There is A LOT to do in Charlotte that isn’t drinking beer.
There’s also to do in Charlotte that does involve drinking beer.
Check out my guide to the best breweries in Charlotte, including the classics and new games in town, so that you know where to sip when the moment hits!
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links below may be affiliate links, including links through the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. At no additional cost to you, I earn a commission if you make a purchase. I won’t recommend something I have not used/would not use myself, and any income earned supports the upkeep of this site.
Breweries in Charlotte: A Few Tips Before You Go
Before planning your brew crawl, check out these tips to make your trip easy and breezy.
How many breweries are in Charlotte, NC? There are over 30 breweries in Charlotte alone, and nearly 50 in the surrounding towns often considered the greater Charlotte area if you’re thinking about those Charlotte day trips.
That means we have a lot of ground to cover here!
What is the best area to stay in Charlotte, NC? If you’re wanting to be in close proximity to some of the best Charlotte beer, consider finding accommodations in Uptown, NoDa — this part of town stands for North Davidson, the main thoroughfare here — or the South End.
Historic Dilworth is fantastic if you’re looking for more than the brewery scene, as the neighborhood boasts some very adorable charm and rising real estate home prices if you’re looking.
Plaza Midwood will offer you a little bit of everything, as it’s actually a blend of two former neighborhoods that are less alike than they’d like you to think.
Tell me about Charlotte hotels.
I’m usually using Booking.com for the best deals on hotel-style accommodations domestically. I’d suggest cross-checking with Hotels.com before you book your hotels, just in case you’re able to get a cheaper stay on that site.
We stayed at the Kimpton Tryon Park Hotel while visiting Charlotte, and I’d highly recommend the property, courtesy of my own experience. It’s included in the list below:
- AC Hotel by Marriott Charlotte City Center
- Embassy Suites Charlotte
- Hampton Inn Charlotte Uptown
- Kimpton Tryon Park Hotel
- The Westin Charlotte
If you’re seeking more space, a kitchen area, etc., Vrbo has become our go-to Airbnb alternative, as they don’t take advantage of their affiliates.
Check out my top Vrbo picks in Charlotte below:
- Modern Luxury Near Uptown
- Sanctuary in Dilworth
- Swanky Townhouse in Uptown
- Uptown Oasis in Charlotte
- Your Charlotte Cat’s Meow + Airport Pickup
Seeking cabin stays in North Carolina? I’ve got a guide for that!
25 Best Breweries in Charlotte
Now, on to our main event. Charlotte’s breweries are as delicious as they are diverse.
What beer is Charlotte known for? Charlotte is known for IPAs and sour, funkier ales when it comes to its beer scene.
I’m sure you’ll find at least one to six to your liking on my list of 25 of the best Charlotte breweries.
Note: While I’m all about having you try as many of these as you’re able, this is your neighborly reminder that it’s never cool to drink and drive after sampling the best beer in Charlotte. Tipsy driving is drunk driving, people. Order a rideshare to get from one place to another. They’re plentiful in Charlotte.
Check on times before you head out so you’re not disappointed when you get there. Social media (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) for many of these breweries is a great way to check on the most up-to-date times and special events!
If the idea of navigating all of these Charlotte area breweries sounds very much a confusing endeavor, I put ’em all on a Google map for you as a special gift.
Check out that map below.
GET THAT BREWERIES MAP!
Armored Cow Brewing Co.
Armored Cow in University City is fun for not only the beer they pour, but all of the additional extras they serve up if you’re traveling with someone that’s just not that into beer.
They serve kombucha, cider, even wine at this one, on top of the gluten-free beer options for those needing to limit the gluten in their diets.
Birdsong Brewing Co.
Started by a husband-and-wife team and a brewer friend back in 2011, Birdsong in Charlotte’s Belmont neighborhood has expanded substantially since.
Today, this lively spot is known for their jalapeño pale ale and a variety of seasonal offerings. If it’s on the menu when you visit, don’t miss out on whatever white ale they’re serving up at the time. It’s delicious.
Blue Blaze Brewing
Blue Blaze Brewing is known for American, English and German-style beers. Think golden ales and milk stouts, wheat beers and crisp pale ales.
If you’re well-versed in all things Appalachian Trail, you’ll understand the West End brewery’s inspiration.
On the trail, blue blazes, or paint marks, are used as signals that you’re going the right way, and any additional points of interest. The brewery’s going for those communal vibes with their name and can designs.
Note: You can see the Appalachian Trail for yourself if you’d like, with several access points within a couple hours of driving from Charlotte. The Roan Highlands are perhaps one of the most famous spots on the trail in North Carolina, about a three-hour drive from the city.
Brewers at 4001 Yancey
The Brewers at 4001 Yancey is more of a concept than a brewery, a collaboration between multiple breweries in an enormous LoSo taproom with delicious foods.
The brews available come from the efforts of Southern Tier Brewing Company, Sixpoint Brewing Company, Victory Brewing Company, and the Bold Rock Cidery, a monster-size mashup of deliciously indulgent craft beer.
Catawba Brewing Company
Catawba Brewing is a well-known name in beer, as it’s had a presence in Asheville’s Belmont neighborhood for years. It’s only been a (very welcome) addition to Charlotte’s brewery scene since 2017.
Their White Zombie white ale is probably their claim to fame. If you arrive and they have Peanut Butter Jelly Time available, though, you won’t regret a pour of the brown ale.
D9 Brewing Co.
Lake Norman staple D9 Brewing Co. has expanded with new locations in the Uptown neighborhood of Charlotte and Hendersonville. The Uptown site will be operating out of the Savoy apartments, with an outdoor concert space available for evenings of live music.
Try their Brown Sugar Brown Cow, a mocha brown ale, or their Wormhole, a sour ale that sounds right up my alley. Coffee and lime? I’ll go down that wormhole for sure.
Devil’s Logic Brewing
Devil’s Logic is a great place to toss a few back in Midtown, with two patios that offer up both excellent people-watching and views of the city.
Try any of their Belgian saisons if they’re pouring them. They usually have fun with herbal notes on those.
If you need an added boost, they serve up delicious cold brew coffee, as well.
Divine Barrel Brewing
Divine Barrel Brewing, one of the most popular NoDa breweries, prides itself on fun takes on the classics.
I’m talking about pours like their Ice Cream Paint Job, a sour Berliner-style Weisse with flavors of tangerine and chocolate, and their Lead-Filled Snowshoe, an American IPA.
Free Range Brewing
Free Range Brewing is small-batch beer done well in Villa Heights. Taste their Cream of the Crop to kick things off, a Carolina cream ale that’s a tasty pour no matter the season.
The brewery is a great place for live music and beer-focused events they hold throughout the season, too.
Heist Brewery is one of the city’s original breweries, with multiple locations in NoDa and Camp North End.
Fun fact: Charlotte’s brewery scene is a young one. Heist came onto the scene in 2012, just three years after the Olde Mecklenburg Brewery opened as the city’s first.
If you like dark beers, don’t miss their Global Happiness, a coffee brown ale. They also boast a full menu of elevated pub snacks and a Sunday brunch to soak up all of those hops.
The Legion Brewing company has three locations so far with more planned in the works, but their expansion efforts haven’t affected the quality of this one.
Try the Juicy Jay at Legion if you want a taste of what they’re known for.
All of their locations boast delicious food menus, as well. Come on Sunday for brunch and a breakfast biscuit sandwich alongside your brews to really get things going.
Lenny Boy Brewing Co.
Lenny Boy Brewing Co. is known for their unique flavors, with a whole menu of sours and wild ales to excite someone like me who likes to get funky with their ales.
Try any of the kettle sour ales on the menu at this South End brewery if you’re similarly funky.
NoDa Brewing Company
NoDa Brewing Company has several locations, but the brewery’s main production facility and impressive beer garden is at their North End location. Try a variety of delicious brews to suit any palate, from sours to pale ales to porters in a spacious setting.
While it’s currently closed, their original North Davidson location, referred to as The OG, is where you’ll need to return to for a selection of their best sours.
The Olde Mecklenburg Brewery
The Olde Mecklenburg Brewery is Charlotte’s oldest, meaning it’s an essential stop on any list of the best breweries in Charlotte.
Come for the Hornet’s Nest, their hefeweizen that’s picked up a few beer awards, and stay for the 8-acre beer garden. Oh, and also the beer cheese.
Do stay for the beer cheese.
Fun fact: I refuse to knock any available cheeses, but if you want a nibble of what Charlotte is known for, it’s pimento cheese. Try to find some to to spread while you’re out and about with all of those tasters.
You may find that locals call this one OMB Charlotte rather than the full name, as it is quite the mouthful. Either way, get ye to LoSo.
Petty Thieves Brewing Co.
Petty Thieves Brewing Co. is one of the newer breweries on the Charlotte craft beer scene, and they’re all about imaginative takes on the classics in Lockwood.
If you’re into breweries playing with wine flavors in their beer, try a pint of their All the Wine, a hazy double IPA that packs a punch.
You may not know what you’re going to get on a visit to Pilot Brewing, as their specialty is small batch, experimental offerings in Plaza Midwood.
You’ll usually see an IPA or two on their draft list, along with more funky, sour batches for the adventurous among you. Their Harvest Saison is an award winner.
Protagonist has two locations now, one in NoDa and another in South End.
Their NoDa location is considered a nano-brewery, with small-batch tastes on tap alongside offerings from their own favorite local breweries.
An added bonus at the South End location is the fact that they have an excellent pizza program going.
Pizza’s always welcome when there’s beer involved.
Resident Culture Brewing Company
Resident Culture Brewing Company is one of the top breweries in Charlotte for not only its delicious beer — they have an excellent barrel-aged program if that’s what you’re after — but its emphasis on community in Plaza Midwood.
There is a true sense of place at this one, as they host frequent cultural and community events throughout the year to continue building on those neighborly vibes.
So make yourself at home here, already.
Salud Cerveceria is the in-house brewery of the Salud Beer Shop in NoDa, a bottle shop offering up the best in local and regional craft beers.
While at the brewery, try any of their sours — lemon and toasted marshmallow flavors have appeared on their list — or crisp lagers. If you’re hungry, their wood-fired pizza is top notch.
The Suffolk Punch
The Suffolk Punch is a coffee bar by morning and a brewery and eatery whenever it’s polite to quit with the coffee already.
The South End space is also fantastic, with a large patio and gleaming indoor space that leads to a curated experience from start to finish.
If you’re there to eat, their weekend brunch is fantastic.
Sugar Creek Brewing Company
The focus at Sugar Creek Brewing Company is on Belgian-style beers, with award-winning varieties that feature both locally-sourced and specialty ingredients imported from Belgium.
If you need a real kick in the pants, try anything on their reserve list. A Belgian Dubbel should do the trick on your LoSo visit.
Sycamore Brewing Charlotte is one of the most popular breweries in Charlotte. While the beer sure does deliver on flavor, it’s their enormous beer garden that keeps a steady crowd coming day after day.
Bring your pooch to this one in South End if you’d like, as this place is very dog-friendly…and completely human-friendly, too.
The staff is fantastic.
Town Brewing Co.
Town Brewing Co. is a younger brewery in Wesley Heights on the Charlotte scene with warehouse vibes and community spirit. You’ll find a little bit of everything here, but any of their English styles are delicious.
If you’re hungry, they have a great menu of munchies that include a crab rangoon dip that is never a bad idea.
Triple C Brewing Company
Triple C Brewing Company is inspired by craft, community, and commitment, the three c’s that make up their name.
If you want a sip of what this one is known for, though, order the Baby Maker while in South End.
It’s a double IPA that I’m sure Brian would find very easy to drink, and me, not so much. I’m going after any of their lighter options, like their Liberry, a lime and kiwi delight.
Wooden Robot Brewery
Wooden Robot Brewery is a well-known Charlotte brewery with a loyal following that recently expanded to add a second location in NoDa.
Their original location is in South End, and both are awesome.
Good Morning Vietnam, their coffee vanilla blonde ale, is made with locally sourced Ethiopian Coffee. It’s a revelation.
Did I miss any of your favorite breweries in Charlotte? Share them with me in the comments!
Photo credits: Wes Hicks (1)
Ready for Charlotte?
Your Flight: I use a variety of tools to find cheap airfare, but if you’re looking to book trips to taste the best beer during a particular period of time, especially during busy times (e.g. school breaks), you should use Skyscanner.
It’s a great tool for when you’re more flexible, too, as it allows you to compare travel based on length of travel, departure date, etc.
Your Accommodations: Scroll on up for more on Charlotte hotels and where to stay while you’re there. I recommend both Booking.com and Hotels.com as your main options, and Vrbo as your Airbnb alternative.
Seeking even more wallet-friendly accommodations? Try Hostelworld. Their picks are heavily vetted and reviewed to offer you a safe experience on a budget.
If you’re seeking North Carolina cabin stays in particular, I’ve got a guide for that!
Etc.: For general travel goodies, visit my Favorite Things page. For more information on planning your travel, visit my Travel Tools page.
Are you ready to experience Charlotte and its beer scene? Pin this for later!
Looking for more North Carolina content?
- A Road Trip Guide to the American South
- Spend a Weekend in Asheville
- A Guide to the North Carolina Triangle
- 25 Beautiful Blue Ridge Parkway Overlooks
- 25 Fabulous Day Trips From Charlotte
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