Need some Montana info.

Discussion in 'Mountain' started by Victory_Sabre1973, Aug 12, 2022.

  1. Victory_Sabre1973

    Victory_Sabre1973 Grand Pooh-Bah (4,179) Sep 15, 2015 Minnesota
    Pooh-Bah Trader

    Hey, I am going to visit some friends next week in Montana. They live in Laurel, and we're also going to their cabin, for a few days, in the mountains in the Wolf Creek area. Just wondering what to look out for? They live a couple of blocks from High Plains Brewing in Laurel, so I will be going there. I also hope to make it Enis to visit the Distillery there, so I can bring some of their delicious liquors back home to Minnesota.

    Thank you all in advance.
    muchloveforhops3 and woemad like this.
  2. derftron

    derftron Pooh-Bah (1,577) Feb 8, 2012 Oregon

    I was just in the Kalispell / Flathead valley area for a few weeks.

    The best Montana beers I found in cans were from Mountains Walking brewing. Their “west coast” traditional IPA was really good. The Hazy was also good, but I’m not a huge fan of the style.

    Kalispell brewing is solid.

    Glacier brewing makes some interesting beers, including Creeper Pigeon, which they market as a “milkshake” IPA, but it’s anything but.
  3. blackcloud

    blackcloud Savant (1,075) Apr 28, 2012 Alaska

    I'm sure some MT locals will chime in, but MAP in Billings has some great beers (close to Laurel) and based on the three locations you mention, you'll be likely to pass through Bozeman. Mountains Walking and Bozeman Brewing are my don't miss stops in BZN, Outlaw is also pretty great. If you're going from the Wolf Creek area to Ennis you'll pass close to the new Bridger spot in Three Forks - solid beers but nothing super exciting. Good pizza too.
  4. woemad

    woemad Grand Pooh-Bah (5,003) Jun 8, 2003 Washington
    Pooh-Bah Trader

    Mountains Walking makes some very solid beers across a variety of styles.
  5. distantmantra

    distantmantra Pooh-Bah (2,942) May 23, 2011 Washington
    Pooh-Bah Trader

    And their Japanese-inspired spinoff brewery, New Hokkaido, is really good as well.
  6. BokoMatt

    BokoMatt Initiate (102) May 29, 2021 Montana

    Billings - UberBrew consistently offers great beer. By All Means ain’t bad (Same ownership). Carter’s is old school in a train depot and offers more than 20 brews at a time so you should be able to find something you like. Carter’s, Angry Hank’s, Thirsty Street, and UberBrew are all within walking distance.

    North of Laurel is a gem called Gally’s in the town of Harlowton. But it’s a drive (110 miles). You do get a great view of the Crazy Mountains if you go.

    Big Timber has Crazy Peaks but I’ve never stopped there. There’s a small, dark bar/restaurant called Timber Bar. Their bottle list is surprising and their tap list is usually unique and good.

    Livingston has two breweries (Neptune’s and Katabatic). The beer is better in Billings and Bozeman.

    Bozeman - Hidden gem at Four Corners called New Ventures. Only spot if you like Belgian and/or English beer. Also a brew supply shop so they know their beer and love it. I’ve brewed a small batch there and the people are great. Best venue is MAP and the beer is solid, especially if you like IPA. Mountains Walking is solid and known for dessert beer, sours, and IPAs. Across the street Bozeman Brewing is Bozeman’s oldest and has some solid options along with a large sour line (Bozeman Underground). Shred Monk is the newest and is making some unique brews (grissette, Burton IPA, dark mild). Outlaw is solid, especially since they make a lot of gluten-reduced or gluten-free beer. Shine is your best option for buying singles to take back to Minnesota.

    Across the street from Willie’s (Ennis distillery) is Burnt Tree Brewing. They make some unique brews that I’ve enjoyed. I hear they make a decent pizza too but never had it.

    Feel like this is enough for one post but fire away if you have specific questions about breweries along I-90 from Billings to Butte and the surrounding area. I’ve been to most of them too many times to count and am happy to answer any specifics.
  7. Victory_Sabre1973

    Victory_Sabre1973 Grand Pooh-Bah (4,179) Sep 15, 2015 Minnesota
    Pooh-Bah Trader

    I did make one mistake in my original post. Cascade is the town closest to my friend's cabin.

    Thank you for all the info so far, and will use it on my trip.

    I do have one other question: what kind of distro is in Montana? Anything interesting that I can't get in Minnesota?
  8. Reidrover

    Reidrover Grand Pooh-Bah (4,435) Jan 14, 2003 Oregon
    Pooh-Bah Society

    Looks like there is couple of breweries just north of Cascade in Great Falls..dont seem much but may be interesting.
    MT PINTS - Home

    these guys serve beers from the Jeremiah Johnson brewery..

    and these guys
    Black Eagle Brewery - Black Eagle, Montana is coming soon!
  9. BokoMatt

    BokoMatt Initiate (102) May 29, 2021 Montana

    Ahhh that’s a beautiful part of the state. You will be close to Great Falls. I believe you will have to drive through Helena and they have some solid breweries. If have an opportunity Blackfoot and Copper Furrow are my favorites but Lewis & Clark and 10 Mile should also treat you well. Black Eagle is my favorite in the Great Falls area but I haven’t spent much time there. I bet Jeremiah Johnson is the most popular Great Falls brewery. They sell cans all over the state.

    If you don’t go through Helena I guess you’ll drive through Great Falls from the east so you’ll drive through Harlowton (Gally’s) and Belt (Harvest Moon). If you go to Harvest Moon grab the Beltian White and the Pigs Ass Porter and prepare for towns small enough that the breweries are one of the best shows in town. We have a bunch of breweries that are also town centers. On the right day or night you can meet all the locals.

    Not sure Montana gets much that you can’t get in Minnesota besides the smaller Montana breweries. Maybe we’ll have a better selection of some Idaho and Wyoming stuff (Snake River, Grand Teton, Blacktooth, Melvin). From Colorado we get some New Belgium, Oskar Blues, Breckenridge. And you’ll see some Fremont and Georgetown from Washington, a little from Portland and Bend, OR, and a little California. Shine in Bozeman is probably your best chance to grab singles from the region.
  10. Vitacca

    Vitacca Pooh-Bah (2,034) Sep 15, 2010 Montana
    Pooh-Bah Society Trader

    If B6K is out at Shine and you’re passing through Bozangeles, stop at Hop Lounge and grab yourself a pour. It’s delish.
  11. Victory_Sabre1973

    Victory_Sabre1973 Grand Pooh-Bah (4,179) Sep 15, 2015 Minnesota
    Pooh-Bah Trader

    Hearing that you get Fremont out there excites me for sure. The only time I have had their beers are from BIFs. Can't wait to get there.
    muchloveforhops3, woemad and Vitacca like this.
  12. OffTrail

    OffTrail Devotee (315) Aug 12, 2012 Washington

    It's cool to read this if only to be reminded of the Montana attitude towards distance.

    In that spirit you could drive 50 miles south from Laurel and try Red Lodge Ales. If you do, you can check out how the reconstruction from the June flood is going. I would be curious to know.
  13. OffTrail

    OffTrail Devotee (315) Aug 12, 2012 Washington

    Full disclosure - I last stopped at Red Lodge Ale 11 years ago. I would not say that it is worth a 100 mile round trip, even for Montanans.
  14. BokoMatt

    BokoMatt Initiate (102) May 29, 2021 Montana

    I was at Hop Lounge yesterday and they’re still pouring it and still have a few bottles for sale.
    Victory_Sabre1973 likes this.
  15. Victory_Sabre1973

    Victory_Sabre1973 Grand Pooh-Bah (4,179) Sep 15, 2015 Minnesota
    Pooh-Bah Trader

    I am in Montana now, and at my friend's place
    I went to High Plains last night and enjoyed it, though, they don't have a brewer, and right now their beers are contract brewed.

    One thing I didn't anticipate is the altitude. I was pregame at my friend's place, and working on my 2nd Grain Belt, I realized I was wasted. I am used to 1000 ft, but 3000 ft is a whole different game for me.

    I will be hitting Uberbrew today for a quick one before we head to Cascade. Thanks everyone for all your advice/ideas.
    muchloveforhops3 and woemad like this.
  16. BokoMatt

    BokoMatt Initiate (102) May 29, 2021 Montana

    Ah you’re making me crave their Alpha Force Double Tap and Humulus Insani. Enjoy!
    Victory_Sabre1973 likes this.
  17. Victory_Sabre1973

    Victory_Sabre1973 Grand Pooh-Bah (4,179) Sep 15, 2015 Minnesota
    Pooh-Bah Trader

    I am at Red Lodge right now, after a day trip to Cody, WY. It seemed like a good place to visit on my way back to Laurel.

    They are recovering from the flooding, but there's a lot of buildings that are in the process of being torn down from the damage sustained. The road is a bit of a mess also in spots from it.
    muchloveforhops3 likes this.
  18. Wrigleyf

    Wrigleyf Initiate (0) Jun 7, 2012 Georgia

    If in Northwest Montana (Lakeside (near Kalispel) / Missoula) I strongly recommend a visit to Tamarack Brewing. Best brewery of the 6-7 I have been to in that area. Also the food is first rate - a big upgrade from normal pub fare.
  19. Victory_Sabre1973

    Victory_Sabre1973 Grand Pooh-Bah (4,179) Sep 15, 2015 Minnesota
    Pooh-Bah Trader

    I am back home now, and I want to thank you all for your advice. It helped me have one hell of a good time, and I will be going back next year.
    muchloveforhops3 and Vitacca like this.
  20. OffTrail

    OffTrail Devotee (315) Aug 12, 2012 Washington

    Thank you for the update. My grandparents used to live about a mile from where Red Lodge Ales is now, on the other side of Rock Creek. That bridge is gone now, like the others. If they were still there they would have to get their groceries in Billings.
    Victory_Sabre1973 likes this.