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New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
New Glarus Brewing CompanyNew Glarus Brewing Company
Based on:
35 Beers
36,777 Hads
Place Score: 99
Reviews: 70
Visits: 373
Avg: 4.52
pDev: n/a
Taps: --
Bottles: --
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: Y
[ Brewery, Bar ]

2400 Hwy 69
New Glarus, Wisconsin, 53574
United States
phone: (608) 527-5850

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Place added by: BeerAdvocate

Gift Shop
Monday - Sunday 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Free Self Guided Tours
Monday - Sunday 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Hard Hat Tour - Fridays at 1:00 p.m.
Place: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
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Reviews: 70 | Visits: 373
Reviews by sonoma01:
Photo of sonoma01
4.78/5  rDev +5.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

I will start off by saying that New Glarus Brewery is a definite must stop if you are in the area.

I stopped at the brewery this past Friday and went on the Hard Hat Tour.This was my first visit to the brewery and it definately will not be my last. The tour guide, Dan, was from the lab but was more than knowledgable on all aspects of the brewery operations. He was open to all questions and was easy to undestand even if you had non brewing knowledge to begin with. The tour included both the original Riverside brewery and the newer Hilltop brewery location. The Riverside brewery is where the Unplugged/ Thumprint are brewed. The next Apple Ale release had just finished boiling and was going into the fermenter when I was there.

The Hilltop brewery is where the newest addition, gift shop and beer depot are located. The outside apperance is like something straight out of Germany/Switzerland. Upon entering the brewery it is like walking into a museum, but it is a fully functional brewery. The operations at this location are very clean and high tech. At the end of the tour, there was a beer and local cheese tasting which took place in a private upstairs lounge that overlooked the town of New Glarus.

This is by far the cleanest brewery I have ever visited. The depth of the cleanliness actually puts most other breweries to shame. This just shows the pride and dedication that all the employees have for their namesake. The new Thumprint Chocolate Abbey was just coming off the bottling line when I was there and was available for purchase. I picked up a few packs as well as some other goodies. The prices for the beer were not that much more than at most retail outlets. The clothing items were a little on the pricey side but they were all of high quality.

Overall I would highly recommend New Glarus to anyone and let them know it is well worth the drive.

Returned for the release of Vintage 2014. The line was non existent when I got there at 10:15 on Friday. I was able to quickly get my ticket and get my allotment within 5 minutes. The La Fortuna pizza company was set up and I enjoyed one of their pizzas as well. I spent the night to enjoy the Bacon, Beer and Cheese festival on Saturday. On Saturday morning I headed back to the brewery to get some more bottles. I arrived at 8:45 and was around the 240th person in line. The brewery had staff going down the line and checking ID's and giving out wristbands to purchase the R&D release, which streamlined the release tremendously. Even with the people in front of me the line started moving a couple minutes before 9:00. I had my two bottles in hand by 9:15. Later in the day, I attended the Bacon, Beer and Cheese festival and the New Glarus booth was pouring samples of Vintage 2014 which I was able to try. After sampling the Vintage 2014 I am glad I was able to get a couple extra bottles.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of kbareis
4.59/5  rDev +1.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 3.5

Their new brewery is amazing but I wish they had more beers on tap. Maybe some more Thumbprints tapped for their guests. Overall great experience!

146 characters

Photo of amandarawrrr
5/5  rDev +10.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

NGBC is the happiest place on earth (Disney World is actually second.). Gorgeous views, amazing beer. Free tours. Free glass with your samples. Wood-fired pizza in the summer. Plus they've just renovated the beer garden so it's even more lovely to walk around. Living in Madison I take any excuse I can get to come visit - but it never feels frequent enough. Definitely my favorite brewery and a must-see for those coming from out of town who want to experience the kind of beer you can get Only In Wisconsin!

 509 characters

Photo of Jonnydrinker
4.59/5  rDev +1.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

Photo of kylehay2004
4.08/5  rDev -9.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 3.5

Photo of JFeres
5/5  rDev +10.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Photo of dmbforever
4.73/5  rDev +4.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4

Photo of PYITE86
4.54/5  rDev +0.4%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4

Photo of adamranders
4.76/5  rDev +5.3%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75

Photo of BecauseWhalezbro
4.44/5  rDev -1.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

Photo of krome
4.13/5  rDev -8.6%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4

Beautiful facility. Lots of outdoor seating with amazing views

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Photo of cbcrunch
4.5/5  rDev -0.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Photo of tgates
4.16/5  rDev -8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 3.5

Really a beautiful space up on the hillside with great views and lots of room to meander. $8 gets you a beer and nice NG glass to take home. Service is fine and its fun to roam on the (limited access) self-guided tour. My main complaint is that there is never anything unique on draft. Just standard fare that for the most part you can grab in bottles at any grocery store in WI. Would be fun if they did some one offs or variations of the regular lineup... Still worth the visit of you've never been.

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Photo of Zatch90
4.34/5  rDev -4%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5

Photo of mpetterson2112
5/5  rDev +10.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Photo of micahlange33
3.71/5  rDev -17.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 2

Photo of amano_h
4.06/5  rDev -10.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75

I'm slightly torn on how much I like the New Glarus Brewery; whereas the brewery itself was probably the most unique brewery I've had the pleasure of visiting bar none, my inclination toward brewpubs, where the focus is more about being able to sample as much of the brewery's beer as possible (e.g. All four Stone Brewpubs/Stations, the Three Floyds Brewpub, the Dogfish Head Brewery) as opposed to those that tend to focus more on the history and legacy of the brewery (e.g. Ommegang, NG, and... NG) kind of had me thinking NGBC fell a little short of a perfect experience.

That being said, the brewery is actually really cool; until visiting the brewery I had no idea that the town of New Glarus was Wisconsin's "Little Swiss" and a lot of what is now considered Wisconsin cuisine has Swiss roots. First time visits here will definitely last longer than your average brewery tour, even if you're not a big fan of beer, due to the sheer size and amount of things on display at the brewery.

But despite all the cool touches from the country that brought us the Matterhorn...ish, I can certainly see how hardcore fans of the craft beer company that only distributes to the state of Wisconsin--beating out the likes of Great Lakes, Victory, Ballast Point and many others that distribute pretty much to every state that will have them, in NATIONAL SALES--might be a little disappointed with the brewery experience, or the lack thereof, at New Glarus.

The following is a small wish-list I have for NGBC, that would probably bump mine and everyone else's rating of this establishment to a 5:

1. More beers on tap!
Not that there's anything wrong with the Beer Depot they have on site (all hail the beer depot!) but when I went, there was only three year-round selections (Moon Man, Spotted Cow, Two Women) plus one "special," which was Raspberry Tart. As much as I enjoyed all of these with the three tasters, I probably would have stayed a lot longer if they had some of their other non-year rounds available on tap (something that's already hard enough to find). I'm pretty sure droves of people would have flocked to the non-AT&T/Verizon/T-Mobile friendly town of NGBC had word got out that the likes of Cran-bic, Scream IIPA, Apple Ale and etc. were available on tap on a seasonally regular basis. Oh and given NGBC's long brewing history, a tasting wheel (insert Hyperbole and a Half meme with "drink ALL the beers!" caption here) would have been nice too.

2. More Brewery exclusives!
I know that NGBC occasionally puts out and sells out of their R&D Series as probably one of the hardest to obtain and most sought after brewery exclusives in craft beer history (if you don't believe me, go look up the price of an R&D VSB or VSP on one of those many sites that sell "empty bottles" online), but heck, they don't all have to be as epic as the R&D series--just something that you know you can only taste at the brewery would have made the drive from Madison (which by the way only has one noticeable landmark, which would be the EPIC Campus) a lot more tolerable. And probably encourage return visits.

3. More Food!
Yes, the outdoor patio with the pizza is nice, but somehow doesn't really tie in with the whole Swiss theme -- heck, even a Moon Man Battered Cheese Curd stand would probably make the trip a whole lot enjoyable.

4. Less Flies
Pretty self-explanatory.

It doesn't seem fair to just rag on subjectively about what I think should be done better, so I'll finish with some highlights:

-A crap ton of NGBC paraphernalia at the Gift Store
-You get to keep your tasting glass(es)! They even wash and wrap the glass for you after you're done! WHO DOES THAT?!
-The Alphorn players are super chill
-You get one free pint with a valid DoD ID
-Plenty of parking

All in all, even if you're not a fan of New Glarus or beer in general, the brewery is a good place for an afternoon of wholesome family fun. Definitely beats driving to Milwaukee for beer.

 3,966 characters

Photo of XBeerBellyT
4.86/5  rDev +7.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Photo of 1000lbgrizzly
3.93/5  rDev -13.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

-The area. It's cool. Multilevel area overlooking a little valley below with lots of brick ruins housing tables. Gives you something to explore or sit down for some privacy. Only downside is that there is very little shade, and I wonder what they do in the winter.
-The signs make getting a beer more complicated than it actually is (different pricing on buying a glass and first beer and then refills, why not just say $2 for the glass and here are beer prices?). It could use some simplifying, but in the meantime the people behind the counter are very patient and informative.
-Pour stations were quick and efficient, if a little non-personable. Also, not many beers to choose from (5 or 6 regular beers and 2 fruit beers, all of which can be found in just about every gas station).
-Gift shop has tons of New Glarus merchandise, a lot of cool German steins, and other beer paraphernalia. Some is kitschy, but most is cool.
-Self guided tour, which is just a hallway where you can see their equipment. If you're a real beer nerd you'll probably like it, even if you've seen a dozen breweries before, but any less enthusiasm or knowledge and it'll probably be a little bland. But I am not griping, it is cool and good public outreach that they do this.
-Now, for the bottled beer store. Good selection, awful value. Unless you want just one of everything, it is cheaper to drive literally down the street to the gas station and purchase your beer, and you will have just about the same selection. Why is the brewery charging more than the gas station? Convenience fee? I do not know for sure, but I do know that I felt ripped off.
-Back to the vibe of this place. I know it is a new facility, and I do like clean facilities, but this felt a little sterile. Missing the details that really give a place character. It felt more like going through the motions to add the obligatory Swedish touch.
-No food is available, not sure if they allow you to bring your own.
-10 am-4 pm are not the best hours for a good vibe. Maybe they are trying to cut down on late-night partiers, but it's kind of a bummer

Overall, a good brewery to tick and an enjoyable experience- the drinking area gets a 4.95 for vibe (deduction for no shade) but my score reflects the whole facility- but the limited draft selection, bad bottle prices, and touristy feel (that gift store...) do not make this one I would go out of my way to return to, and if I were a local I could almost see coming here to hang out just based on that awesome view, if only it had better hours. Disclaimer: I did not go on the hard hat tour, which sounds like a really good experience.

 2,637 characters

Photo of nickmauel
5/5  rDev +10.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Best brewery in Wisconsin!

26 characters

Photo of Austin32
4.19/5  rDev -7.3%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Beautiful location that has clearly had a great deal of money pumped into it. Awesome place and good beer, perfect!

115 characters

Photo of Ajlvt
4.28/5  rDev -5.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25

Photo of lewk556
4.42/5  rDev -2.2%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

I've traveled here twice now and I just love the place. I believe prices are up from last year, but still very good value. Your first pint comes with a glass and from there you can elect to get refills for a couple bucks cheaper or get a new glass if you want to take it home. Thumbprint series and fruit beers are a couple bucks more. They also have tasting glasses which are smaller but come with a wristband with 3 fills. The outdoor area is beautiful with plenty of seating and inside you can do a self-guided tour of the brewery at no charge.

 547 characters

Photo of grahuba
4.53/5  rDev +0.2%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Photo of jrs3994243
4.86/5  rDev +7.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

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New Glarus Brewing Company in New Glarus, WI
99 out of 100 based on 70 ratings.