As we sipped pale ales on the back patio of Solera Brewery in Parkdale, Oregon, watching Mount Hood do its magnificent thing in the late-summer sun, we remembered doing the exact same thing at Berlina brewery outside Bariloche, Argentina. And we dreamed of a world trip consisting exclusively of stops at breweries with a view.
Where would we go? We only knew a couple of other candidates, both in Oregon. To fill in the blanks, we asked our fellow travel bloggers for tips and reviews of their favorite microbreweries with a kick-ass view.
Craft breweries with a view in North America
Solera Brewery, Parkdale, Oregon
The list of best local craft breweries with a view must start with Solera, the brewery that inspired this
The Hood River Valley, where a small town (village, really) of Parkdale is located amidst apple and pear orchards, is our favorite autumn destination in Oregon. We go for harvest festivals, barbecue, and since 2011 also beer.
The tap list at Solera is usually small, typically featuring a light brew like lager or pilsner, an IPA, a framhouse ale or a dark beer depending on a season, and some guest brews from Central Oregon breweries as well.
But it’s really the view we come for. The back patio with picnic tables stretches out into a field and orchards. You sit and sip and stare Mount Hood in the face, and you feel like you could just stay there all day, in appreciation of all the beautiful things humanity and nature have produced.
If you go:
- Location: 4945 Baseline Drive, Parkdale, Oregon, USA
- Hours: Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday 4:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m., Friday–Sunday noon to 10:00 p.m. (closed Wednesday)
- Website: www.SoleraBrewery.com
Thunder Island Brewing, Cascade Locks, Oregon
Ever since Thunder Island Brewing opened in 2013, Cascade Locks, a small town about midway between Portland and Hood River with a bridge to Washington (called no less than the Bridge of the Gods), has become worth making a regular stop. The brewery is located in a warehouse right where the Columbia River narrows. You can watch boats and trains on the Washington side rumble by as you sip a craft beer made a few feet away sitting at a picnic table on a sunny patio.
The tap list is small but mighty, with perennials and seasonals complemented by guest taps to round out the offering. We always enjoy an IPA and a pale ale, but it is the Toasted Coconut Porter that has us by the taste buds. Dark and creamy, it’s a coconut dream that serves as dessert when we visit on the way home to Portland from a day trip in the Hood River Valley.
Like drinking craft beer with a view of Mount Hood at Solera, drinking microbrews by the Columbia is a quintessential Oregon experience.
If you go:
- Location: 515 SW Portage Road, Cascade Locks, Oregon, USA
- Hours: alternate by season, check the website for current hours
- Website: ThunderIslandBrewing.com
Buoy Beer Company, Astoria, Oregon
Buoy Beer Company’s taproom sits on an old pier warehouse with views of the Columbia River (and a window in the floor to watch sea lions lounge among the pillars). You can sip your beer watching cargo ships pass by the town of Astoria. The stunning location has the crowds to go with it: sometimes the wait extends to hours, except if you’re willing to sit at the bar.
While the food is your typical pub fare, we come for the beer, which is stellar. A while back we declared Buoy Pilsner to be the best pilsner made in Oregon. The first time we had it was a revelation: cold, crisp, hoppy with just the right bite.
If you go:
- Location: 1 Eighth Street, Astoria, Oregon, USA
- Hours: Sunday–Thursday 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., Friday–Saturday 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.
- Website: www.BuoyBeer.com
Agrarian Ales, Corvallis, Oregon
by Jen Shafer, Slowly Global
Housesitting in Corvallis, Oregon, we stopped in at nearby Agrarian Ales Brewing Company. Not only does Agrarian use Oregon hops, they actually grow their own hops right on the property–more than 15 varieties, in fact! They also support local farmers by purchasing the majority of other beer and bar-food ingredients from within a 30-mile radius.
We ended up going back a few times during our housesit that summer. The family- and dog-friendly beer garden includes a dozen or so picnic tables spread around their vast backyard where you can soak up the gorgeous farm views and often enjoy a few hours of local live music. Definitely one of the more unique breweries in the Willamette Valley!
If you go:
- Location: 31115 Crossroads Lane W, Eugene, Oregon, USA
- Hours: Friday 3:00 to 8:00 p.m., Saturday–Sunday noon to 8:00 p.m.
- Website: AgAles.com
Stone Brewing, Escondido, California
by Noel Morata, Travel Photo Discovery
One of my favorite breweries with a nice view is located in North San Diego, in the region around Escondido. It’s called the Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens. Located inconspicuously in a business park in a plain warehouse building, the brewery opens up into a fabulous large open space with a wall of windows and sliding doors overlooking a lush garden. Filled with beautiful landscape, water features, and colorful plantings the spacious and stunning garden along with an expansive bar and restaurant has a modern and organic vibe that feels comfortable and welcoming.
Stone Brewing offers tours of their brewing facilities and tastings at the bar area, or you can create your own tasting menu and delicious food to match from the menu.
To find out more about this fun space, check out my recent post about visiting Stone Brewing and other Escondido attractions in the area.
If you go:
- Location: 1999 Citracado Parkway, Escondido, California, USA (Stone Brewing has one other restaurant and a taproom)
- Hours: Sunday–Thursday 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., Friday–Saturday 11:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.
- Website: www.StoneBrewing.com
Banff Ave. Brewing Co., Banff, Canada
by Alethea Smartt, Coast to Prost
After the success of their first business partnership, Jasper Brewing Company, the first national park brewery in Canada, five friends opened Banff Ave. Brewing Company in 2010. Located on the second and third floors of the Clock Tower building in the heart of Banff’s pedestrian-friendly downtown, the brewpub offers outdoor seating on a balcony overlooking its namesake thoroughfare. Don’t miss the opportunity to enjoy your beer with a view of the Canadian Rockies. They even have heat lamps to keep you warm in cooler weather.
All of the beer is made with local Rocky Mountain water. Year-round standards include Lower Bankhead Black Pilsner, Banff Ave Blonde Ale, Pond Hockey Pale Ale, and Head Smashed IPA. All are very sessionable with an average ABV (alcohol by volume) of only 4.9%. The remainder of the tap list is comprised of seasonals and specialty beers; they have even made a gruit.
The brewpub serves a full food menu featuring classics like burgers, wings and nachos, as well as upscale options like wild Pacific salmon and locally raised beef sirloin steak.
If you go:
- Location: 110 Banff Avenue, 2nd Floor Clocktower Village Mall, Banff, Alberta, Canada
- Hours: every day 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 a.m.
- Website: www.BanffAveBrewingCo.ca
Les Brasseurs du Temps, Gatineau, Quebec, Canada
by Vanessa Chiason, Turnipseed Travel
Better known as BDT to its many fans, Les Brasseurs du Temps has a history that’s both long and short. In 1821, a brewery was founded on BDT’s site in Gatineau, Quebec, Canada. It was such an important part of the community that the adjacent creek was named Ruisseau de la Brasserie (Brewery Creek). Over time the city changed, and the brewery shut down and fell into ruin. But in 2009, BDT was built on the site and once more Ruisseau de la Brasserie had a namesake.
BDT makes 40 different beer and, at any given time, the brewery has 6 to 12 available, including their signature Et La Lumiere Fut, which translates to “And there was light” but also has a double meaning, as “fut” is also a colloquial term for a beer tap. It’s a light, American-style pale ale with a bit of sweetness from the malt. It’s perfect to enjoy on a hot summer’s day as you enjoy a view of the creek; chances are, you’ll see some kayakers or even long boat canoers.
BDT also has a beer-based food menu, a small museum outlining the history of beer and brewing in the area, and a cultural program which includes 75 concerts a year.
If you go:
- Location: 170 rue Montcalm, Gatineau, Québec, Canada
- Hours: Sunday–Wednesday 11:30 a.m. to midnight, Friday–Saturday 11:40 a.m. to 2:00 a.m.
- Website: www.BrasseursduTemps.com
Microbreweries with a great view in Latin America
Cerveceria Antiguo Almacen de la Madera y El Tabaco, Havana, Cuba
It never occurred to us to associate Cuba with craft beer. Yet there are two microbreweries in the capital, both in the Havana Vieja neighborhood. Of the two, we preferred Cerveceria Antiguo Almacen de la Madera y El Tabaco, both for its location and its production (service leaves much to be desired, as you may expect from a government enterprise).
The brewery and its beer hall are located in a warehouse on one of the many docks lining the port of Havana. Its industrial chic decor brought any old American brewery to mind, its wharf location San Francisco.
Only three, German-style brews are on tap, all with a tart bite of beer that fermented in a higher-than-needed temperature and, at the same time, hasn’t quite finished fermenting (steady power delivery can be an issue in Cuba):
- Rubia, a light lager
- Oscura, a refreshing amber
- Negra, a dark lager the color of milk chocolate
On hot days of Cuban summer, you have to drink the beer fast lest it gets to warm. But if you find a seat outside, you can watch the seemingly slow-mo action around the bay, and, like all of Cuba, hurry absolutely nowhere.
If you go:
- Location: Ave del Puerto y San Pedro, La Habana Vieja, Havana, Cuba
- Hours: every day noon to midnight
- Website: n/a
- Photos here, here, here, and here.
RedFrog Pub Brewery, on board the cruise ship Carnival Vista
by Tracey Kifford, Pack the PJs
For a microbrewery with a brilliant view the cruise ship Carnival Vista is hard to beat. They have a resident brewer and a proper microbrewery. For $12.95 you can do a tour of the facility, ask questions, and taste all of the beers. The view changes daily and at the moment the Vista is cruising the Western Caribbean from Miami calling at Ochos Rios (Jamaica), the Cayman Islands, Cozumel (Mexico) and then back to Miami. So, the location is difficult to beat and the beer is fabulous. Sit in an outside booth in the RedFrog Pub and watch the world come to you!
The RedFrog Pub on Carnival Vista is definitely an excellent venue for those who love craft beers even without the added advantage of the micro-brewery. The brewhouse is a German microbrewery design on a 3-barrel system that works really well; there are eight 200-gallon fermenters. The brew master, Colin Presby, expects to make around 18 barrels a week depending upon the popularity of different beers (brewing takes about two to three weeks). There is some talk about bottling some beers but this is way in the future.
All beer except the wheat is transferred to the barrel as “bright beer “and then served up by sparkler pump. At the front-end of the brewery there are two German-made copper-top glass kettles run by steam from the ship for malting and mashing malted grains at the start of each brew.
The Carnival Vista brewery produces three types of beer using recipes from Miami’s Concrete Beach Brewery, a subsidiary of The Boston Beer Company.
The beers produced include Thirsty Frog IPA, a 6% brew of quality with a fabulous hoppy flavour; Thirsty Frog Caribbean Wheat beer, which is a citrusy cloudy Weisen beer made with coriander and orange peel (perfect for hot climates); and Thirsty Frog Red, a fabulous red craft beer. Finally, Frisky Frog Java Stout is a dark and rich porter style beer with a creamy head.
The RedFrog Pub is a very popular hangout, and you can see why!
If you go:
- Location: on board of Carnival Vista cruise ship
- Hours: vary
- Website: n/a
Nevada Cervecería, Minca, Colombia
by Iris Veldwijk, Mind of a Hitchhiker
Any beer lover that finds themselves at the Colombian coast near Santa Marta should try to get their hands on a bottle of Nevada. Up the Sierra Nevada mountains past the town of Minca, you’ll see the sign to Nevada brewery and the La Victoria coffee company.
Yes, two of humanity’s favorite beverages in one place!
When hiking to the cervecería, I was lucky enough to encounter the German owner of Nevada. After a polite Gutentag-exchange, Jonas kindly gave me a ride in his red 4WD to his Bierhaus down a muddy road and across a little river. Unfortunately, thereare currently no tours of the facility, but one can take a peek inside and witness the Breaking Bad-sized tanks and equipment.
Open since 2014, they have three beers available:
- Happy Nebbi Pils
- Happy Toucan Irish Red Ale
- Happy Coca Pale Ale, a total masterpiece
The barley malt is imported, but the mineral water is locally sourced from the Sierra’s glacial rivers. All three beers have about the same alcohol contents, but Happy Coca has the highest IBU (International Bittering Units): the clear winner in my book. One can sample them in the bistro on the premises, with the view of lush green jungle and the calming sound of the river. Hold on tight; the humidity makes for rapid condensation on a cold bottle.
If you go:
Berlina Brewery, Bariloche, Argentina
Berlina’s pub and restaurant (the beer is brewed in Colonia Suiza some 20 kilometers away) brims with the atmosphere of a small mountain town: stone-and-wood interior, views of Nahuel Huapi National Park peaks, lots of regulars, soccer games on TV, and Argentinian music on stereo.
Berlina’s beers soar to the heights of the microbrewing craft. The tap list is impressive, but since a sampler won’t do the beers justice, be bold in your selection. The more interesting brews on tap when we visited were:
- Colonia Suiza, a boozy ale with an addition of juniper, which lent it a special whiskey-like character.
- Foreign Stout, a real-deal big stout, with pronounced toasted malts, hints of coffee beans, chickory bitterness, and a smoky aura.
- Double IPA, a brutally hoppy beer that punches your taste buds.
Because of the location and beer, we once named Berlina the best craft brewery outside of Bariloche.
If you go:
- Location: Avenida Bustillo 11750 / Km 12, Bariloche, Argentina.
- Hours: every day from noon to midnight
- Website: CervezaBerlina.com
Local craft breweries with a view in Australia
Little Creatures Brewing, Fremantle (Perth), Australia
by Jen Shafer, Slowly Global
When we booked our flight from Kathmandu to Perth a few years ago, we didn’t know if we were flying into a desert, a bustling port town, or a bland metropolis.
Perth turned out to be a pleasant little city with some real gems in the surrounding areas. One day we took a break from our sheep ranch WWOOF stay in nearby Chittering Valley to visit an artsy little Perth suburb called Fremantle (“Freo” to the locals). There we ran across Little Creatures Brewing.
After a quick picnic lunch on the Fishing Boat Harbour where Little Creatures is located, we stopped at their brewhouse for a tasting. The friendly “Hop Head” pouring our tastes was interested to learn that we were from Oregon, as that’s where Little Creatures was getting most of their hops at the time. With a few tastes and a few pints of White Rabbit White Ale and Little Creatures IPA in their casual brewhouse atmosphere, we were ready to face the sheep again!
If you go:
- Location: 40 Mews Road, Fremantle, Western Australia
- Hours: vary by space/room
- Website: LittleCreatures.com.au
Breweries with a view in Europe
Kaapse Brouwers, Rotterdam, Netherlands
There are only three microbreweries in Rotterdam, and the locals only recommended De Kaapse. We took a Water Taxi from the Maritime Museum to get there. You can also walk or take ground transit, but since the city is defined by water, we enjoyed the bumpy ride across the Maas river thoroughly.
The brewery’s taproom is located in the Fenix Food Factory. The fffff, as we immediately wanted to start calling it, is a re-developed warehouse in the up-and-coming neighborhood of Katendrecht. A slew of restaurants and eateries encircle a central area with tables. The patio on the Maas offers views of the Euromast tower, Hotel New York, and other architecture across the water.
Beer here is a combination of European and American styles. Among the standards, Karel, an American bitter, and Gozer, an oatmeal stout, stood out. If De Kaapse products somehow don’t strike your fancy, the guest tap list is extensive, and there is also a bottle shop next to the taproom.
If you go:
- Location: Veerlaan 19-D, Rotterdam, Netherlands
- Hours: Tuesday–Sunday noon to 11:00 p.m. (closed Monday)
- Website: www.KaapseBrouwers.nl
If you’ve been to any of these breweries, what did you think? Do you have any local microbreweries with a nice view to add here? Let us know in the comments.
Pin this for later