The 50 Best New England Breweries

The 50 best breweries in New England right now.  While it’s really all about the beer, additional considerations were given to distribution reach, influence, taproom vibe, and artwork.

  1. Tree House (Charlton, MA)  Founded by Dean Rohan, Nate Lanier, and Damien Goudreau in Monson, MA in 2011.
    Beers to Try: Julius, Haze, Green, Doppelganger, Double Shot, Sap, Alter Ego, King Julius.
  2.  Hill Farmstead  (Greensboro, VT)  Founded by Shaun Hill in 2010.
    Beers to Try: Edward, Susan, Society and Solitude, Double Nelson, Earl
  3. Bissell Brothers (Portland, ME)  Founded by Noah and Peter Bissell in 2011.
    Beers to Try: The Substance, Swish, Reciprocal, Here’s to Feeling Good All the Time
  4.  Trillium (Boston & Canton MA) Founded by JC and Esther Tetreault in 2013.
    Beers to Try: Congress Street, Fort Point, DDG Melcher Street, Vicinity, Mettle, PM Dawn, Scaled, Cutting Tiles
  5.  Vitamin Sea Brewing (Weymouth, MA) Founded by Dino Funari in 2019.
    Beers to Try: Due North, Kettle Charge, Greetings from Weymouth, Just Another T-Shirt Shop
  6. The Alchemist (Stowe, VT)  Founded by John and Jen Kimmich in Waterbury Vermont in 2003.
    Beers to Try: Heady Toppy, Focal Banger, Crusher, Luscious, Rapture
  7. Allagash (Portland, ME) Founded by Rob Todd in 1995.
    Beers to Try: White, Curieux, Tripel, Black, Farm to Face, Saison
  8.  Jack’s Abbey (Framingham, MA)  Founded in 2011 by Jack, Eric, and Sam Hendler.
    Beers to Try: Hoponius Union, Smoke & Dagger, Kiwi Rising, House Lager, Mass Rising, Framinghammer
  9. Maine Beer Co (Freeport, ME)  Founded by David and Dan Kleban in Portland in 2009.
    Beers to Try: Lunch, Dinner, Woods and Water, Peeper, MO
  10.  Burlington Beer Co (Winooski, VT)  Founded by Joe Lemnah in 2014.
    Beers to Try: It’s Complicated Being a Wizard, Uncanny Valley, Orbital Elevator, Elaborate Metaphor
  11. Night Shift Brewing (Boston, MA) Founded by Rob Burns, Mike O’Mara and Michael Oxton in Everett in 2012.
    Beers to Try: Whirlpool, Santilli, Awake, Fractalizer, Craigerator
  12.   Lawson’s Finest Liquids (Waitstaff, VT)  Founded by Sean and Karen Lawson in 2008.
    Beers to Try: Sip of Sunshine, Double Sunshine, Super Session IPA, Fayston Maple Imperial Stout, Hopzilla
  13.  Long Live Beerworks (Providence, RI) Founded by Armando Dedona in 2016.
    Beers to Try: The All Seeing Eye, Through These Eyes, Attitude, Wesside, Hopeless Romantic
  14. Fiddlehead (Shelburne, VT)  Founded by Matt Cohen is 2011.
    Beers to Try: Fiddlehead IPA, Second Fiddle, Mastermind, Hodad, Overstable
  15.  Sam Adams (Boston, MA)  Founded by Jim Koch and Rhonda Khalman in Cincinnati, OH in 1984.  Officially known as Boston Beer Company, which also owns Dogfish Head, Truly, Twisted Tea, and Angry Orchard.  Note: The majority of Sam Adams is in fact brewed outside of New England, but it felt weird leaving them off this list.
    Beers to Try: Boston Lager, Octoberfest, Summer Ale, Winter Lager, ’76
  16.  New England Brewing Co (Woodbridge, CT) Founded by Rob Leonard in 2002.
    Beers to Try: G-Bot, Fuzzy Baby Ducks, Coriolis, Imperial Stout Trooper, Sea Hag
  17.  New Park Brewing (West Hartford, CT) Founded by John Doyle, Alex Dee and Tom Atkins in 2017.
    Beers to Try: Spectrum, Cloudscape, Blender: Raspberry, Double Cloud, Headband
  18.  Foam Brewers (Burlington, VT)  Founded by Todd Haire, Robert Grim, Dani Casey, Sam Keane, and Jon Farme in 2016.
    Beers to Try: Built to Spill, Pavement, Experimental Jet Set, Galaxie 500
  19. Tilted Barn (Exeter, RI)  Founded by Matt and Kara Richardson in 2014.
    Beers to Try: The Chosen One, The Other One, Cactus, Violet, Milo’s Phoenix, Peeptoad Pale Ale
  20.  Definitive Brewing (Portland, ME) Founded by Dylan Webber in 2017.
    Beers to Try: Definitive Ale, Behind the Light, Stuffed, Float
  21.  Harpoon  (Boston, MA & Windsor, VT)  Founded by Russ Heissner, Dan Kenary, Rich Doyle, and George Ligeti in Boston in 1986.
    Beer to Try: Harpoon IPA, UFO White, Winter Warmer, Camp Wannamango
  22.  Fox Farm (Salem, CT)  Founded by Zack Adams in 2017.
    Beers to Try: Burst, Daylily, Allora, Vivid, Hearthbound, Double Burst, Graze, Dwell
  23.  Magic Hat (Burlington, VT) Founded by Bob Johnson and Alan Newman in 1994.  Acquired by North American Breweries (now FIFCO) in 2010.
    Beers to Try: #9, Circus Boy, Blind Faith
  24.  Lord Hobo (Woburn, MA)  Founded by Daniel Lanigan in 2014.
    Beers to Try: Boomsauce, Glorious, Hobo Life, Consolation Prize, Virtuoso, 617
  25.  Mighty Squirrel (Waltham, MA)  Founded by Naveen Pawar and Henry Manice in 2015.
    Beers to Try: Cloud Candy, Cosmic Distortion, Strawberry Smoovy, Sour Face, Dear Kelly
  26.  Foundation (Portland, ME)  Founded by Joel & Christie Mahaffey and John & Tina Bonney in 2012.
    Beers to Try: Epiphany, Venture, Cosmic Bloom, Galacticon, Afterglow
  27.  Stellwagen (Marshfield, MA)  Founded by Mike Snowdale in 2018.
    Beers to Try: Invisible Airwaves, Shockwaves, 12:30 Flight, Cymbals
  28.  Proclamation Ale Company (Warwick, RI)  Founded by Dave Witham in West Kingston, RI in 2013.
    Beers to Try: Tendril, Derivative, Sun Destroyer, The Stalk
  29.  Exhibit ‘A’ (Framingham, MA)  Founded by Matthew Steinberg in 2016.
    Beers to Try: Cat’s Meow, Hair Raiser, Sunday Paper, Wandering Thoughts
  30.  Long Trail (Bridgewater Corners, VT)  Founded by Andy Pherson in 1989.
    Beers to Try: Long Trail Ale, Limbo IPA, Green Blaze, Double Bag, Space Juice
  31.  Austin Street (Portland, ME)  Founded by Jake Austin and Will Fuller in 2013.
    Beers to Try: Neverender, Patina Pale, Florens, Six Grain, Yann Bandana
  32.  Lone Pine (Portland, ME)  Founded by John Paul and Tom Madden in 2015.
    Beers to Try: Oh-J, Tessellation, Portland Pale Ale, T-Shirt Cannon, Brightside
  33.  Beer’d Brewing Company (Stonington, CT) Founded by Aaren Simoncini in 2015.
    Beers to Try: Dogs & Boats, Hobbit Juice, Frank & Berry, 8 Days a Week, Dogs vs Shinobi
  34. Foley Brothers (Brandon, VT)  Founded by Patrick and Daniel Foley in 2012.
    Beer to Try: Prospect, Fair Maiden, Pieces of Eight
  35.  Clown Shoes (Boston, MA)  Founded by Gregg Berman in 2009.  Acquired by Mass Bay Brewing Company (makers of Harpoon) in 2017.
    Beers to Try: Space Cake, Galactica, Chocolate Sombereo, Blaecorn Unidragon
  36.  Widowmaker (Braintree, MA)  Founded by Ryan Lavery and Colin Foley in 2017.
    Beers to Try: Ecstasy of Gold, Blue Comet, Martin and Lewis Milkshake, There’s No Wrong Way
  37.  Lamplighter (Cambridge, MA)  Founded by Cayla Marvil and AC Jones in 2015.
    Beers to Try: Birds of a Feather, Rabbit Rabbit, Werewolves of Cambridge, Cuppa, Major Tom

  38.  Stoneface (Newington, NH)  Founded by Peter Beauregard in 2013.
    Beers to Try: Stoneface IPA, Full Clip, Mozaccalypse, Hopulization, Pink Duct Tape
  39.  Upper Pass (South Royalton, VT)  Founded by Chris Perry and Andrew Puchalik in Tunbridge, VT in 2015.
    Beers to Try: First Drop, Cloud Drop, Waimea Waves
  40.  Smuttynose (Hampton, NH)  Founded by Peter Egelston in 1994.  Purchased by Runnymede Investments in 2018.
    Beers to Try: Finestkind IPA, Old Brown Dog Ale, Robust Porter
  41.  Good Fire (Portland, ME)  Founded by David Redding in 2017.
    Beers to Try: Prime, Waves, Hydro, Meta, CMYK
  42.  Medusa (Hudson, MA)  Founded by Keith Antul, Keith Sullivan, and Tom Sutter in 2015
    Beers to Try: Laser Cat, Luminary, Hidden City, ACTIVATE!, Citra Legacy
  43.  Two Roads (Stratford, CT)  Founded by Phil Markowski, Brad Hittle, Peter Doering, and Clement Pellani in 2012.
    Beers to Try: Road 2 Ruin, Lil Heaven Session IPA, Two Juicy, Espressway, Worker’s Comp
  44.  Start Line Brewing (Hopkinton, MA)  Founded by Ted Twinney in 2017.
    Beers to Try: Hop Load Hazy, Hop Load Citra, Hazelnut Cold Brewed Coffee Stout, Craic Irish Red Ale 
  45.  Four Quarters (Winooski, VT)  Founded by Brian Eckert in 2014.
    Beers to Try: Phaze, Ghosts in the Sky, Little Umbrellas, Spectra
  46.  Counterweight (Hamden, CT) Founded by Matt Westfall in 2016.
    Beers to Try: Headyway IPA, Crucial Mass, Spiral Architect, Vulture Culture
  47.  Shipyard (Portland, ME)  Founded by Fred Forsley and Alan Pugsley in Kennebunk, ME in 1994.  Also owns Sea Dog and Casco Bay.
    Beers to Try: Pumpkinhead Ale, Monkey Fist, American Pale Ale
  48.  Notch (Salem, MA)  Founded by Chris Lohring in 2010.
    Beers to Try: Left of the Dial, Session Pils, Raw Power
  49.  Aeronaut (Somerville, MA)  Founded by Ron Friedlander, Dan Rassi, and Ben Holmes in 2014.
    Beers to Try: A Year With Dr. Nandu, Hop Hop & Away, Imperial Galaxyc Cirrocumulus
  50.  Funky Bow (Lyman, ME)  Founded by Paul and Abraham Lorain in 2014.
    Beers to Try: So Folkin’ Hoppy IPA, Midnight Special, Jam Session, G-String

 

Honorable Mentions: Wormtown, Henry and Fran, Garrison City Beerworks, Banded Brewing, Red Clover, Amherst Brew Co, Spyglass, Brick and Feather, Greater Good, House of Fermentology, Mast Landing, Vanished Valley, Remnant, Wachusett,, Springdale, Idle Hands, Frost Beer Works, Canned Heat, Cambridge Brewing Company, Oxbow, Castle Island, Liquid Riot, Backlash, Great Rhythm, River Styx, Buttonwoods, Building 8, Dorchester Brewery, True North, Rising Tide, Brickyard Hollow, Geary, Bent Water

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