Located near the North Carolina/South Carolina state line, the Charlotte region is home to dozens of breweries in operation or on the way. This breakdown of area breweries (each listed by its Charlotte neighborhood or the number of miles between it and Center City Charlotte*) will tempt any beer fan into becoming a regular in the Charlotte craft beer scene. Looking to switch it up between pints? We’ve got cideries and distilleries, too.
Blue Blaze Brewing Co.
Blue Blaze Brewing Co. crafts its path by embracing an explorer’s wanderlust mindset—and it’s all in the name. Blue blazes on the Appalachian Trail are side trail markers that identify to backpackers sources of water, places of interest or scenic outlooks, or places of rest. Charlotte’s first West End craft brewery is at the historic Savona Mill. Co-founders and Brewers Craig Nunn and Sven Giersmann focus on community vibes and environmental friendliness while crafting inventive brews.
LOSO (LOWER SOUTH END)
Sugar Creek Brewing Co.
Located in OMB’s former home on Southside Drive, Sugar Creek Brewing Company is Charlotte's first Belgian-inspired craft brewery dedicated to the craftsmanship of fresh, high-quality beer in a style and commitment representative of Belgian Trappist monks. Try Sugar Creek’s Belgian Dubbel, which won a silver medal at the 2015 U.S. Open Beer championship.
The Olde Mecklenburg Brewery
Known to locals as OMB, The Olde Mecklenburg Brewery is the oldest brewery in the area. Specializing in German-style beers, OMB’s Brauhaus is reminiscent of a German beer hall. Stop by to enjoy an OMB Copper and take the brewery tour, which was named the best in the nation by USA Today. And try the seasonal Mecktoberfest, which won a gold medal at the 2015 European Beer Star competition in Germany.
Thirsty Nomad Brewing Co.
Thirsty Nomad Brewing Co., located in South End, serves up taps that range from pale ales to chocolate stouts. The brewery’s design imbues a steampunk theme, with welded gears and wood backing on the bar front.
Bold Missy Brewery (opening early or spring 2017)
The NoDa brew haven aims to honor the courageous achievements of women like Harriet Tubman and Sally Ride. The spot’s first brew is called Rocket Ride IPA, branded as a tribute to Ride’s triumphant venture to space. Bold Missy will also offer a menu of light snacks to munch on as you sample suds.
Divine Barrel Brewing (opening summer 2017)
Divine Barrel will operate a 10-barrel system paired up with four 20-barrel stainless fermenters and a 20-barrel brite. Plus, there’s a foeder pair; they’ll hold 20 barrels apiece. Co-owner and brewer Ben Dolphens hopes to have 10 beers on tap upon opening.
Birdsong Brewing Co.
Birdsong Brewing Co.’s mission is to brew flavorful, unfiltered, quality craft. Its popularity is a result of its free-spirited vibe and tasty brews, like the Higher Ground IPA and Jalapeño Pale Ale. Due to increased demand, the brewery expanded and moved to a new location in NoDa in April 2015.
Free Range Brewing
Free Range Brewing is the product of a dream of brothers Jason and Jeff Alexander. They invite you to “let your taste buds roam” in their family-friendly, community-driven brewery in NoDa. Free Range Brewing’s farmhouse brewing approach incorporates local fruits, vegetables and herbs. Their 11 ever-rotating taps feature unique beers, cold brew coffee and housemade shrub sodas.
Located in historic Highland Park Mill, originally a cotton mill constructed in the early 1900s, Heist Brewery is a contemporary brewpub where bold, exquisite and unexpected combinations are the norm.
NoDa Brewing Company
Named after the NoDa neighborhood, this 15-barrel unique production brewery crafts small-batch premium beers including the popular Hop Drop ‘n Roll, the 2014 World Beer Cup® Gold Award Winner in the American-Style IPA category. Their second location located on North Tryon Street houses a 60-barrel production system. Stop by either of their taprooms for a brewery tour, live music, food trucks special events and more. In 2016, NoDa was named one of the South’s Best Breweries by Southern Living.
This craft beer bottle shop and tasting room has expanded and opened a 1-barrel nanobrewery that features rotating brews from local home brewer clubs, local breweries and in-house experimental batches.
Catawba Brewing Company (opening early or spring 2017)
This “newbie” to Charlotte is actually an oldie; Catawba runs three other locations—one in Morganton, North Carolina, and two in Asheville, North Carolina. In Charlotte, beer lovers can avail themselves of the brewery’s full bottling line to order fan favorites like White Zombie white ale and Mother Trucker pale ale. A 6,000-square-foot tap room and ample views of the Charlotte skyline add major bonus points to the new spot’s offerings.
Plaza Midwood’s first brewery, Legion Brewing is a 15-barrel neighborhood brewery that is all about bringing friends and beer together. Legion combines “olde world” techniques with local and seasonal influences to craft high-quality beers with unique flavors. Features throughout the brewery give a nod to its former tenant of 60 years – Brodt Music Company.
Hyde Brewing (opening spring 2017)
The space will operate as part-brewery, part-coffee shop and feature a rotating food menu. Because partners Lindsay Pitman (former owner of The Daily Press in Noda) and Dan Hyde believe in the importance of water quality when it comes to producing the best beer and coffee, a focus on this essential element will remain at the heart of what Hyde is all about. In fact, the brewery will feature an on-site water tower.
Lenny Boy Brewing Co.
Serving up organic kombucha, gluten-free wild ales, gluten-reduced beers, sours, traditional beer and more, Lenny Boy Brewing Co. is the only certified organic microbrewery in Charlotte. Try the Burn Down for What, which swept the category of Best Organic Sour at the 2015 National Organic Beer competition.
Drink Carolina proud at Sycamore Brewing! Led by husband-and-wife duo Justin and Sarah Brigham, Sycamore Brewing features the freshest ingredients possible to brew all-natural, tasty craft beer. Stop by to enjoy classic styles, seasonals and creative experimental recipes as well as wine and cider on tap at this 15-barrel brewery. Try the Southern Girl Lager, which won a bronze medal at the 2015 Great American Beer Festival.
The Unknown Brewing Co.
Just three blocks south of Bank of America Stadium, The Unknown Brewing Co.’s mission is to create exceptional beer and a beer culture that motivates craft beer lovers to live without boundaries. Try one of the three signature craft beers: Over the Edge American IPA, Pre Game session ale and Ginger Wheat.
Triple C Brewing Co.
Hop on the LYNX Light Rail and stop at the New Bern station for quick access to Triple C Brewing Co., where you can taste the refreshing flavors of the Light Rail Pale Ale or the Greenway IPA in the taproom Tuesday through Sunday.
Wooden Robot Brewery
Wooden Robot Brewery, the urban farmhouse-style brew hub, is the brainchild of longtime friends Josh Patton and Dan Wade. Wooden Robot features 16 constantly rotating taps and is the only Charlotte brewery with a foeder. Pair a homegrown brew with a bite from the Twisted Eats food truck, parked out front most days and serving fare that incorporates the brewery’s beer.
Three Spirits Brewery
Three Spirits Brewery is the brainchild of a former emergency room doctor. The 9,100-square-foot, 10-barrel brewhouse produces a flagship red lager called Reed Moon Rising in addition to a variety of other unique craft beers. Pair your beer with an offering from one of the food trucks on the weekends or take advantage of the brewery’s partnership with on-demand food delivery service Postmates.
Avenge Brewing Co. (opening winter 2016)
Avenge will bring true English flagships to Uptown Charlotte and serve quintessential American flavors in small-batch brews.
Rock Bottom Restaurant & Brewery
Head Brewer Robb Macleod, who hails from Bayhawk Ales in Irvine, California, and Alcatraz Brewing Company in Orange, California, is at the helm of this national restaurant chain’s unique local beer operation. Here on site, Macleod created handcrafted beers that are dedicated to the Charlotte market. While an inventive seasonal menu brings in new craft blends each month, a menu of three favorites is standing and includes Charlotte’s Gold (kölsch), Uptown Amber and Hop Goddess IPA.
CHARLOTTE REGIONAL BREWERIES
Rivermen Brewing Company
Located in Belmont, North Carolina, Rivermen Brewing Company was founded by four paddlers who enjoy craft beer and spending time on the river. The brewery is housed in an old mill.
York Chester Brewing Company
York Chester Brewing Company is a nanobrewery that originated in the York Chester Historic District in Gastonia, North Carolina, but is located in Belmont, North Carolina. The spot is family- and dog-friendly.
Cabarrus Brewing Company
Cabarrus Brewing Company is the first full-scale craft brewery in Concord and Cabarrus County. The 15-barrel, three vessel brewhouse is located in the historic Gibson Mill in what once served as the warehouse for the Gibson Manufacturing Company.
High Branch Brewing Co. is a family-owned brewery located in Concord. They produce Belgian-inspired and hop-forward ales with local ingredients.
Twenty-Six Acres Brewing Co.
Twenty-Six Acres Brewing Co. is a community-centric brewery and taproom, bringing “high performance brewing” to Concord. The 15-barrel brewery is located near Concord Mills.
Ass Clown Brewing Company
Ass Clown Brewing Company in Cornelius crafts 200 beers in its 9-barrel system—a far cry from its garage brewery roots. Owner Matt Glidden focuses on unique flavors made from high-quality ingredients. The name was inspired by a phrase that a friend of Glidden often used.
Bayne Brewing Company
This family-owned and operated microbrewery is led by brothers Chris and Sean Bayne. They produce a variety of small-batch creations on their 2-barrel brew system.
D9 Brewing Co.
D9 is a craft microbrewery that specializes in international IPAs, ancient sour ales, Cascadian dark ale, and various imperial and oak-aged beers. The 10-barrel production brewery has proudly brewing fanatical ales in North Carolina since 2013.
Ole Dallas Brewery (coming soon)
Ole Dallas Brewery is a small-town brewery in planning founded on the principles that family, friends, fellowship and good beer can brighten the darkest day.
Cavendish Brewing Company (opening early or spring 2017)
Taking over a former Craig Dodge Dealership, which was built in 1952, Cavendish will brew its beer in what was the dealership’s old repair shop. The former showroom will house the bar and tasting room. The brewery will start off with a 16-barrel brewhouse and 150 barrels for fermenting, plus the initial ability to make 5,000 gallons of beer every two weeks. Add food trucks, a rotating lineup of seven seasonal beers, seven specialty beers and five core varieties, for a total of 19 taps, and you’ve got Cavendish.
Co-owners David Hoy and Ray Steimel’s definition of primal (very basic and powerful) describes their goal for creating high-quality craft beer at Huntersville brew hub Primal Brewing. Primal doesn’t want to create the most beer; it wants to create the best beer.
Third Dimension Brewing (coming soon-fall 2017)
As Kannapolis’ first downtown brewery, Third Dimension will bring a beer production site with a taproom that will produce more than 200 barrels of beer each month.
MINT HILL, NC
Barking Duck Brewing Company
This small nanobrewery concocting double batches on a 1/2-barrel system is the brainchild of former college roommates Josh Carl and Jacob Reynolds. Regulars return for the house favorites, like the flagship Banamber.
33 Brewing Company (coming soon)
A family owned and operated micro-brewery, 33 Brewing Company's beers are brewed in a custom-designed and manufactured, fire-brewed, 10-barrel brewhouse. The brewery is designed in the style of an old-world European brewery.
Ghostface Brewing offers "spooky good" brews on tap, with a selection of rotating styles, including everything from a strawberry ale to a milk stout to the Banshee IPA, named for Cinemax's "Banshee" that was filmed in the area. The taproom and brewpub feature tastings and full pours on-site, growlers to-go and flatbread pizza prepared by Davidson Pizza Company.
Lake Norman Brewing Company
The concept of Lake Norman Brewing Company revolves around its proximity to the lake and the vitality it represents. This nanobrewery produces specialty brews, like the Man Overboard IPA and the Wakeboard Wit, one small batch at a time.
New Sarum Brewing Company
Born in the heart of downtown Salisbury, North Carolina, New Sarum Brewing Company derives its name from the original settlement name of Salisbury’s Sister City—“Old Sarum” England. They strive to refashion historical methods of creating consistent quality handcrafted beer in an old meets new style with modern ingredients
Newgrass Brewing Co.
Newgrass Brewing Co. is a Belgian and hop-forward inspired seven-barrel brewpub located in historic Uptown Shelby, North Carolina. The facility where the brewery is located is over 100 years old (built in 1909) that previously housed the Hudson Department Store.
The Dreamchasers’s Brewery
The Dreamchasers’s Brewery, the first brewery in Waxhaw, is an award-winning microbrewery, specializing in ales, pilsners and stouts.
FORT MILL, SC
Full Spectrum Brewing Co.
Part nanobrewery, part CrossFit gym, Full Spectrum Brewing Co. was created to combine owner Charles Bergman's love of fitness and craft beer. The brewery offers a variety of craft beers named after colors on the color spectrum.
Located on a small farm in Lancaster County, Benford Brewing is South Carolina's first operating agricultural brewery. From utilizing spring well water in the beer to the livestock helping with the spent grains, the 30-barrel brewery and farm are a great match.
ROCK HILL, SC
Legal Remedy Brewing Co.
In 2015, Legal Remedy Brewing Co. converted a vacant Rock Hill, South Carolina, auto dealership into a custom craft brewery and brewpub. Founded by a lawyer, a landscape architect, two bankers and a computer guy, Legion offers a full-service restaurant with beer brewed on the premises. With more than 11,000 square feet of interior and exterior space, the brewery houses a 17-barrel brewing system along with two smaller brewing systems, which can collectively produce up to 10,000 barrels of beer per year.
BREWERIES IN PLANNING
The following breweries are either in planning or have not yet determined or finalized a location. Check back frequently for updates on new breweries opening in the Charlotte region.
- Fat Head’s Brewery
- Hatchet Head Brewing Company
- Dukbone Brewing
LOSO (LOWER SOUTH END)
GoodRoad CiderWorks (coming soon-winter 2016)
GoodRoad CiderWorks is a New World cidery honoring the tradition of Old World cider-making through artisanal ciders and meads. Their three core will be dry, semi-dry and English ciders. In addition, they will produce specialty ciders whose ingredients will include hops, fruits and herbs/spices. Through a partnership with a New Hampshire orchard, they will also produce true "heirloom apple" ciders.
Red Clay CiderWorks
Red Clay CiderWorks is Charlotte's first hard cider producer, crafting small-batch ciders from apples sourced right here in North Carolina. Red Clay makes quality hard cider from local ingredients supporting local and regional growers while creating a refreshing cider that’s not too sweet.
CHARLOTTE REGIONAL CIDERIES
Windy Hill Orchard & Cider Mill
This family-owned and operated boutique apple orchard and hard cider producer is open every fall from mid-August to December and features award-winning apple ciders. Guests can pick their own apples, fresh-pressed apple cider, freshly made apple products and much more.
LOSO (LOWER SOUTH END)
Doc Porter’s Distillery
The distillery prides itself on grain-to-glass spirits, and is best known for its vodka, made from North Carolina wheat that is milled on site. The owners are working on homegrown gin and whiskey recipes.
Great Wagon Road Distilling Company
Not only is Great Wagon Road the oldest distillery in Mecklenburg County; it’s also the first one in North Carolina to have its own bar, The Broken Spoke. The owner, a Kildare, Ireland, native Ollie Mulligan, prides himself on adding Irish hospitality to the handcrafted cocktail mission and Southern atmosphere.
Dragon Moonshine Company
At this distillery, all production is done all in-house, making it a complete grain-to-glass distillery that uses only locally sourced ingredients. The focus on local extends to the location of the distillery, which is housed in a renovated NoDa warehouse called Area 15, an incubator for micro businesses in Charlotte.
Seven Jars Distillery (coming soon)
Products from the Seven Jars line, which include supplies for creating your own craft beer, fine ciders and wine, are available at Seven Jar’s current location on Brookshire Boulevard in Charlotte. When the distillery, which is currently under construction, opens soon it will focus on producing exceptional distilled spirits that incorporate vintage recipes.
CHARLOTTE REGIONAL DISTILLERIES
Muddy River Distillery
This Belmont-based distillery is famous for its varieties of homegrown rum, which incorporate premium ingredients, handcrafted recipes and custom-built stills. Try the Spiced Carolina Rum, Queen Charlotte’s Reserve, the Coconut Carolina Rum and more.
Southern Grace Distilleries
The team at Southern Grace Distilleries is committed to crafting small-batch moonshine and whiskey. Try the Sun Dog 130 Uncut North Carolina Moonshine Corn Whiskey, which has won four medals including the gold at the San Diego Spirits completion.
KING'S MOUNTAIN, NC
Southern Artisan Spirits
(currently no taproom)
Located in Kings Mountain, North Carolina, Southern Artisan Spirits is dedicated to the revitalization of the lost art of craft distillation. Kings Mountain was the first community in the U.S. to vote itself legally dry in October 1874; however, distilleries began to pop up in the county in the latter half of the 19th century. SAS is the third legal distillery in the state. They have plans to add a taproom in the future.
*Mileage is calculated from the Charlotte Convention Center, located at 501 S. College St. in Uptown.
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