Craft Breweries in Baltimore
Craft breweries are booming in Baltimore. Raise a glass to some of the can't-miss spots for a creative local pint.
Baltimore’s love affair with the humble beer gives us a lot to be proud of. This is the birthplace of the beer cap (patented in 1829), the place where beer was first canned (by the American Can Co. in Canton) and, of course, where our beloved Natty Boh got its start, watching us from atop Brewers Hill.
While many of Baltimore’s historic breweries lost their fizz long ago, a new generation of brewers are putting us back on the map. Ready to crack a cold one? Find out where you can taste some of the most exciting modern craft brews in town and take a brewery tour.
Checkerspot Brewing Co.
Owned by Judy Neff—a former microbiologist who helped found Baltimore Beer Babes, a craft beer enthusiast group for women—this small-batch brewery in South Baltimore focuses on creating brews in partnership with area farms for super-fresh regional flavors. Checkerspot’s tap room overlooks the brew house, where they make combinations like a kettle sour brewed with all-local ingredients, or a Maryland style Rye Amber made from Chesapeake malting barley. Fittingly, the name comes from the Maryland state butterfly, a nod to the brewer’s appreciation for the outdoors.
Diamondback Brewing Co.
This 6,800-square-foot brewery and 50-seat taproom in Locust Point brews small-batch beer with a focus on ales, lagers and one-off styles. Among its peers, Diamondback proclaims a “slow beer” approach, allowing its crisp lagers to age for more than two months
Fittingly situated in Brewers Hill—the neighborhood where beloved local beer National Bohemian once operated— Mobtown focuses on producing innovative beers that embrace local culture and integrate regional ingredients. Head to the tasting room to sample a mixture of classic milk stouts and hoppy IPAs alongside interesting concoctions like the hard seltzer made from cherry juice and Hibiscus flowers.
Monument City Brewing Co.
Housed inside a former warehouse in Highlandtown, Monument City’s 20-barrel brewery offers eight brews on tap, including its signature 51 Rye IPA, a German-Czech pilsner and a malty American Brown Ale, alongside seasonal specialties. Cozy up to the bar to check out the handcrafted wooden tap handles, made from old mash tanks sourced from a historic local distillery.
Peabody Heights Brewery
Situated in Waverly on the site of the former Oriole Park from the early 1900s, Peabody Heights Brewery is a co-op that allows fledgling brewers to hone their beers under the guidance of a master brewer. They now brew more than 2,000 barrels a month of their signature, seasonal and limited-edition brews. On the weekends, the casual family-friendly tasting room is a place to let your kids run around while you unwind with a takeout pizza and a cold one.
Union Craft Brewing
Set along the Jones Fall river in Medfield, Union Craft Brewing combines old traditions with new ideas to create its modern riffs on beer. Founded in 2012, the 20-barrel brewhouse moved to a new, larger space as the anchor to Union Collective in 2018, where they host tastings and events alongside food and beverage vendors like Well Crafted Kitchen, The Charmery and Vent Coffee Roasters. Head to the tap room to try some of the brewery’s latest creations, which include collaborations with Baltimore-based brands, locally influenced flavors and beer-adjacent offerings like cider. One recent addition: a hoppy, fruity IPA in honor of former Ravens free safety Ed Reed.
Wet City Brewing
With a name that references Maryland’s refusal to support federal alcohol restrictions during Prohibition, it’s no surprise that this Mount Vernon brewery offers a colorful selection of beers and sours (literally – Wet City has a purple beer on tap), plus a full cocktail menu. The food is equally impressive; a departure from typical bar food, Wet City’s menu features fun bites like kimchi tots and short rib poutine, as well as sandwiches and burgers.
Guilford Hall Brewery
Located in the historic 1898 factory of Crown Cork & Seal—the engineers of the modern beer bottle cap and cork sealing method—in Station North Arts & Entertainment District, Guilford Hall offers European-style ales and bites inspired by traditional Bavarian recipes. Besides a brewery, Guilford Hall’s spacious property includes a full-service restaurant, intimate beer garden and an event space able to accommodate 200 guests. Can’t stick around? No worries! All of Guilford’s on-tap beers are available to go in one liter bottles.
Thirsty for more?
While you're out on the town, add one of these other outstanding brews to your beer bucket list or bring home a six-pack to remember some of the unique flavors of Baltimore.
DuClaw Brewing Co.
Try the Sweet Baby Jesus Peanut Butter Chocolate Porter. While the brewery is only open for special events, you can find the beer in 21 liquor stores in the greater Baltimore region.
Flying Dog Brewery
Try the seasonal Dead Rise Old Bay Summer Ale, brewed with local staple Old Bay seasoning and lemon. Or, check out what else they have on tap at their BWI tap house.
Full Tilt Brewing
Try a brew from the Govans Gose series, named after the brewery’s home neighborhood, or a seasonal hazy IPA from the Hops the Cat series.
Guinness Open Gate Brewery
Skip the brand’s ubiquitous Irish stout in favor of one of the experimental beers brewed on-site in Maryland—the first Guinness brewery opened in the U.S. in more than 60 years. Be sure to check out one of the new beverages from their collaboration with CaNe collective, a Black-owned mixers brand and spirits consulting company. Guinness has tapped CaNe collective to make custom mixers to go with its beers, forming one-of-a-kind beverages like the Beer-mosa and Blonde Michelada.
Crack open a Loose Cannon from Baltimore’s largest craft brewery, and you’ll feel like you’re the new mate on board. This triple-hopped IPA is both a fragrant and potent flavor of Baltimore.
Nepenthe Brewing Co.
This award-winning Hampden brewery offers creative brews, from their fruited “Rhythmic Gymnastics” sour to the tropical “Space Jellyfish” IPA.
Suspended Brewing Co.
Try the latest creation at this Pigtown brewery—it’s always changing!
City Brew Tours
Looking for a great way to see them all? Book a brewery tour with City Brew Tours to get a private shuttle and driver for your group. Your tour guide will bring you to 3-4 breweries over a few hours so you can try all the samples without worrying about who’s driving.