Whether you’re a tourist visiting the beauty of Knoxville, a “Vol” from the famous University of Tennessee, or a simple local, Knoxville offers you a lot of enjoyment. Thanks to the Tennessee River, the city makes the perfect drinking spot. On that note, you don’t have to worry even a bit because Knoxville has numerous award-winning breweries serving classic American beers to German-style lagers.
To help you decide where to visit, we’ve gathered thirteen of the best breweries in Knoxville, Tennessee; you should never miss.
1. Hi-Wire Brewing
For producing approachable and balanced premium beers, Hi-Wire became an award-winning regional brewery with multiple locations around the United States, one of which is in Knoxville, Tennessee.
The Knoxville location sits on the second floor of a mixed-use building featuring a 10,000 sq. ft. taproom and two covered outside decks. One of its outside decks is on the rooftop, boasting jaw-dropping views of downtown Knoxville and the Tennessee river. Moreover, Hi-Wire’s Knoxville location is jam-packed with interactive games like a soccer pool, foosball, and shuffleboard. And if you ever get hungry while playing, you can pick up some food downstairs from Redbud Kitchen.
- Crowd Favorite: Bed of Nails. Toffee and dark fruit-flavored brown ale with 5.5% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Hi-Pitch Mosaic IPA
- Hop-py Note: Trivia nights. Non-alcoholic options. Curbside pick-up.
- Fun Fact: Hi-Wire currently has 13 award-winning beers, including the Japanese Dry Rice Lager, which won at the Great American Beer Festival 2021.
Hours: Open Mon-Wed 3pm-10pm, Thur & Fri 3pm-12am, Sat 12pm-12am, Sun 12pm-9pm
Address: 2020 Barber St, Knoxville, TN 37920
2. Schulz Brau Brewing Company
Drinking beer in Schulz Brau is like traveling to Europe, especially Germany. It opened its doors in 2016 and only brews using German-imported ingredients. Not only are its ingredients imported from Germany but also its tables, benches, and chairs. The German-theme beer hall and garden make the patrons feel like they have been transported to Germany while simply sipping Schulz Brau beers. Moreover, the brewery has fire pits in its beer garden for cold winter and a misting system for hot summer.
Schulz Brau currently serves 30 malty beers on tap, with bourbon wines and authentic German cuisine. To complete your trip-to-Germany experience here, the brewery has a monthly get-together to practice your German language skills.
- Crowd Favorite: Dunkel. Caramel and nutty lager with 5.4% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Pilsner
- Hop-py Note: Family and dog-friendly. Live music.
- Fun Fact: Schulz Brau is Knoxville’s first German beer garden.
Hours: Open Tue-Thur 3pm-12am, Fri & Sat 12pm-1am, Sun 12pm-12am, Mon Closed
Address: 126 Bernard Ave, Knoxville, TN 37917
3. Abridged Beer Company
The Abridged Beer concept is about spending time with people. The brewery set up a patio with ample space and picnic-like tables where groups of friends can enjoy their tasty beers and deliciously crafted burgers while the outdoor views add to a hip atmosphere.
Furthermore, Abridged Beer has The Oak room, which focuses on barrel-aged beers and has a stand-alone, full-service restaurant and taproom. Here, you can enjoy a variety of barrel-aged brews, cocktails, and a gourmet food menu. You can even get an entire charcuterie board with delicious meat and cheese that pairs well with its beverages.
- Crowd Favorite: Toppy Rock. A sweet and hoppy New England IPA with 7.1% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Synchronous
- Hop-py Note: Dog-friendly. Kid-friendly. Gift card. Vegan-burger options.
- Fun Fact: Abridged Beer’s location is a 1950s-era auto garage building providing a timeless industrial backdrop.
Hours: Open Tue 4pm-10pm, Wed & Thur 11am-3pm & 4pm-10m, Fri & Sat 12pm-10pm, Sun & Mon Closed
Address: 100 Lockett Rd, Knoxville, TN 37919
4. Pretentious Beer Co.
Whoever says that art is boring will be proven wrong by Pretentious as it knots art and beer together. It has a “Listening Space” event for customers to listen to local talents’ great music and poetry. It also presents live band karaoke in its taproom and a bring-your-own vinyl and cassette tape for a DJ to play.
Pretentious Beer’s taproom has a humble bar area featuring a large selection of 20 beers on tap. And you can enjoy a pint or a flight of these beers in its cozy indoor room or fantastic outdoor patio.
- Crowd Favorite: New Kids On the Floc. Double dry hopped New England IPA with 8% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Fairy Floss
- Hop-py Note: Dog-friendly. Trivia night. Family-friendly.
- Fun Fact: Pretentious hosts an event called “Show & Tell,” wherein customers will bring important stuff and tell a story behind it.
Hours: Open Mon-Thur 3pm-10pm, Fri 3pm-12am, Sat 12pm-12am, Sun 12pm-10pm
5. Balter Beerworks
If a unique drinking and dining experience is right up your alley, you might want to check out Balter Beerworks. It has transparent man-made igloos on its patio that can seat six people, where you can drink beer under the sun, rain, and even snow. It will surely be a great pair with Balter’s yummy food menu, as it has been a scratch kitchen brewpub since 2016.
Digging some more history, Balter’s establishment is a renovated old service station. Balter wishes to create a welcoming environment for craft beer and food lovers from this location. It also oaths to only use the freshest ingredients to make its menu and highlight seasonal delicacies.
- Crowd Favorite: Firebelly. A classic American IPA with 6.2% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Beer Blend
- Hop-py Note: Dog-friendly. Gift cards. Offers takeout and delivery.
- Fun Fact: The word Balter means to dance without skill but with enjoyment.
Hours: Open Mon-Thur 11am-11pm, Fri 11am-12am, Sat 10am-12am, Sun 10am-10pm
Address: 100 Broadway SW, Knoxville, TN 37902
6. Smoky Mountain Brewery
With four locations around Tennessee, Smoky Mountain has made a name in the local brewery industry. It serves Gatlinburg, Maryville, Pigeon Forge, and Knoxville. Its Knoxville location is located in Turkey Creek, hence the nickname for the branch, and it is famous for its 25 TVs in the taproom.
If you’re planning to go here, it is easy to spot the establishment through its twin working grain silos. The Regal Cinema’s Pinnacle 18 is also just across the brewery, and beside it is Calhoun’s restaurant. Furthermore, Smoky Mountain will never disappoint you with its over ten distinct beer styles available on tap and a delicious American food menu that pairs well with any of its beers.
- Crowd Favorite: Cherokee Red Ale. Light and mildly fruit-flavored amber ale with 5% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Appalachian Pale Ale
- Hop-py Note: Family-friendly. Live music. Bingo night.
- Fun Fact: Smoky Mountain is one of the largest microbreweries in East Tennessee.
Hours: Open Mon-Thur 11am-12am, Fri & Sat 11am-1am, Sun 11am-12am
7. Printshop Beer Co.
Whether you’re up for some relaxation or not, you will surely fall in love with the relaxing river views in Printshop. It stands astonishing on Island Home Avenue, beside the Tennessee River. With the great scenery, it is impossible not to enjoy the brewery’s IPA, ale, and sour beer-dominated menu. Non-alcoholic options like kombucha, cider, and seltzer are also available.
If you like to discover more about the brewery, Printshop Beer has tours every second Saturday of each month. It would also be a great opportunity to learn more about the brewing process, beer style and flavors, and other beer-related topics. The brewery tour will end with a tasting of 4 flights.
- Crowd Favorite: Hop Pusher. A tropical fruit-flavored and scented IPA with 6.3% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Hand Crank
- Hop-py Note: Family and dog-friendly. Yoga session every Saturday.
- Fun Fact: Printshop is a Craft Malt Certified brewery.
Hours: Open Tue-Thur 4pm-9pm, Fri & Sat 12pm-10pm, Sun 12pm-8pm, Mon Closed
8. Alliance Brewing Company
Besides brewing delicious beers, Alliance is passionate about giving back to the community. It constantly participates in stream cleanups and trail building. Moreover, to live up to its passion for being a brewery for the community, it unites locals by organizing fun runs, group runs, golfs, and yogas. Alliance Brewing also gives $1 off pints to anyone who rides their bike on the way to the brewery.
Alliance is a soccer fan, and to cater to like-minded customers, it flashes games of different teams on the 5 TVs around the taproom. And after all the tiring activities, Alliance offers uniquely styled beers to quench your thirst and a pop-up dinner provided by a local food vendor.
- Crowd Favorite: Cubano Coffee Brown. A smooth American brown ale with 6.7% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: CSM IPA
- Hop-py Note: Dog-friendly. Movie night. Sells merchandise. To-go beers are available.
Hours: Open Mon 3pm-10pm, Tue-Thur 3pm-11pm, Fri & Sat 12pm-12am, Sun 12pm-10pm
Address: 1130 Sevier Ave, Knoxville, TN 37920
9. Orange Hat Brewing
Established in 2020, Orange Hat is passionate about creating an exceptional space for the locals to enjoy freshly brewed craft beers. With this, a 2,000 sq. ft. taproom came to life with the effort of owners Rodney and Brian. The spacious taproom boasts three large-screen TVs and lawn games on its patio. For large groups, the brewery has hi-top tables open for reservations, which can seat 8 to 14 people.
Orange Hat Brewing actively serves over 15 beers on tap and offers gluten-free and non-alcoholic options. The brewery also hosts a variety of local food trucks every week, so you don’t need to worry about being hungry during your stay here.
- Crowd Favorite: Stone the Crows. Citrus-flavored hazy double IPA with 7.6% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Ladybug
- Hop-py Note: Private lot parking. Family and dog-friendly. Trivia nights.
- Fun Fact: Orange Hat is the first microbrewery in Hardin Valley Road, Knoxville.
Hours: Open Daily 11am-11pm
10. Hexagon Brewing Company
Hexagon Brewing began craft beer production on February 18, 2017, but history has long started since its two founders, Stephen Apking and Matt McMillan, discovered the essence of crafting local brews in different paths. Together, they crafted exciting beers in Knoxville while keeping an economically and environmentally conscious brewery.
The brewery’s taproom has an amazing space with a polished bar and tables, indoor games for guests who’d like to enjoy their drafts while playing, and an adequate selection of food menus for everyone. Moreover, you have the freedom to choose any beer from its 24 taps for a full pint or flight of six.
- Crowd Favorite: Sexy Cat. A dry-hopped American Pale Ale with 6% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Chocolate Jesus
- Hop-py Note: Dog-friendly. Kid-friendly. Private event hosting. Indoor games. Live Music.
- Fun Fact: Hexagon Brewing supports its community’s local and regional artists by featuring their works every month.
Hours: Open Mon-Thur 4pm-10pm, Fri 2pm-11pm, Sat 12pm-11pm, Sun 2pm-8pm
11. Elst Brewing Company
Launched by four Knoxville Neighbors who had the same idea of what great beer is, Elst Brewing is the spot for high-quality, consistent, and delicious drafts. Located in the downtown Knoxville Brewery corridor, Elst showcases its flagship beers and an exclusive selection of new beers released every Thursday.
Like how they made beers, guests complimented the place for being neat, complete, and tasteful. Not to mention the outdoor space that is perfect for enjoying the Knoxville weather along with your hop buddies.
- Crowd Favorite: Vanilla Milkshake Ale. A thick and creamy wheat beer with 4.7%b ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Elstennial IPA
- Hop-py Note: Dog-friendly. Kid-friendly. Food Truck. Growlers-to-go. Gift card.
- Fun Fact: Elst brewing got its name from “elst,” an old middle English word that originated from the sanctuary part of a monastery.
Hours: Open Mon-Thur 3pm-9pm, Fri & Sat 12pm-10pm, Sun 12pm-8pm
12. Blackhorse Brewery
Originally started brewing in 1991 in Clarksville, Blackhorse now has three locations around Tennessee. It is owned by married couple Jeff and Sherri, and the Knoxville location is especially sentimental to them as it is where they met.
Blackhorse’s Knoxville location is open daily, serving different mainstay beers, wine, cocktails, and spirits. Beer flights of four 5 oz. is also up for sampling. Moreover, get your palate ready, as Blackhorse has a full dining menu, and your little one won’t be out of place here as the taproom offers a tasty kid’s menu.
- Crowd Favorite: Vanilla Cream Ale. A sweet and light beer with 4.8% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Blackhorse IPA
- Hop-py Note: Sells merchandise and gift cards. Indoor and outdoor seating.
- Fun Fact: Blackhorse is derived from the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment, a unit in the US Army known as Blackhorse Regiment.
Hours: Open Mon-Thur 11am-10pm, Fri 11am-11pm, Sat 10:30am-11pm, Sun 10:30am-10pm
Address: 430 S Gay St, Knoxville, TN 37902
13. Albright Grove Brewing Company
Albright Grove was established by a craft beer expert, Nick Barron. And beer enthusiasts would agree that their great selection of brews is from their long experience and broad knowledge of craft brewing, from hazy IPAs to lagers and seasonal releases.
The brewery’s patio is charming, where live music and special events complete the friendly atmosphere. Promoting the community, they welcome the best food suppliers in the city, participate in environmental initiatives and support a neighborhood school and animal rescue.
- Crowd Favorite: Little River IPA. A crisp west coast style IPA with 5.8% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Newfound Gap DDH IPA
- Hop-py Note: Dog-friendly. Vegan food options. Live music. Private lot parking.
- Fun Fact: Albright Grove named some of their signature beers to pay homage to nature conservation.
Hours: Open Mon-Wed 4pm-9pm, Thur & Fri 4pm-10pm, Sat 12pm-10pm, Sun 2pm-8pm