Craft Breweries are Alive and Well in the Berkshires

Close up photo of a beer glass with title, "Get a taste of local brew."

Photo: Pawel Kadysz/UnSplash

Craft breweries are alive and well in the Berkshires. That’s good news for those of you who are fans of discovering a new local craft beer culture when you travel. Whether you’re seeking the perfect pint to hoist with some pub grub or taking measure of brewing excellence in stouts and IPAs, touring craft breweries in the Berkshires is a fantastic way to spend the day. Luckily, some of the best brews in the county are within a short drive of the Staveleigh House Bed and Breakfast in Sheffield, MA.

Craft brewing has become more of an art form than the simple science of fermentation. Beer drinkers around the world seek new and more inventive ales, and brewers are responding in droves. Not long ago you may have found a single craft brewery along the main streets and backroads of Massachusetts. Now you’ll find your choice of brew pubs and breweries in many towns and villages throughout the state.

Fortunately, the Berkshires is no exception. Of course, you can grab a cold one at most of the bistros and cafes in the area. Some may even offer a beer flight to accompany your meal. But stumbling across a hoppy ale, or a robust stout in its native environment is truly the pinnacle of a great craft brewery experience.

So, let’s take a look at what you can expect from trolling the breweries in our area.

Big Elm Brewing
Located right here in Sheffield, MA, Big Elm Brewing debuted in 2012 and has been crafting excellent ales and American lagers ever since. Their Taproom is open Thursday through Sunday, Noon to 6:00 PM. Stop in for a tour on the weekend, or have a seat and enjoy some light fare with a 413 Farmhouse Ale or a Gerry Dog Stout.

Barrington Brewery and Restaurant
Barn brewed beer and scratch-made dishes are the hallmarks of this local brewery, in business since 1995. Using solar power for brewing, the unique flavor of the beer they produce is often used in the food they serve in the pub. Featuring homemade bread and desserts, and utilizing local sausages and grass-fed burgers, you’re in for a treat when you visit this local establishment. Try their Chocolate Stout Cake for a real taste sensation.

Chatham Brewing Company
Just across the border in New York, Chatham Brewing Company is a stand-out destination for their award-winning brews and an array of classic pub grub. Open Wednesday through Sunday, stopping in for a brew here is a delight for beer enthusiasts and newcomers alike.

Great Falls Brewing Company
Just south of us, in New Canaan, CT, the Great Falls Brewing Company is a relative newcomer to the craft brew scene. Situated in a refurbished railroad depot and named for a nearby waterfall, this brewery features classic ales and lagers, as well as more familiar American style IPAs. Their taproom hosts trivia nights, live music, open mic nights, and more.

Norbrook Farm Brewery
Also south of us in Colebrook, CT, Norbrook Farm Brewery offers more than just excellent beer. You can snowshoe, mountain bike, or cross-country ski along the trails that crisscross their 450-acre property. Belly-up to the copper for a farmhouse beer or slip into a cozy nook for a cold Saison or hefty American stout.

At the end of your beer crawl, your quiet and comfortable room will be waiting for you here at the Staveleigh House Bed and Breakfast. Start planning your Berkshires craft brewery getaway today.

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