Milwaukee was named the brewing capital of the world in the late 1800s. It is due to the rich amount of freshwater ice and greeneries that instantly made the city an ideal place to brew. It is only possible to repeat history as Milwaukee today has the essential resources, too: numerous award-winning breweries and one-of-a-kind beer styles.
If you are interested in getting ahead of the world and being one of the first to discover Milwaukee’s distinct drinks, here is a list of the 11 outstanding breweries in Milwaukee.
1. Lakefront Brewery
Lakefront started crafting beers in 1987, and it is considered one of the leading breweries in the US today. Because of its hard work, a large selection of award-winning beers can be tasted on its tap, including margarita-style ale, bavarian dark lager, and other organic and gluten-free brews. Pair them up with equally award-winning bar bites such as fish fry and cheese curds, and your Lakefront experience will be a day to remember.
Never miss out on Lakefront’s famous brewery tours led by its entertaining guides. The daily tour lasts only for 45 minutes, and a free souvenir pint glass and two 16 oz pour.
- Crowd Favorite: IPA. A smooth and crisp American-style beer with 6.7% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Riverwest Stein
- Hop-py Note: Sells merchandise and gift cards. Trivia and bingo nights. Free parking. Live music.
- Fun Fact: Lakefront is a Certified B Corporation.
Hours: Open Mon-Thur 4pm-9pm, Fri & Sat 11am-9pm, Sun 11am-5pm
2. City Lights Brewing Co.
Walking into City Light’s taproom is like exploring the wonders of ancient times. Although it originally started operating in 2017, its buildings are quite historical, which gives off a classic and magical vibe. The brewery’s picturesque architecture and idyllic setting make it a perfect place to snap some good and Instagram-worthy photos.
Relish City Lights’ award-winning core, specialty, and seasonal beers in pints and 12 oz. cans. Hard seltzers and non-alcoholic sparkling teas are also available.
- Crowd Favorite: Coconut Porter. A smooth mouthfeel beer with hints of coffee, chocolate, and vanilla containing 5.3% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Hazy IPA
- Hop-py Note: Wheelchair accessible. Offers free shuttle. Outdoor seating is available.
- Fun Fact: City Light’s Hazy IPA won a silver medal at the 2019 GABF and a platinum medal at the World Beer Championships.
Hours: Open Tue-Thur 3pm-10pm, Fri & Sat 11am-10pm, Sun 11am-8pm, Mon Closed
3. Central Waters Brewing Co.
Another brewery with a sustainability-conscious nature, Central Waters is committing to be one of the most environmentally sustainable breweries. It has four large solar arrays to provide hot water to its 12,500 square feet facility. With numerous efforts, the state gave it exclusive programs such as Green Tier and Green Masters.
Central Water’s original location is in Amherst, but it also has an equally lovable location in Milwaukee. It has 18 beers exclusive to the location, three flagship beers, and two seasonals. The brewery welcomes outside food, and good thing because it is located between two restaurants.
- Crowd Favorite: Brewer’s Reserve Bourbon Barrel Stout. An Imperial stout with a hint of vanilla containing 10.5% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Mudpuppy Porter
- Hop-py Note: Curbside pickup. Sells merchandise. Kid-friendly.
Hours: Open Mon-Thur 3pm-10pm, Fri & Sat 11am-12am, Sun 11am-9pm
4. Sprecher Brewing Co.
Operating as the oldest craft brewery in Milwaukee, Sprecher Brewing surely has a lot of expertise to offer in its pints of beer. To this date, it is the only brewery in the USA to use fire brewing and match it up with bold flavors. Other craft beverages like fire-brewed sodas are also available in the brewery, along with delicious locally-sourced snacks.
One of the hidden gems in Milwaukee is Sprecher Brewing’s old Bavarian-themed taproom and indoor beer garden. Here, you can play pinball and darts and sign up for Sprecher Brewing’s brewery tour.
- Crowd Favorite: Hard Root Beer. Smooth, tasty, and sweet root beer with 5% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Black Bavarian
- Hop-py Note: Live music. Offers guided tours. Gift shop. Wheelchair accessible. Family-friendly.
- Fun Fact: The New York Times rated Sprecher Brewing’s Hard Root Beer as the best in America.
Hours: Open Mon-Thur 11am-7pm, Fri & Sat 11am-9pm, Sun 11am-4pm
5. Third Space Brewing
If you dream about setting up your brewery someday, join Third Space’s beer class. Brewmaster Kevin Wight leads the session, where he will discuss beer flavor, complexity, and anything about barrel-aged beers. The class takes up to 30 minutes and only happens once a month, and hurry because it is also limited to 30 spots per class.
Since brewing in 2016, Third Space has now had a lot of beers to choose from, with 22 available on tap. It takes pride in its dog-friendly beer garden adjacent to the industrial and rustic taproom, where outside foods and carry-ins are welcome.
- Crowd Favorite: Happy Place. An American pale ale with flavors of citrus, stone fruit, berries, and passion fruit containing 5.3% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Upward Spiral
- Hop-py Note: Curbside pickup. Free parking. Live music. Food trucks are available. Yoga classes. Sells merchandise and gift cards. Trivia nights.
Hours: Open Mon-Thur 4pm-9pm, Fri 2pm-10pm, Sat 12pm-10pm, Sun 12pm-7pm
6. Eagle Park Brewing Company
Eagle Park was founded by brothers Max and Jack Borgardt, who love writing music and playing in a band. Another passion they carry is to drink beer together, so they decided to ditch their Grammy Award dream and started brewing in their garage.
With the two brother’s efforts, Eagle Park now has two branches around Wisconsin, including one in Milwaukee. You can chug a large selection of 35 malty, hoppy, and dark beers on its tap in Milwaukee, along with hard seltzers, sours, and slushies. Classic and delectable pub fares are also available for some beer accompaniment.
- Crowd Favorite: Set List. A hop-forward New England IPA with 6.5% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Demon Haze
- Hop-py Note: Curbside pickup. Kid-friendly. Dog-friendly patio. Sells merchandise.
- Fun Fact: Out of 3,307 brewpubs around the USA, Brewers Association ranked Eagle Park as the 8th largest in beer production.
Hours: Open Mon-Fri 3pm-10pm, Sat 11am-10pm, Sun 11am-9pm
7. MobCraft Beer
Delight MobCraft’s great beers in its spacious taproom boasting a view of its brewhouse and wild & sour room. Pair up your perfect beer with MobCraft’s most sought-after variety of craft pizzas, like chicken barbeque and pickle pizzas. And to keep you entertained, foosball, shuffleboard, and other bar games are always available.
MobCraft has a unique way as well as discovering unique and emerging beers. It has a program called Crowdsourced Beer, wherein patrons can submit a beer recipe on the website and gather people to pre-vote the recipe, and the winners will be the ones to be brewed by MobCraft. Some crowdsourced beers are available in MobCraft’s four taprooms, including in Milwaukee.
- Crowd Favorite: Bat$h!t Crazy. A well-balanced Coffee Brown Ale with 5.6% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Vanilla Wafer Porter
- Hop-py Note: Curbside pickup. Open for private event rentals. Dog-friendly patio.
- Fun Fact: MobCraft’s Low pHunk Sour Ale won gold at the 2022 World Beer Cup.
Hours: Open Mon-Thur 3pm-10pm, Fri & Sat 12pm-11pm, Sun 12pm-10pm
Address: 505 S 5th St, Milwaukee, WI 53204
8. Good City Brewing
If you’re searching for an amenity-packed brewery, you should check out Good City. It has an industrial-chic taproom with plenty of seating, a rooftop deck, and two unique event spaces with a private bar, all available for private rentals.
Good City also has a full kitchen serving the best-stuffed pretzels, curry fries, hummus, and Wisco’s favorite mac and cheese. Along with thirst-quenching craft beers, ciders, hard seltzers, sangrias, and wines are also available. But if you don’t feel like chugging alcohol, Good City also has coffees and espressos.
- Crowd Favorite: Motto. A juicy tropical fruit-flavored American pale ale with 5.2% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Reward
- Hop-py Note: Curbside pickup. Delivery and carryout. Free parking. Dog-friendly patio. Family-friendly.
- Fun Fact: Good City has a program in Milwaukee called 1% For Our Home, which donates to non-profit home builders.
Hours: Open Mon-Sat 11am-10pm, Sun 11am-9pm
9. Hacienda Beer Co.
Whether you’re looking for a relaxing place to spend your time with or a delicious set of beers to drink, Hacienda Beer got your back. It has a well-decorated taproom that patrons can’t stop praising. With its designs that fall between the modern and 1990s, the place instantly gives off a cool and mesmerizing atmosphere.
Another point to love about Hacienda Beer is its modern and experimental beers varying from crisp pilsner to juicy IPA. Freshly cooked spare ribs, french toast with pork belly, and people’s favorite stuffed avocado are also available in its in-house kitchen.
- Crowd Favorite: Everything Eventually. A refreshing pale ale with 5.9% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: It Just Does Weird Things
- Hop-py Note: Sells gift cards. Jukebox bingo nights. Dog-friendly patio.
- Fun Fact: Hacienda Beer offers an exclusive membership club for $100 a year, limited to 100 people per taproom.
Hours: Open Mon-Fri 3pm-10pm, Sat 11am-10pm, Sun 11am-9pm
10. Company Brewing
If you’re craving sweaty ice-cold lagers, gose, porter, and ales, you should try visiting Company Brewing. There are also non-alcoholic beers and cocktails on the beer menu, so there’s an option for everyone. Have them in 8 oz or full pour pint in-house. And for takeout, a wide variety of beer packs, crowlers, and growlers are available.
Another worth visiting in Company Brewing besides its top-notch drinks are its set of above-average foods. Catch its daily dining hours from 12 PM to 10 PM, and get your tummy filled with mouthwatering options of burgers, fish fry, and sausages. If you don’t have the time for indoor and patio dining, Company Brewing got you covered by online ordering and quick pick-up.
- Crowd Favorite: Space Whistle. A juicy American IPA with 6.8% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Alphabetical Order
- Hop-py Note: Live music. Kid and dog-friendly. Trivia nights. Sells gift cards.
Hours: Open Mon-Thur 12pm-10pm, Fri 12pm-2am, Sat 11am-2am, Sun 11am-10pm
Address: 735 E Center St, Milwaukee, WI 53212
11. Broken Bat Brewing Co.
Heads up, sports lover, as you would surely fall in love with Broken Bat’s baseball-themed brewery. Here, a lot of seating will be waiting for you, along with multiple televisions, which makes it a suitable location for a baseball match viewing.
Make your favorite team’s thrilling game more exciting with Broken Bat’s 16 beers on tap, all named after baseball as well. And finally, the Broken Bat’s pride has a Wiffleball field that can cater to 10-12 players. It is also available for rent-outs, all equipment provided, but no food is allowed.
- Crowd Favorite: Ugly Finder. Balanced and juicy New England IPA with 6% ABV.
- Highly Recommended: Beach Ball
- Hop-py Note: Sells merchandise. Wheelchair accessible. Occasional yoga class. Online beer ordering. Trivia nights.
- Fun Fact: Broken Bat has a mug club available only to 399 people. For a one-time payment of $125, you can get a wooden baseball bat mug and $6 for all 12 oz pours.
Hours: Open Mon-Thur 3pm-10pm, Fri & Sat 12pm-10pm, Sun 12pm-6pm