Best Chicago Breweries
29 August 2019
One of our favorite things about Chicago is that the combination of its downtown hub and surrounding neighborhoods invigorate the city with a vibrancy and buzz that’s hard to find elsewhere. That energy spills over to the beers brewed in this city, where brewing powerhouses and independent shops all coexist in harmony, creating a delicious beer ecosystem for us all to enjoy. Here are just a few of our favorite local breweries:
The Chicago Brewing Powerhouses:
Started in Northern California in 1993, Lagunitas Brewing Company is the boozy brainchild of Tony Magee. Hailing from California, Chicago is home to the second brewery Lagunitas opened. Their taproom, located in Pilsen, features eleven beers on tap (we recommend the classic Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale), alongside a delicious menu of eats and live in-house performances.
Lagunitas is located at 2607 W 17th St, Chicago, IL 60608. You can find out more about them on their website.
Half Acre Beer Company got its start in 2006 and officially opened their own brewery in March of 2009 in the North Center neighborhood of Chicago. With amazing food and classic local brews, there’s no way to go wrong—though we recommend starting with everyone’s favorite beer, Daisy Cutter!
Half Acre’s brewery is located at 4257 N Lincoln Ave, Chicago, IL 60618 – but you can also taste their delicious beers at their Tap Room & Garden location, located at 2050 W Balmoral Ave, Chicago, IL 60625. You can find out more about them on their website.
Revolution earns their keep on the list of Chicago Brewing Powerhouses by being Illinois’ largest independently-owned brewery. This innovative member of the libation scene introduces dozens of new options each year, constantly trying to discover bigger and better flavors. Visit their brewery, or, if the hankerings for beer and pub food really hit, their brewpub even delivers.
Revolution’s brewpub is located at 2323 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647 and their brewery + taproom is located at 3340 N Kedzie Ave, Chicago, IL 60618. You can find out more about them on their website.
Goose Island founder and beer lover John Hall toured across Europe to discover the best tasting beers. He decided that America needed to experience brewing in the same way—treating it like a craft. And thus, the new era of craft brewing was ushered in.
Goose Island has three locations in Chicago: their taproom, barrel warehouse and brewhouse. You can find out more about them on their website.
A Drink Off the Beaten Path:
Right Bee Cider
Right Bee Cider is new on the Chicago scene, started by a couple who found love over their love of cider. Their urban cidery uses fresh-pressed apples and honey produced by bees that they keep on the rooftop of their own building. You can tour their taproom and try their unique, craft ciders.
Right Bee Cider is located at 1830 N Kostner, Chicago, IL 60639. You can find out more about them on their website.
Marz Company Brewing
Marz promises an unconventional drinking experience, focusing on ongoing experimental collaboration within the brewing community. The idea of the brewery was conceived in the beloved, Bridgeport-local Maria’s Packaged Goods. They describe their taproom’s offerings as “Experimental ales, cloudy boy IPAs, session beers, delectable stouts, new twists on classic styles, delightful non-alcoholic concoctions, and bottle-conditioned and barrel-aged wild ale wonders.”
Marz Community Brewing Company is located at 3630 S Iron St, Chicago, IL 60609. You can find out more about them on their website.
Forbidden Root is a restaurant and brewery — the first botanical brewery in Chicago. Their craft beer is inspired by nature, and experiments with ingredients alongside taste, texture and aroma. True to their roots (get it?), their restaurant serves fresh, seasonal dishes that highlight their craft beer offerings.
Forbidden Root is located at 1746 W Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL 60622. You can find out more about them on their website.
Off Color Brewing
Off Color is unique because they offer both house and guest brews at their taproom. Their funky tasting room also offers cocktails, wine and coffee in a nicely tucked-away Lincoln Park location. Though they don’t offer food, they have a relationship with Pizzeria Bebu around the corner—so you can BYOP (bring your own pizza).
Off Color Brewing Taproom, the Mousetrap, is located at 1460 N Kingsbury St, Chicago, IL 60642. You can find out more about them on their website.