courtyard, covered patio, or rooftop patio while sipping on any of their house brews, such as:
- 828 Pale Ale
- Ashevillian Black IPA
- B.I.G. Juicy — Hazy Double IPA
- Ginger Beer
They’re always rolling out seasonal delights and new releases, so jet in on the regular to check out what’s on tap.
While you can get Hi-Wire Brewing concoctions at practically any grocery store, restaurant, and bottle shop, nothing beats enjoying an icy cold brew at their Big Top taproom. At that location, the industry aesthetic and friendly service instantly set the mood for an incredible beer tasting experience.
With that, you’ll be set to try all their most popular offerings, including the Hi-Pitch Mosaic IPA, Dry-Hopped Pilsner, and Old North Premium Lager. Want to see how it all comes together? Ask to sign up for their brewery tour for an inside look.
In order to spread the love across Asheville, Archetype Brewing has two excellent taproom locations. Their downtown location is an intimate affair with low-key lighting, exposed brick, and cozy leather couches.
But it’s at their West Asheville location where they dream up all their latest concoctions in their 10-barrel brewhouse. With a trip over to that taproom, you can get a taste of all the newest brews, including their Cowboy Poet lager, Talking to Plants witbier, and Unruly Mystic coffee porter.
Bhramari Brewing Co.
Originally known as Hive Mind, Bhramari Brewing Co. operates out of the South Slope Brewing district, always busy dreaming up their next batch. You can watch their wheels turn by taking a tour or just sample the fruits of their labor while chilling in the taproom.
When it comes time to order off their menu, they make it easy to choose from their many options by offering a four drink flight, lovingly dubbed Wilber and Orville’s Awesome Adventure. You can add any of their brews to your flight, such as their Neon Ghosts India pale ale, The Good Fight sour pale ale, and Fast Cars, Danger, Fire and Knives Kolsch.
Wicked Weed Brewing Pub
As they’ve been growing by leaps and bounds in the past few years, Wicked Weed Brewing Pub now has three taprooms and two full-scale breweries under their wings. West Asheville houses their 50-barrel production brewery, while South Slope serves as home to their sour beer-dedicated taproom.
To get a glimpse of where it all started, however, you’ll have to jet over to their Brewpub on Biltmore Avenue. At that location, you can see their original 15-barrel brewery plus visit their restaurant, beer bar, and bottle shop. As you do that, make sure to try out their many exquisite offerings, like Black Angel black sour ale, Coastal Love hazy IPA, and Oak Fermented Cider.
By taking a brew tour, you can get a fully-curated beer tasting experience highlighted by inside info from your knowledgeable guide. Upon signing up, you’ll get to tag along with your guide all across Asheville to taste all the top local brews. The following tour options are regularly touted as the best of the best, so be sure to try them out.
Asheville Brewery Tours
When you want to take a private tour of all the best brewing companies in Asheville, you can sign up for an informative trip with Asheville Brewery Tours. As a proud partner of Burial Beer Co. and Hillman Beer, the guides at this tour company always have the inside scoop to share. In addition to those two breweries, you’ll land behind the scenes at many of the top spots for craft brews in the downtown area.
BREW-ed of Asheville
If you’re looking to see all the breweries that call the South Slope neighborhood their home, you’ll want to hop on the BREW-ed of Asheville tour. Depending on your selected tour, you’ll get to see two to three breweries in as many hours while sampling all their best beer varieties available at each location. In between your stops, your beer expert will share all their knowledge about local history and culture.
Asheville Brews Cruise
When you want to take a deep dive into the who, what, why, and how of beer culture, Asheville Brews Cruise is the place to go. On their tours, you’ll visit all the most popular breweries in town while learning about their brewing processes, beer types, and so much more. You’ll get your fill of every variety, too, all while leaving the driving to the professionals.
For an all-day exploration into beer, beer, and more beer, you can usually count on festivals to come through in a big way. Although they are slow to ramp up after a year off, there’s already one on the books this fall season.
Tour de Fat
Held since 1999 by the New Belgium Brewing Company, the Tour de Fat festival gives you a chance to celebrate everything bicycles and beer. After a year off, this event is sure to be a blast, and it all starts on September 19th, 2021.
As always, the bicycle parade kicks off the event, getting everyone ready for great times alongside their beloved community members. Then, it’s time to sample all the top brews from New Belgium plus enjoy world-class entertainment of all kinds.
It’s not just about having fun either. While enjoying the finest brews, live music performances, and games of all kinds, your activities support local bike non-profits. The proceeds will then go toward bicycle advocacy, trails, and other important causes as they come up.
As you check out each location on this list, keep track of your favorites, so you can go again and again. You can then share the love by dragging along your family and friends, letting them experience all the wonders of the Asheville beer scene.