Craft Breweries in Asheville NC
This page gives a brief overview of Asheville area microbreweries and the specialty beers each is best known for producing.
High gravity beer is a term used to label brews that exceed the standard 6% alcohol by volume for (most beer) brewed and served in the state of North Carolina. Breweries, taprooms and brew pubs indicate the exact amount of alcohol contained in a beer on menus or display boards. Some establishments will even serve high gravity beer in smaller glasses than the standard pint glass, encouraging beer lovers to consume high gravity beer in smaller servings.
This popular brewery and pizza place has two locations: one on Merrimon Avenue in North Asheville and another in Downtown Asheville at Coxe Avenue. Some local favorite craft brews include: Shiva, Ninja and Rocket Girl. Relax with a pitcher and watch the game at the Downtown location; or, see a movie in the theater while you eat at the North Asheville location. The Merrimon Avenue location is open from 11 a.m. – Midnight everyday and the Downtown Coxe Avenue location is open from Mon-Thurs. 11 a.m. – Midnight; Fri. 11 a.m. – 2 a.m.; Sat. Noon-2 a.m. and Sun. from Noon-Midnight.
Located in the Fairview (East) section of Asheville, this brewery is known for showcasing local musicians. The tasting room is open from 1- 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday. French Broad Beer most popular with locals includes the IPA and the Wee Heavy-er Scotch Style Ale (7%). Hours are 1-8 p.m. Mon. – Sat.
Also located in East Asheville, near Haw Creek, Highland Brewing Company is Asheville’s first local brewery. Every beer on Highland’s list is excellent. The brewery is known mainly for the Gaelic Ale and Saint Terese’s Pale Ale. Tasgall Ale (8%) is Highland’s high gravity beer and Cold Mountain is the best-known seasonal brew. The tasting room is open Thursday through Saturday from 4-8 p.m.
Green Man Ale was originally a brew pub: Jack of the Wood, on Patton Avenue in Downtown Asheville. In 2010, new ownership spurred growth in the list of handcrafted brews, while maintaining the Green Man label. Green man is known for producing IPA, ESB, Pale and Porter beers of excellent quality. Jack of the Wood opens at 4 p.m. and closes at 2 p.m.
Located in nearby Black Mountain, Pisgah Brewing Company taps are in many Asheville establishments. Pisgah’s IPA and Pale Ale have been popular choices for locals for years. The taproom is open Mon., Tues, & Wed. 4-9 p.m.; Thurs. &Fri. 2 p.m. – Midnight; Sat. 12 p.m. – Midnight and Sun. 2-9 p.m. Pisgah Brewing Company also features a selection of local and regional musicians inside the taproom and off-site.
Though the Thirsty Monk was designed to be Asheville’s first Belgian Beer Bar, the list of beers on tap now includes American handcrafted beer, too. Thirsty Monk serves food, tap and bottled beer. The Pub boasts of 62 taps with a New Belgium Dig and Avery Karma as the current selections of Belgium Beer. Thirsty Monk also serves high gravity brews and features performances by local musicians. It’s located in Downtown Asheville, on the corner of Coxe and Patton Avenues. Hours are: Mon.-Thurs. 4 p.m. – Midnight; Fri. 3 p.m. – 2 a.m.; Sat. 2 p.m. – 2 a.m. and Sun. 3-10 p.m.
One of Asheville’s newest hot spots, The LAB, is a microbrewery known for serving Belgian White Ale, LAB IPA, and Chocolate Stout. Open-air patio style seating, local music, and an excellent menu make the LAB a great place for dinner or a pint. The LAB is located at the bottom of Lexington Avenue in Downtown Asheville and is open from 11:30 – 2 a.m. Monday through Saturday and 12- 2 a.m. Sunday.
Opened in 2009, this new microbrewery operates out of The Lobster Trap restaurant. The intention of the brew master, Billy Klingel, was to create a brew that was complementary to oysters. The emphasis in this type of brew is roasted barley and chocolate malts. Beer lovers will find the UpsideDown Brown is a good example of this, along with the Moonstone Stout, which is actually brewed with oysters. The Lobster Trap is open everyday at 5 p.m. and is located at 35 Patton Avenue, in Downtown Asheville.
Located in the heart of the River Arts District, downstairs in the Wedge Building, this notorious brewery is also known as the art bar. It is open from Mon.-Thurs. 4-10 p.m., Friday 3-10 p.m. and Sun. 2 – 10 p.m. The Wedge offers local artists, visitors and neighbors a place to have a pint and talk. The Wedge’s indoor tasting room is tiny. Most guests sit on the large front porch or the patio adorned with hand wrought iron sculpture and fencing. Eat some complimentary peanuts and catch some local music on the patio. Popular microbrews include: Belgian Abbey Ale (7.2%), Iron Rail IPA (7.3%) and Russian Imperial Stout (9.3%). The Wedge serves a long and changing list of high gravity brews.