Baltimore houses many historical places and sights. During the day, visitors can drop by any of Baltimore’s public markets or learn more about American icon Babe Ruth and the origin of the national anthem. While at night, they can drop by breweries and enjoy a pint or two.
The city has some of the best breweries in Baltimore and for good reason. Through experimentation and the recipe-making process, it’s no wonder many beer lovers return to their favorite breweries in the city and get a chance to bring them home. So, in this article, we narrowed down the 13 best breweries in the city.
Not wanting to get into the family business, Dave Benfield followed his passion of becoming a brewer. Since then, he founded DuClaw Brewing after starting brewpubs then going into bottling and canning, so DuClaw gets more traction.
The brewery’s fan-favorite beer is Sweet Baby Jesus. It’s a chocolate peanut butter porter with a 6.2% ABV. It’s a nutty, malty flavor paired with Fuggle and Goldings hops, giving it its smooth and dry finish. The beer got recognition in the GABF, winning a bronze medal in 2011, making it one of the go-to best breweries in Baltimore.
Most East Coast states, DC, Canada, and France can get the chance to try their signature beers. Also, you can support DuClaw by buying merchandise from their online shop.
The National Beer Company, its original brewer, brewed National Bohemian (Natty Boh as locals would call it) in 1885. Natty Boh experienced highs and lows as the original brewer closed down for the prohibition and that it had to close down between the ‘90s-2010s. However, not all was lost when the LA-based Pabst Brewing Company took over brewing Baltimore’s official beer saving it from extinction.
Beer lovers love the lightness of the Natty Boh and its grainy and sweet corn taste. The Bohemian Pilsner has a 4.6% ABV.
Heavy Seas Beer
It was all thanks to Hugh Sisson that Maryland allowed brewpubs to operate in the state since 1989. The Sisson’s pub initially was his father’s, and his father left him the business to run. Drawing experience from his time in England, he established Sisson’s as the main brewpub in Maryland in the early ‘80s. Even until now, Heavy Seas Beer is a premier destination for locals and visitors and is considered one of the best breweries in Baltimore.
The flagship all-year-rounder Loose Cannon is popular among visitors and tourists alike. Its fruity taste coupled with the Simcoe, Centennial, and Palisade hops makes for a fragrant IPA. The IPA boasts a 7.25% ABV.
Visit their taproom in Halethorpe, Maryland, where you can get a pint or two of their freshest beers. Pizza and other American favorites are available on their Pieces of Eight Pizza bus for those who want to eat while enjoying their beer.
Black Flag Brewing Co.
The Black Flag Brewing Co. shies away from convention and wants to stand out by brewing beers by making their beers not fit in a category. According to them, they’re the first production brewery in Columbia since 2015.
Those in the Metropolitan Maryland area should drop by Black Flag and try their signature Flagship IPA. It has a dank and citrusy flavor with a hint of bitterness, which makes the beer a popular choice among visitors. The signature Black Flag beer has a 6.6% ABV.
Hysteria Brewing Company
Like many brewer stories, Hysteria Brewing Company started with a single batch, and it just blew up from there. The founders call themselves mad scientists, hoping to go beyond what brewers before them did with craft beer. They’re also community-oriented, wanting to integrate the community in every part of their brewery that they want to become proud of what they’ve crafted at home.
The Columbia-based brewing company wowed its visitors’ tastebuds with their Trash Panda IPA. With a 7.2% ABV, they proudly call the IPA as their “beautiful, little baby trash panda.” To create its signature taste, they use Mosaic, Simcoe, and Citra hops. Plus, according to Hysteria, the IPA has a juicy, hazy, and citrusy flavor.
Bookworms and trivia players can enjoy their stay in the Hysteria taproom since they have Books On Tap every first Wednesday of the month and trivia nights on Wednesdays.
Independent Brewing Co.
Located in Bel Air, Maryland, Independent Brewing Co. is the leading production brewing company in Hartford County. They have a variety of beers, and only 26 get featured in a short period. Plus, they ensure that any beer they serve is gluten-free!
For those who want some grub while drinking their beers, they have a daily selection of food trucks in their establishment.
The Carpe Diem IPA is the fan-favorite in Independent Brewing Co. It boasts an 8.1% ABV.
Diamondback Brewing Company
The three head honchos/founders of Diamondback Brewing Company lead the pack of brewers, chefs, a marketing manager, and a cat. The founders, Colin, Francis, and Tom, kicked off the Diamondback Brewing Company journey in 2016. It was in 2017 where they saw their popularity skyrocket by widening the network and launched their beer festival, Greener Fest.
The Green Machine is the popular brew among their many selections. It includes three hops, Citra, Ella, and Comet. Their signature 6.2% ABV IPA tickles the taste buds with a citrusy flavor with hints of bitterness. The brewing company notes that it has a “soft, pillowy mouthfeel.”
You can support the team at Diamondback by buying their merch or availing of a membership and gift cards in their online shop.
If you’re in Pigtown or any nearby area, you should visit Suspended Brewing. Even if they’re a small-town tavern and brewery, they do their best in making a significant impact socially and ecologically. The brewery doesn’t have any signature beers, but according to some visitors, they love 22 Hours Stout.
They partner with Chef Rey Eugenio serving Filipino food via a food truck or a pop-up to its patrons. Fun fact: he serves vegan food, so you can check it out while you’re there.
Their brewery is family-friendly and dog friendly too.
Monument City Brewing Company
Brothers Ken and Matt decided to open their brewery, Mountain City Brewing Company, after sharing stories and experiences about brewing and drinking beer. Through their hard work and experience, they’ve crafted beer that has been enjoyed by many. Since then, they’ve become one of the best breweries in Baltimore.
Don’t miss out on the 51 Rye while you’re there, even if it’s available all year round. As for the seasonals, grab a pint or a can of NoBo. For the 51 Rye, you can taste an earthy flavor blended with the citrusy hops. It has a 6.5% ABV. Meanwhile, the NoBo gets its trademark tropical flavor from the Citra & El Dorado hops, and the 6.5% ABV IPA feels pillowy.
Flying Dog Brewery
The Flying Dog Brewery started when its founders gathered in a hotel after climbing the deadliest mountain. Since the 90s, they’ve created a buzz among locals and visitors.
They don’t hold back at all and are weird in every aspect of their brewery, wanting to stand out against other Maryland breweries. For example, their most popular beer, the Raging Bitch, is the all-year-round favorite. Like its name, it delivers a sharp taste thanks to its hops and citrus aromas that it excites taste buds. According to the breweries, enjoy a bottle or can of the 8.3% ABV Belgian IPA with BBQ wings or cool ranch Doritos while binging something new on a streaming service.
Union Craft Brewing
As one of the best breweries in Baltimore, Union Craft Brewing knows and runs on the idea that Beer Unites! That’s what keeps them going since 2011, and it has become one of the go-to breweries in the city. Since its inception, they’ve produced their most beloved Pale Ale, the Duckpin Pale Ale.
Its hops are a mix of Pacific Northwest and New Zealand origins that gives its tropical and citrus taste and aroma. Plus, it has a strong malt, too, giving it its trademark flavor. The Baltimore original has a 5.5% ABV.
Full Tilt Brewing
Cousins Nick Fertig and Dan Baumiller, established Full Tilt Brewing after years and years of appreciating and brewing their beers with Ethel (their brewing system). Since meeting Stephen Demczuk, they knew they would be taken in for a ride because it would launch their brewery. After promotional work, marketing, and crafting new recipes, they’ve established themselves as one of the best breweries in Baltimore.
Many of their patrons can’t get enough of their Baltimore Pale Ale. Fortunately, everyone who’s in town can get a pint or a can, and it’s available all-year-round. It has a 5.9% ABV.
Those who are regulars of the Full Tilt Brewing can get an exclusive membership club. They will get free a pour when joining or renewing, get exclusive access to dinners, releases, and events, and receive an exclusive t-shirt and mug, among other things.
Jailbreak Brewing Company
Jailbreak Brewing Company started in 2013 and was operational by 2014. They have a mission of providing beers that will help their customers escape from the mundane.
Their Hefeweizen Feed the Monkey beer is the most popular brew. It’s inspired by the German style of brewing beer, by including cloves of banana with hints of citrus to balance out the flavor and aroma. The beer has 5.6% ABV. You can enjoy this beer all year round in their taproom or on their 6-pack or case.
Fan of trivia night? They have hacker trivia every second Thursday of the month and scheduled brewery tours.