National Beer Day may be April 7th, but we think beer should be celebrated all year long, especially when it is made by local craft brewers. Local breweries are all one of a kind and the people running them have a real passion for what they do. And while breweries seem to be popping up everywhere around the country, they are nothing new to the Berkshires. In fact, there have been a variety of craft breweries here for over two decades! That means the brewers have had many years to perfect their craft and bring visitors of the area some of the best craft beers out there. From lagers to stouts, porters and IPAs, our craft breweries are always working on their next best beer.
In addition to the opinion that craft beers are typically more delicious and unique than nationally recognized beers, when you purchase a craft beer made at a local brewery, you may be helping to support a family putting their child through college or paying their mortgage. That's pretty special.
Visiting breweries is a great pastime for those looking to find their new favorite flavor, enjoying themselves with friends, and even touring the brewery to learn more about how their favorite craft beers are produced. Are you planning a visit to the Berkshires and enjoy craft beers? Then check out these four breweries* and find your new favorite brew!
6 Best Craft Breweries in the Berkshires
1. Berkshire Brewing Company
Located in South Deerfield, the Berkshire Brewing Company has been supplying the area with delicious small-batch ales and lagers for over 20 years. They are proud to serve unfiltered, unpasteurized, and zero-added chemicals or preservatives brews to locals and visitors alike. The brewery offers tours on Saturdays and flight tastings in their tap room Thursdays – Sundays. The selection of craft beers changes with the seasons so there is always something new to try no matter when you decide to visit. And if you enjoy the beers you sample at the breweries, there are many local retailers in Berkshire County that carry their canned beers so you can take some home with you!
2. Wandering Star Craft Brewery
If you're a fan of sports like cricket, soccer, or rugby, then you're going to love weekends at Wandering Star Craft Brewery in Pittsfield. You'll often find these popular European sports on the televisions there for visitors to watch while sampling their variety of craft beers. They are open on weekends and special holidays for tours, tastings, and purchases. And if you're heading to dinner at a Berkshires restaurant after your visit to the brewery, you might just find one of their brews on tap so you can enjoy it some more!
3. Barrington Brewery & Restaurant
Speaking of Berkshire restaurants, head over to Great Barrington and enjoy a meal and barn brewed craft beers at Barrington Brewery & Restaurant. Open every day, their food menu and beer menu change with the seasons so you know you're getting everything fresh and delicious. In fact, many of their food dishes use the flavors of their beers to give them a little something extra and unique. Just about everything on the menu is homemade; and did we mention that they use solar energy to brew their beers?! It is a truly unique dining experience that we highly recommend. And bonus, if you're visiting in the summer, you can even bring your dog along if you sit outside in their outdoor beer garden!
4. Big Elm Brewing
Live music and craft beer equal the perfect match. Find both at Big Elm Brewing in Sheffield and get access to some "Taproom Only" releases you can't find anywhere else. Open Thursday – Sundays, with brewery tours on Saturdays & Sundays, Big Elm offers fun, lively experiences for customers to enjoy. Between their Cabin Fever parties in the winter, beer and yoga sessions throughout the year, and live music just about every weekend, there is always something entertaining going on at this local favorite. Add this brewery to your list of things to do in Berkshires, you'll thank us later.
5. Shire Breu-Hous
As one of the newest breweries to pop-up in the Berkshires, Shire Breu-Hous in Dalton is not only an awesome spot to sample incredible craft beers, but it is also a favorite spot to grab something to eat. Opened in the summer of 2017, Shire is the result of two childhood friends who shared a common passion for home-brewing that wanted to make it their life's work. Serving up a classic brewpub menu and a variety of specialty beers, this brewery is a great place for families and friends to gather during a visit to the Berkshires.
6. Bright Ideas Brewing
After wandering through the expansive works of art found at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Arts, what could be better than sitting down to taste some amazing works of art in the form of craft beers? That's right, nothing! Located on the campus of MASS MoCA, Bright Ideas Brewing in North Adams has a fun taproom for customers to hang out. Offering some of the most unique craft beers in the Berkshires, as they put it "traditional beers for the modern age", this is definitely worth adding to your list of Berkshire breweries to visit.
Breweries in the Berkshires are unlike others that you've visited before. And the great thing about them is that they are all within a quick drive from The Inn at Stockbridge. So when you're staying with us, consider adding these craft breweries to your Berkshires bucket list. And hey, if beer and cheese is more your style than wine and cheese, feel free to bring back your favorite new brew to the Inn and enjoy it during our evening guest reception and tell us all about it!
*As always, please exercise best judgment and drink responsibly. Do not drink and drive. If you plan on visiting these breweries during your stay at The Inn at Stockbridge, please consider having a designated driver or taking an Uber, Lyft, or taxi to and from the breweries to ensure safe travel for yourself, your fellow guests, and others on the road.