Skip to main content

Explore Asheville N.C.’s Vibrant Beer Scene

Asheville Beer Book
Love craft beer so much that you’d fashion a vacation around it? You’re in luck. Asheville, North Carolina, which has claimed the title “Beer City U.S.A.” several years running thanks to the Examiner’s online poll, provides a mega thrill for beer lovers. With its cool downtown, 11 microbreweries, scenic beauty and a plethora of outdoor adventures, Asheville is a no-brainer when it comes to a guys’ fun-filled getaway.

The southern town, known as the home of George Vanderbilt’s Biltmore Estate, has become such a hot spot in the world of brews that New Belgium is building a brewery in the happening River Arts District and Sierra Nevada plans to jump on the bandwagon with a new brewery of its own in Mills River, just south of Asheville. Plus, the new Oskar Blues Brewery recently opened in nearby Brevard.

Related Videos

Oscar Wong got the ball rolling in 1994 when he founded Highland Brewing Company in Asheville. Cooking Light Magazine recently gave nod to Highland’s Oatmeal Porter as one of the top 50 American craft beers. A couple of years ago Highland expanded by offering a tasting room to sample the latest varieties and listen to live music.

When you arrive in town, kick off on a tour with Asheville Brews Cruise. Voted one of the top seven brewery tours in the country, Asheville Brews Cruise takes participants to Highland Brewing, Pisgah Brewing Company, Asheville Brewing Company,
as well as an assortment of local pubs and bars. The Hotel Indigo and Haywood Park Hotel are both located in the downtown area and within easy walking distance of where the tours originate.

Another notable stop: Bruisin’ Ales at 66 Broadway. Owners Jason and Julie Atallah opened in 2006 and feature more than 1000 brews from around the world. While there, pick up a copy of Anne Fitten Glenn’s newly released “Asheville Beer: An Intoxicating History of Mountain Brewing.”

Editors' Recommendations

Welcome to Cervecería Mahina: The World’s Most Remote Brewery
119589 autosave v1 mahaina2

There are few destinations left untouched by the craft beer boom. There’s a brewery in “end of the world” Patagonia. The remote African island of Mauritius has a solid beer bar. Even Antarctica’s Tatty Flag offers occasional craft options. But, one island brewery in the middle of the South Pacific Ocean claims to be the world’s most remote.

Assuming you don’t happen to be vacationing on Easter Island — and, frankly, what Americans do? — just getting to Cervecería Mahina requires some doing. First, you’ll need to get to the Chilean capital of Santiago. Then, you’ll need to board a flight that flies nearly six hours west over nothing but deep, open ocean. It’s roughly equidistant (2,400 miles) from Tahiti and the South American mainland. The journey there is nearly the equivalent of flying coast-to-coast across the United States. At some point over the Pacific Ocean, when it seems you’ve reached the literal middle of nowhere, tiny, 63-square-mile Easter Island emerges on the horizon.

Read more
Greetings from Asbury Park: Where to Eat, Drink, and Play in the Jersey Shore’s Hippest Town
asbury park, castle, jersey shore

Asbury Park has come a long way from the days that Bruce Springsteen was getting his fortune told on the boardwalk and playing for the crowds at the Stone Pony. Gone are (most) of the dilapidated hotels and other buildings, having made way for fresh, high-end accommodations of all sorts. New restaurants and bars have opened and now thousands flock to the beach-side town every year to do more than just pay homage to the Boss.

Perhaps the best part about AP? It’s close as hell to New York City. New Jersey Transit runs multiple trains a day down the shore, getting you there in between 90 minutes and two hours, depending on the time of day you go. For $32.50, you can sit back, relax, and not have to worry about battling shore traffic or paying tolls getting to and from real life.

Read more
Meet Betsy, the Beer that Tastes Better at 35,000 Feet

Can beer actually taste better when it’s 35,000 feet in the air?

When you take off on an airplane, your taste buds actually lose their ability to function correctly. Food tastes more bland and your perception of salty and sweet dramatically decline — some studies have said up to 30 percent — once you’ve reached cruising altitude. Maybe that’s the reason why airplane food tastes so disgusting — or not. The folks at the Hong Kong-based airline Cathay Pacific and Hong Kong Beer Co. teamed up to make sure that your tastebuds can still tell the difference between good and bad beer while up in the air.

Read more