Charlotte is known as the Queen City and the darling of the South. It is understandable for people to call it queen because, in more than one decade, Charlotte already gave birth to over 20 breweries. Even though the beer scene in the city started a little late, the taste of its beers is never compromised.
If you are curious about the breweries’ peculiarities, below are the best of the best in Charlotte that you would surely give a crown for excellence.
1. Birdsong Brewing Company
Birdsong Brewing was founded in 2011, with couple Chris and Tara and co-worker Conor being the team behind the brewery’s foundation. The brewery was born out of the founder’s passion for crafting delicious beers for people to enjoy. Moreover, Birdsong prioritizes giving back to the community and helping the locals by getting involved in great causes.
As for the brewery itself, Birdsong’s taproom has a chill ambiance, with metalwork accents and decor of albums on the wall. It also has a full bar, where a variety of beers are on tap, as well as different cans and bottles are featured. Additionally, there is an outdoor patio with picnic tables and fire pits that is open for relaxation and gives the best neighborhood sights.
- Crowd Favorite: Jalapeño Pale Ale. A chili beer kicking with green pepper aroma with 5.5% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Higher Ground IPA
- Hop-py Note: Dog-friendly. Family-friendly. Free brewery tours.
- Fun Fact: Birdsong’s beer names are inspired by the albums displayed on its walls.
Hours: Open Mon-Thur 3pm-10pm, Fri & Sat 12pm-11pm, Sun 11am-8pm
2. Sycamore Brewing
Sycamore Brewing, owned by Sarah and Justin Brigham, was officially established in 2013 and opened its taproom doors in November 2014. Leaving its original location, Sycamore moved to a larger location boasting a big private space, a second level with a full bar, and a 10,000 square foot beer garden.
Currently, Sycamore Brewing is the largest Charlotte-born brewery, one of the top breweries in North Carolina, and is included in the top 50 brewpubs in the USA. Moreover, its beer garden is famous for being a top 2 Uber destination in Charlotte, serving tasty beers to locals and tourists alike.
- Crowd Favorite: Mountain Candy IPA. A beer with flavors of stone fruit and rainbow candy containing 7.5% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Juiciness
- Hop-py Note: Trivia Night. Sells Merchandise. Hosts Food Truck.
- Fun Fact: Sycamore Brewing will be opening a bar in the Charlotte-Douglas International Airport at the Terminal E extension by winter 2022.
Hours: Open Mon-Wed 4pm-9pm, Thur 4pm-10pm, Fri 2pm-10pm, Sat 12pm-10pm, Sun 12pm-7pm
Address: 2161 Hawkins St, Charlotte, NC 28203
3. NoDa Brewing Company
NoDa Brewing is an award-winning brewery in Charlotte with four active locations; The OG, the North End taproom, the CLT Airport brewpub, and NoDa Brewing Tapas. The brewery was established in 2011 by Suzie, Todd, and Chad and has been a local favorite ever since its opening.
NoDa Brewing has won a number of silver and gold medals in the Great American Beer Festival and the World Beer Cup since 2012. Its flagship porter, Coco Loco, is the beer that brought NoDa Brewing its first win. Moreover, the brewery has earned the Outstanding Philanthropic Small Business Award of the year 2018 for its philanthropic activities in helping the community of Charlotte.
- Crowd Favorite: Hop Drop ‘N Roll. A combination of strong hop and mild malt beer with 7.2% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Jam Session
- Hop-py Note: Hosts food trucks. Indoor and outdoor seating. Live music.
- Fun Fact: NoDa’s Hop Drop ’N Roll IPA won two gold medals from national U.S beer competitions.
Hours: Open Mon 12pm-10pm, Tue-Thur 4pm-9pm, Fri 3pm-10pm, Sat 12pm-10pm, Sun 12pm-8pm
Address: 2921 N Tryon St, Charlotte, NC 28206
4. The Olde Mecklenburg Brewery
Established in 2009, The Olde Mecklenburg, or OMB to locals, is an award-winning microbrewery serving word class beers in Charlotte. Its beers won several medals from the European Beer Star and Great American Beer Festivals, and the brewery itself won numerous Best Brewery awards.
The Olde Mecklenburg has the largest Biergarten in Charlotte. Its outdoor space proudly accommodates an 8-acre land and is surrounded by a lot of trees, including a 100-year-old oak tree. Its taproom features its award-winning brews as well as several wines and ciders on the house. Moreover, the taproom serves a wide selection of food items with vegetarian and gluten-free options on the menu.
- Crowd Favorite: Copper. A light amber ale with 4.8% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Captain Jack
- Hop-py Note: Dog-friendly patio. Family-friendly. Private event rentals.
- Fun Fact: The OMB has received a total of 22 awards for its beers and brewery.
Hours: Open Mon-Thur 11am-10pm, Fri & Sat 11am-11pm, Sun 10am-10pm
Address: 4150 Yancey Rd, Charlotte, NC 28217
5. Resident Culture Brewing Co.
Resident Culture is where the weird and the absurd are greatly recognized. The brewery’s concept came from the head brewer, Chris, and owners Amanda and Phillip Mclamb. They believe that Resident Culture should be a place not only for beer lovers but for every individual in the community, as they treat every customer like family.
Resident Culture is all about fun, good relationships, and great craft beers, Its South End taproom boasts a chic industrial environment with a full bar and a coffee shop. You can find distinct Resident Culture beers on tap, along with its signature batch cocktails.
- Crowd Favorite: Lightning Drops. A hazy New England IPA with 6.5% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Whatever You Feel Just Dance It
- Hop-py Note: Family-friendly. Dog-friendly. Monthly events.
- Fun Fact: Resident Culture will soon be opening The Gilded Cellar in South End; it will be an event space perfect for small and large private events.
Hours: Open Mon 7am – 4pm, Tues – Thur 7am – 11pm, Fri & Sat 7am – 2pm, Sun 7am – 10pm.
6. Divine Barrel Brewing
Drinking good beer with great people is a part of the experience you will enjoy at Divine Barrel Brewing. It is a community-driven microbrewery in Charlotte that focuses on crafting unique, drinkable beers for everyone. You can find a great variety of brews in this brewery, like wood-fermented wild sours, barrel-aged lagers, and more.
Divine Barrel’s taproom features 24 rotating beers on tap, a selection of wines, and a variety of non-alcoholic options. You can also find cans and bottles inside for quick grabs and kegs for large-quantity beer orders. Moreover, the brewery partners with food trucks where you can order food items to pair with your favorite brew.
- Crowd Favorite: Ice Cream Paint Job. A jammy and flavorful fruited sour with 4.6% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Cadillac Rainbows
- Hop-py Note: Family and dog-friendly. Wheelchair accessible. Parking lot parking.
- Fun Fact: Divine Barrel hosts a RunDBB event every Thursday where you can challenge yourself with 1 to 3 loops.
Hours: Open Mon 12pm-9pm, Tue & Wed 4pm-9pm, Thur 12pm-9pm, Fri & Sat 12pm-10pm, Sun 12pm-7pm
7. Devil’s Logic Brewing
Devil’s Logic carries a unique mantra: drink fresh or go to hell. That’s why it has crafted 22 taps of a wide selection of beers, including kombucha, cider, and wines, all made from fresh ingredients. You can enjoy them in the brewery’s spacious brick-walled taproom located in the Elizabeth neighborhood.
If beer and fresh air are what you need, Devil’s Logic has two outdoor patios wherein one is elevated for a great view of Uptown Charlotte. And as the brewery is still in the planning stage for its in-house kitchen project, there is a food truck daily serving outside the brewery so you can grab a bite while drinking.
- Crowd Favorite: Bang A Uey. A hazy New England pale ale with 5.5% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Get the Gose On the Berries.
- Fun Fact: Devil’s Logic is the winner of the 2022 World Beer Cup Komunity Kölsch.
Hours: Open Tue-Thur 3pm-10pm, Fri 12pm-11pm, Sat 11am-11pm, Sun 10am-8pm, Mon Closed
Address: 1426 E 4th St, Charlotte, NC 28204
8. Town Brewing Company
Town Brewing is the perfect place to find what you’re looking for in a brewery: a unique space, a creative menu, and delicious beers. You will find many out-of-the-box brews in Town Brewing, such as its Blue Razz Hard Seltzer which has a bright blue color and comes with a gummy worm.
Town Brewing has a large and open taproom that is best for groups. It features 20 distinct beers and hard seltzers on tap, with wines and non-alcoholics on the side. The place also has a sunny beer garden with a long table for you and your pals, as well as regular tables with umbrellas and side chairs.
- Crowd Favorite: Broken Tarted. A sour Berliner Weisse with 4.7% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: RP-1
- Hop-py Note: Trivia Night. Dog-friendly. Family-friendly. Curbside pickup.
- Fun Fact: Town Brewing has a running club called Run This Town.
Hours: Open Tue-Thur 4pm-10pm, Fri 2pm-11pm, Sat 12pm-11pm, Sun 11am-9pm, Mon Closed
Address: 800 Grandin Rd, Charlotte, NC 28208
9. Protagonist Beer
Operating as one of Charlotte’s humble breweries, Protagonist Beer has two active locations in the city. The NoDa Taproom is perfect if you want a casual place to drink: very chic, bursting with pastel colors, and made lively by little plants. It also has a small patio overlooking the sidewalk. Currently, it features CO2 and nitrogen-blended craft beers on tap, along with snacks for light nibbles.
On the other hand, if you want a classy, spacious, and modern place to sip your beer, the 20,000 sq. ft. LoSo taproom is perfect for you. It specializes in wood-fired pizzas and features Protgonists Beer’s signature brews. The LoSo taproom also has an extensive cocktail and wine list for non-beer drinkers.
- Crowd Favorite: Mercury. A tropical and citrusy IPA with 7% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Queen Charlotte
- Hop-py Note: Family-friendly. Live Music. Dog-friendly patio.
- Fun Fact: The original building of the Protagonist, NoDa, is an R&D nano-brewery.
Hours: Open Wed & Thur 4pm-10pm, Fri 4pm-11pm, Sat 12pm-11pm, Sun 12pm-7pm, Mon & Tue Closed
10. Heist Brewery
Founded in 2012, Heist Brewery is one of the first breweries in Charlotte. It originally focused on brewing Belgian and German-style brews but then changed its passion towards hazy IPAs, heavily fruited sours, and imperial stouts.
Currently, Heist Brewery has two active locations in Charlotte. The NoDa in North Davidson, and Barrel & Arts in Woodward Avenue. The NoDa location has a very cinematic taproom and chic industrial vibe. Its ceiling is high, and mostly everything is made of wood. While Barrel Arts boasts a rustic and artistic environment with barrel tables and paintings on the bricked walls.
- Crowd Favorite: Citraquench’l. A hoppy and hazy American IPA with 7.1% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Blurred Is the Word
- Hop-py Note: Vegan options. Live performance. Outdoor patio.
Hours: Open Mon 11am-10pm, Tue-Thur 11am-11pm, Fri & Sat 11am-12am, Sun 10am-10pm
11. Edge City Brewery
If you want to just relax over your beer in an open space, Edge City is the best. It has a lovely taproom dominated by clean white painted walls. Moreover, the place is full of natural lights coming from the floor-to-ceiling windows, and the modern decors are greatly accented by beautiful and leafy plants.
For a relaxing drink experience, you can relax either on its sofas or on regular tables and chairs. And if you want to drink outside, it has a covered patio and an open beer garden. The outdoor area has pastel color chairs and tables where you can sit and relax while watching live performances of local artists.
- Crowd Favorite: Foggy Bottom Boi. New England IPA with 6.5% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: We Be Vibin’
- Hop-py Note: Weekly events. Trivia nights. Family-friendly. Occasional live music.
Hours: Open Mon 3pm-10pm, Wed-Fri 3pm-10pm, Sat 12pm-10pm, Sun 12pm-8pm, Tue Closed