Duluth is not new to the craft brewing industry, as the city brewed its first beer over 150 years ago, and its first brewery was established in 1857. Since its breakout, Duluth’s craft beer scene has grown rapidly, with new breweries and brewpubs springing up.
Today, Duluth is home to at least seven active breweries and two well-known cideries, all with unique and out-of-the-box brews. Therefore, having a beer tour in this city will surely give you one of the best beer experiences!
1. Bent Paddle Brewing Company
Established in May 2013, Bent Paddle is a brewery in Duluth that was founded by two couples that share the same vision and philosophy about brewing. It is a big brewery with a 30-barrel production system, brewing large batches of beers. Moreover, its brews are made with Lake Superior’s water, one of the freshest water in the world, which makes the beers smooth and incredible.
Bent Paddle’s taproom features a fantastic selection of 18 innovative crafts, including its year-round, specialty, and pilot beers on tap. You can also get a variety of canned beers you can drink on-site or take home. Additionally, Bent Paddle offers nitro cold-press coffee and a rotating selection of kombucha for non-alcoholic customers.
- Crowd Favorite: Bent Hop 6.2% ABV. An American IPA with a balanced malt and hop profile.
- Highly Recommended: Cold Press Black
- Hop-py note: Offers gift cards. Street parking. Private event rentals.
- Fun Fact: Bent Paddle sells CBD and CBD+ beverages; these are sparkling waters with cannabidiol extract (a natural compound found on flowers of cannabis plants).
Hours: Open Sun – Thur 12pm – 10pm, Fri & Sat 12pm – 11pm.
Address: 1832 W Michigan St, Duluth, MN 55806
2. Ursa Minor Brewing
Thanks to its spacious taproom, tasty wood-fired pizzas, ample outdoor seating, and laid-back vibe, Ursa Minor Brewing is always bustling with locals and tourists alike, who come to mingle over happy hour and craft beers as the sun sets.
Ursa Minor Brewing is a microbrewery in West Duluth, close to Lincoln Park and Bent Paddle. It has a five barrel-system that it uses to craft small batches of premium beers. Moreover, a group of friends runs this brewery, and all share the same mission of bringing together the community through fun moments and excellent tasting craft beers.
- Crowd Favorite: Bear Hop. A clean, crisp, and refreshing American IPA with 6.8% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Constellation Cream
- Hop-py note: Dog-friendly patio. Live music. Board games. Kid-friendly. Curbside delivery.
- Fun Fact: Ursa partners with a local potter, Bob Husby, who handcrafts unique 25 ounces mugs for their Mug Club members with a $100 fee for a lifetime membership.
Hours: Open Sun – Thur 11am – 10pm, Fri & Sat 11am – 11pm.
3. Wild State Cider
Anyone who enjoys craft beers will find something to their liking at Wild State Cider, which specializes in clean, crisp, and satisfying ciders. Wild State’s brew of natural cider, which they craft without using any artificial ingredients, has helped them develop into one of the biggest cider producers in the state.
Today, Wild State is in the Lincoln Park neighborhood, actively serving its wide variety of premium cider. Wild State also serves small bites and has a family-friendly atmosphere, making its taproom popular among locals and tourists.
- Crowd Favorite: Raspberry Hibiscus. A sweet and bright cider with 6.1% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Pear
- Hop-py note: Yoga Mondays. Bingo nights. Occassional events. Trivia nights.
- Fun Fact: Wild State has a Cider Club that offers special benefits and brews one-of-a-kind ciders that are exclusively available only for club members.
Hours: Open Mon – Thur 2pm – 10pm, Fri & Sat 12pm – 11pm, Sun 12pm – 8pm.
Address: 2515 W Superior St, Duluth, MN 55806
4. Hoops Brewing
Hoops Brewing was established in 2017 by Dave Hoops, a skilled master brewer with years of experience in the brewing industry. It is a locally known brewery in Duluth’s historic Canal Park, and tourists always find their way to this worthy brewery.
Hoops Brewing features a spacious beer hall that can cater to up to 250 people and offers a variety of 30 premium handcrafted brews. The beer hall is family-friendly and has many board games you can enjoy with your companions. Moreover, although Hoops doesn’t have an in-house kitchen serving food, you can bring food from a restaurant and bring it to the beer hall.
- Crowd Favorite: No. 21 India Pale Ale. A heavy hopped and fruity American IPA with 7.5% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: No. 15 Pale Ale
- Hop-py note: Bike and street parking. Free Wi-Fi. Kid-friendly. Outdoor seating.
- Fun Fact: Hoops Brewing offers free brewery tours; you can reserve a spot or book a custom tour by calling their contact number.
Hours: Open Mon 11am – 11pm, Tues 3pm – 11pm, Wed – Sun 11am – 11pm.
Address: 325 S Lake Ave, Duluth, MN 55802
5. Blacklist Brewing Company
Enjoy a can of Blacklist’s award-winning brews when you need something to quench your thirst. All their beers are refreshing and crisp, enough to make you want more. Why? It’s because they use only the freshest Lake Superior water in crafting all of their beers. Another thing why Blacklist is a must-visit brewery is because of its large indoor area with a full bar. And you can also book a spacious private room for your event.
If that isn’t enough to entice you, Blacklist is the first brewery in Duluth to feature axe throwing within its premises. The staffs at Blacklist are available to be your mentors and coaches throughout the axing process. Though, make sure you are sober before you throw down.
- Crowd Favorite: Or de Belgique. A sophisticated and rich in aroma tropical Belgian ale with 7.5% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Spruce
- Hop-py note: Games. Music. Sells merchandise. Offers beer to-go.
- Fun Fact: Blacklist has a drone video featuring its taproom and production area you can view on their website.
Hours: Open Mon – Wed 4pm – 10pm, Thur 3pm – 10pm, Fri 3pm – 11pm, Sat 12pm – 11pm, Sun 12pm – 8pm.
Address: 206 E Superior St, Duluth, MN 55802
6. Duluth Cider
Another must-visit cidery for you is Duluth Cider, which is the first cidery in the city and one of Minnesota’s largest cider producers. It is owned by couple Jake and Valerie, who both started their cider journey together in Boston before opening their cidery in their hometown Duluth, Minnesota.
Today, Duluth Cider is everyone’s favorite and is a haven for locals and tourists who share the same love for ciders. Its taproom and production facility houses a renovated 100-year-old building. The taproom features over 15 ciders on tap and in-can for to-go orders. You can also get an entire pint of your favorite cider or take a flight to enjoy and taste a variety of unique brews.
- Crowd Favorite: Gitch. A bold and crisp semi-sweet cider with 6.2% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Trailside
- Hop-py note: Offers growlers and crowlers. Weekly events. Board games.
- Fun Fact: Duluth Cider has been named Minnesota’s Best Cidery in 2021 by Star Tribune.
Hours: Open Mon – Thur 12pm – 10pm, Fri & Sat 12pm – 11pm, Sun 11am – 8pm.
Address: 2307 W Superior St, Duluth, MN 55806
7. Canal Park Brewing
Canal Park Brewing is a locally owned family business in Duluth that you can find near Lake Superior. It has six award-winning beers that have won gold and silver awards from multiple national competitions. Aside from beers, the brewery also has an in-house barley wine that won an award at the 2019 Minnesota Brewers Cup.
Canal Park Brewing is best experienced when you relax on its outdoor patio. Sunsets over Lake Superior, seen from the patio without obstruction, are some of the most beautiful scenery you’ll ever see. So, make sure to drink at its patio and pair your beer with its hearty dishes to have a fantastic time at this brewery.
- Crowd Favorite: Stoned Surf IPA. A smooth and spicy medium-bodied IPA with 7% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Nut Hatchet Brown
- Hop-py note: Family-friendly. Dog-friendly patio. Vegetarian food options.
- Fun Fact: Canal Park Brewing has installed solar panels on its rooftop as they make its business as sustainable as possible.
Hours: Open Daily 11am – 11pm.
Address: 300 Canal Park Dr, Duluth, MN 55802
8. Fitger’s Brewhouse
Round up your pals and pay a visit to this Duluth treasure that you can find in the original Fitger’s building. Fitger’s Brewhouse was the pioneering craft brewpub in the city, and it is among the most prominent players that significantly impacted the growing beer scene in Duluth.
This Duluth favorite also boasts a fantastic environment and quality food menu aside from its handcraft premium brews. Moreover, pure Lake Superior water makes all Fitger’s beers, giving them a crisper finish. And finally, all of its food items, including its in-house smoked fish, use locally sourced and fresh ingredients.
- Crowd Favorite: Apricot Wheat. Crisp and light-bodied American apricot wheat ale with 5% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Big Boat Oatmeal Stout
- Hop-py note: Dog-friendly patio. Occasional events. Live music.
- Fun Fact: Fitger’s Brewhouse won the 2018 and 2019 Minnesota’s Best Brewpub by The Growler Magazine.
Hours: Open Sun – Thur 11am – 11pm, Fri & Sat 11am – 12am.
Address: 600 E Superior St, Duluth, MN 55802
9. Thirsty Pagan Brewing
Although Thirsty Pagan is not located in Duluth, it will be a waste not to mention this brewery as it is a local favorite in Superior, Wisconsin, just around 11 minutes away from Duluth. It is a microbrewery with a seven-barrel system producing a selection of beer styles all year round.
Thirsty Pagan features fine handcraft brews and rotating pizza specials. The brewery also hosts live music and awesome performances every night from local bands and artists. Moreover, Thirsty Pagan offers buffet-style catering of its pizzas for special events such as office meetings and private parties.
- Crowd Favorite: India Pagan Ale. A medium light-bodied West Coast style IPA with 6.8% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Burntwood Black Ale
- Hop-py note: Happy hour specials. Offers takeout. Indoor dining.
- Fun Fact: Thirsty Pagan Brewing is housed in a 114-year-old building that was once a passenger depot.
Hours: Open Daily 11am – 9pm.
Address: 1615 Winter St, Superior, WI 54880